Bunk beds, roaches and nerdy geniuses: my year in a Silicon Valley hacker house

By Andrew Frawley : theguardian – excerpt

The lives of tech entrepreneurs aren’t always as glamorous as they’re made out to be, as I learned living among them on a dangerous San Francisco street

For the past 12 months of my life, I paid the bargain price of $1,250 per month to sleep diagonally in a bunk bed in a 10ft x 10ft room that I shared with a 32-year old man. Because I am 6ft 4in, sleeping diagonally in my undersized accommodation was the only way I could make it through the night without getting cramps.

Welcome to my life in the hacker house…

In my first month, there were six of us unemployed at the time. Woefully seeking income, we built a daily ritual of job-hunting together at the kitchen table until sunset. …

Unfortunately, though, hustle doesn’t always lead to results or income. While I was catching up with Will Harris, the early tenant who has been with the Negev from the beginning, he urged me to tell the story of those who don’t make it.

“Everyone hears how rosy it is out here. No one tells the story of the majority of people who do everything right, work their ass off and still end up leaving the city in six months, broke, with crushed dreams.”…(more)


Profile Shows High Housing Costs Accompany Bay Area Jobs Boom

By Ron McNicoll : independentnews – excerpt

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) has released a report showing a strong economy in the Bay Area, and the high housing prices and rents that go with a boom time.

Released last week, the report taken from data recorded in 2015, is called Vital Signs. It gives snapshots of data on a variety of topics. They include jobs, housing, transportation choices by commuters, and a slowdown in development of greenfields compared to the last decade of the 1990s.

The Bay Area reached a record $722 billion in economic production in 2015. If the Bay Area were a nation, it would rank 25th among the world’s economies, says the report. Unemployment continued to decline. Median household income reached its highest levels since 2008, prior to the start of the Great Recession.

Biggest job sector growth was in high-tech businesses, especially those that are web-related, with San Francisco and Silicon Valley growing 20 percent over two years.

The lowest-cost homes in the Bay Area remain in eastern Contra Costa and Solano counties, with median housing prices at $300,000. The Bay Area median is $708,400, and in Alameda County it is $604,800… (more)