Lately I've been asked to find someone to expand our software department, and this turned out to be quite a difficult task. We'd be happy to find someone from our local area (we're looking for someone to become part of our team "forever", the focus has always been on people more than on processes) but apparently programmers are basically non-existent today at least around here. When I say programmers I'm talking about real code... of course it's easy to find someone that self-defines him/herself as a programmer, but for which the only "programming language" is HTML.
I find this quite disappointing, but even worse is the impression I get when looking at the projects made in high school; I keep bouncing in stupid "multimedia projects" that are just HTML and may be some form (wow!). The suspect then becomes that the problem is not that the good ones actually flew away from this place, but that they indeed never existed.
I keep seeing people doing their final thesis at university that in newsgroups about C / C++ ask questions or show code snippets that are by themselves a crystal clear proof they suck *horribly* at writing code. And when they get out of university way too many think that the key is to be able to draw an UML diagram, the rest are boring details for the bozos.
But seems to me that in this picture there's something wrong, high school guys will do the nice websites, and university guys will draw nice powerpoint slides about wonderful projects. But where's the meat ? Who is going to actually write the code ?