Thar be Pirates

Shark week may be over, but fear ye the Sparc Hackaton. The theme of this annual event is appropriately dubbed “Pirates of Silicon Harbor.”

Charleston has a long history with pirates ever since Blackbeard was imprisoned here and Stede Bonnet hung high in White Point Gardens.

“We should do this every weekend,” says one local development guru, whom we suspect got offers for employment, turning them down calling them “landlubbers”.

“One of the biggest reasons I’ve liked coming here is that it’s been all work,” said another, “enough with the boring meetings that we have in our day jobs. And enough with that corporate culture crap. We’re happy because our company is growing and there’s lots of money, not because we play corn-hole while we drink craft beer. Well maybe the craft beer is ok.”

Apparently the brainchild of Bob Williams, CTO of Sparc, the event promotes community and sharing in the tech community while scrappy buccaneers pillage the heartiest hackers with offers of promotions and booty. Initially it was a way for Sparc to pull all the best and brightest from the original pirate BlackBaud, but now we see startups pulling from Sparc, and carpet-baggers arriving to scour ATD employees disgruntled by the $6million buyout by Chase.

Competition for employees is fierce among tech companies in the harbour, but as Charleston natives know all to well, when it rains on a rising tide, there may be flooding in the market. One local firm named after a high-energy pooch has even resorted to training them before they leave high school, and the Engine Yard is putting noobs through 6-month courses guaranteed to make them high-value targets for Plundering CTOs.

“This really puts the ninjas v. pirate debates to rest,” says one local nerd, who asked to remain anonymous, for fear of attacks by ninjas, “You can’t run a ship with ninjas.”

But the real draw of the event may be the food. Everyone knows coffee, pizza, beer, wings, and rum produces some of the best code, and we hear there is a smoker arriving out back, which is the best way to get programmers to stop working. On that note…

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