May 18, 2002

I missed this April New York Times story on ITA, the company that powers the Orbitz website (via

But the company found that once it exhausted its network of programmers in the research field, it had difficulty finding qualified people.

Since last November, ITA has run a banner ad on Slashdot, a Web site that bills itself as "News for Nerds." That banner, and one on Freshmeat, a Slashdot affiliate, challenge readers to solve difficult programming puzzles. The ads have drawn nearly three million hits, and about 200 people have submitted answers, half of them correct. ITA has brought on three employees through this process and seven more through personal connections and postings on HotJobs.

I'm guessing that the Jeremy Wertheimer that founded ITA is that same one mentioned in the CLHS issue READ-AND-WRITE-BYTES: "Common Lisp should have a facility for reading and writing blocks of binary bytes. The lack of such a facility makes it impossible to write portable efficient programs to access binary files."

It is fitting that he was concerned with efficiency even back then.

Posted by jjwiseman at May 18, 2002 12:11 PM
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