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Working in NYC living in CT, how is it?

I may have to consider moving to CT in the future (girlfriend is from there and she wants a masters from Yale). I worked in NYC and commuted in from NJ (1.5 hours each way) and I am wondering what it is like to do the same from CT into NYC?

What types of industry there is in CT where a programmer can work without having to travel into NYC? (My background is mostly Pharmaceutical with some .com mixed in, lots of Oracle, Java, C, and looser languages like PHP.)

I have been spending a lot of time around Old Lyme out to New Britian and down to New Haven and I have to say staying out of the deep woods I like the area. I just have not found the big corporate heart of CT yet (I might have just missed it) like there is in Northern and Central NJ.

Well thanks for any advice/stories that come from this...

Jeff
Tuesday, March 18, 2003

You can commute by train to NYC all the way out to New Haven, but you are better off anywhere closer than that. I'm in Stratford which is about 30 minutes from NH and 80-90 minutes by train from Grand Central.

The big corporate heart for CT is probably Hartford. There are a bunch of insurance companies and such up there that hire a fair number of IT people. The United Technologies companies are spread all over the state and also hire a lot of engineers.

Like NYC, there are a limited number of pure software companies in CT. Here's my list:

- LinksPoint (my company, currently not hiring)
- DataViz - Shrinkwrap software
- Cerulean Studios - Makes popular instant messaging client Trillian
- Printing for Systems - Progressive management allows part-time telecommuting. A friend got a job offer there but didn't take it.
- PriceLine - They do more than just the website, I have a relative there and I believe they are developing some fairly advanced hotel reservations systems on par w/ what the airlines have. Not sure about the cluefulness of mgmt.

I found the following on Google:
- Metaserver
- Hyperion
- Perfect Software

Like New York, most programmers in CT don't work for software companies, they work for banks or other industries. I found an article from a few years ago saying that there are about 1000 software companies in CT averaging about 10 programmers each but there were nearly six times as many programmers working outside of the software industry. (http://www.ctcase.org/13_1/softindustry.html) This is from 1998, during the bubble, so imagine that a LOT of those little companies are history - either out of business or aquired. I can think of a few off the top of my head like
Axiom-8 and Sagemaker.

Here's a very good site to get an unfiltered list:
http://www.ct.org/Directory/Directory.asp.

HTH

dmooney
Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Very informative. Thanks a lot. Some great things too look at.

Jeff
Wednesday, March 19, 2003

The key to the CT commute is to work within walking distance of Grand Central. Or slightly less ideal a single subway trip from GC. If you have to transfer you'll be in trouble.

My brother in law lives in Easton, CT, works in Tribeca and is forced to drive in before the traffic starts and can't leave until the traffic is over.

Corey Henderson
Thursday, March 20, 2003

There are a bunch of great companies to work for in and around Stamford. You could set up house in, say, Norwalk and be moments away from Stamford and New Haven.

One company that I visited and was very impressed by is Factset. Big, successful, enlightened, and growing fast. And they hire people like Joel Spolsky for motivational speeches so they have the right attitude :) Downside: their system mostly runs on VAX/VMS.

There are a lot of little hedge funds around Greenwich.

Commute from Stamford to NYC is about 45 minutes on the express train... their are less frequent expresses to many other points along the New Haven line.

Joel Spolsky
Thursday, March 20, 2003

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