Posting in Cities
Over one hundred startups have expressed interest in moving their operations to international waters, allowing foreign workers to stay close to Silicon Valley.
Blueseed, the startup ship that will bring Silicon Valley to the open waters, is quickly gaining steam among entrepreneurs. The company recently released a report announcing that it already has 133 startup firms interested in becoming tenants of its floating city.
Of this group of interested entrepreneurs, 38 percent say they would be ready to move in now and 30 percent say they would be ready to set sail within the next six months.
The idea behind the company is to provide tech startups with an atmosphere in which they can perfect their products and produce new ideas in the company of like-minded individuals. The main draw is that the “city” will float on international waters, making it possible for tech professionals all over the world to stay close to the hub of innovation—Silicon Valley.
Because the vessel will sit only 12 miles from the coast of San Francisco, international entrepreneurs will only need tourist or short-term business visas, not tough-to-get work visas, to stay on board. By creating more space for foreign workers, the company’s creators hope the ship will fill a big void in the U.S. economy.
“Instead of reinventing the wheel, Blueseed will extend Silicon Valley to the world, fueling innovation, economic growth, and job creation that would otherwise not exist due to immigration restrictions,” the company states on its website, also providing the example that each year, the U.S. has 38,000 new graduates in computer science but creates a massive 144,000 job openings in the field. Blueseed, its creators claim, will help fill that gap with international workers who were previously unable to stay in the U.S. for lack of a work visa.
The company also says that its ship will help workers in the U.S. by providing jobs for Americans ranging from vessel crew to legal advising.
Investors, entrepreneurs, engineers and developers will be able to live and work on the ship for a monthly rate of $1,200 per person, a price that includes living quarters and office space. Ferries will be available daily to transport the professionals back to San Francisco daily.
While the company has yet to purchase a ship for the endeavor, it has drawn up a few vessel ideas. It is set to take off by third quarter 2013.
May 12, 2012
1) They won't be able to compete against a land-based lifestyle in terms of cost and quality of life. 2) They may be able to avoid some taxes, but they will have to fill the vacuum of government. Capitalistimos are bad at that. No calling the Coast Guard for help. 3) The time difference between India and the US is not that important for almost all engineering projects. (Online customer service is a different story, though.)
There are a lot of kids in college at this time with no Direction. If there is such a shortage of employees in some computer related field why are the colleges not aware of it. I have two kids in school now that have no idea what to take, there argument that computer sciences is just math and they hate math makes no sense to me. Colleges should be teaching the job not crazy math classes that kids can't get through. Our education system is broke because of the greed of the colleges and everyone around them. In my own situation 20 years ago I was working on a MBA and told the time frame ran out...no notice by the way but did'nt get it because I was two classes short and told I had to start over, nothing counted?. Kids now days sit and wait for a year or two just to take the right classes so they can finish. The classes are not offered every term. Its a giant scam. The other scam is the cost of housing and board in a college town. The apartments are dumps yet the cost is double most house payments. The entire process of going to college is broke. Someone man up and fix it. As for me I'm real tired of taking loans just to pay my kids rent and tuition in a system that has pretty much failed. The educations are so far behind the rest of the world that within my life time the US will be a third world country.
"Instead of reinventing the wheel, Blueseed will extend Silicon Valley to the world, fueling innovation, economic growth, and job creation that would otherwise not exist due to immigration restrictions",. So ultimately Silicon Valley loses. It gets extended to the world, the intellectual properties of Silicon Vallians get stolen and the world gets richer. And what does Silicon Valley get in return? Nada. And to add insult to injury suffered in the US job market, they are making it easier to create jobs for immigrants! The scale of this rip-off can only be compared to America handing over Iran to a bunch of barbarians on a silver platter. The US is now paying a price for that mindless act, so I guess it will again pay a price when it's most cutting-edge technological ideas are stolen by intellectual barbarians.
Some readers managed to read through this article and I respect their remarks. My first red flag that went off in my head is with the ambiguous figures of 38,000 new graduates in computer science, followed by the ???massive 144,000 job openings in the field???. Such subjective remarks assume there are 144,000 openings for 2year, 4year, 6year, or 8year degrees new grads, there is big difference in wages with each 2years. At what ridiculous wage scale are these openings? The wage scale sometimes might reflect justly for the increased knowledge ranges, but for the most part they do not. The article is misleading. Off shore floating City sounds interesting but I really see it as dodging taxes, cheap labor, entrapment when the worker realizes they cannot go to shore (the 12 mile trip is not cheap, and only if they are US citizen) whenever they wish. If a company wants 3rd world wages, cost/economics, then they should move shop there???and stop hanging onto the secure apron of the United States.
If we're going to get all picky about jurisdictions an how being 12 miles offshore is going too save tax, ease visa restrictions and possibly allow fiendish biological experiments and WMD's to be fabricated on the doorstep of USA, then take a look at the current regulations in Europe. As a "foreigner" you can't work within any part of the Danish sector (right up to the UK median line) without being hit for Danish Tax and it's pretty much the same in Norway - both tax regimes are at the "Ouch" end of the scale. In UK it's increasingly difficult to get a visa to work in their continental shelf waters if you don't hold a passport issued by an EU country. Last year this made it almost impossible to change out Asian crew members through British ports. Given that the US Immigration has had an iron grip on any "aliens" passing through it's borders since 9/11 - with crew being virtually imprisoned on their own ships while in port and reportedly under armed guard during transit from ship to airport - I suggest mooring it off one of the Caribbean islands would be a more sensible and hassle-free approach.
Sound like what dennyinusa says about beating tax and acquiring labour on the cheap, but also a place where you can do research and experiments that would be illegal inside a country. But no one can deny that it is top cool :-)
All are welcome to leave as they see fit. Keep in mind that you will need your own "coast" guard and military protection from pirates, as well as all other government services. We are willing to negotiate a trade agreement, however you can expect to pay import tarriffs. You will only be allowed to fly or sail into the US via international ports of entry. Oh and btw, we will not recognize dual citizenship for any US citizens who choose to move there. Basically, you will be on your own. If you cannot live within the laws of the US, then you are free to relocate to international waters, or anywhere else you choose. You just can't have your cake and eat it too.
Hopefully this garbage skully will sink and take the foreign workers down with it and then Americans can have thier jobs back.He is an idea lets keep jobs in the USA so we don't become a 2nd world country.
Who will manage the ships operation and government? Is the captain the absolute ruler? What happens when they get someone on board who doesn't want to work but doesn't want to leave either. The idea is pretty good one I think. But like all other utopian community plans it is doomed to fail.
International law is that taxes on salary is due in the country where you are working. While boating in the international waters, is the nearest coastal country the beneficiary or is it the country of origin of the worker?
The people that would be attracted to work on Blueseed would no doubt prefer to be in Silicon Valley, working and paying regular taxes. But our government's self-defeating immigration and work visa laws prohibit this. "No, no, we don't want all you start-up entrepreneurs, skilled-job generators, disruptive innovation creators, and future Nobel prize winners. Stay out, stay out, stay out!" So say our luddite leaders.
Seriously ? It's not a joke ? Wow. Anyone seen the movie "Waterworld" with Kevin Costner? This is where it starts.
I spent 14 years in the Navy as an Engineer and spent times on Oil Rigs and underwater habitat: frankly the cost of running this "showboat" will be astronomical!!! Beside, any off-shore platforms are great polluters and hazards for people living on them. The total cost of operations , including wages, per heads will exceed by far the cost that most of these investors are trying to avoid by not employing US talent already living legally in the US. I know many folks; nuclear, mechanical, electrical engineers and physicists who are unemployed looking for jobs. Isn't BlueSeed the same folks trying to petition politicians to create special visas for 55,000 immigrants who want to jump the line because of their cheap labor with high IQ? So if I understand, any US dollar spent on this floating barge might never come back home! According to the 2010 U.S. Census,the Asian Indian population in the United States grew from almost 1,678,765 in 2000 (0.6% of U.S. population) to 2,843,391 in 2010 (0.9% of U.S. population), a growth rate of 69.37%, one of the fastest growing ethnic groups in the United State The current trend today is that most of my acquaintances from India working in the US are sending their hard earned dollars back home for their retirement: is that depleting the domestic GNP when that workforce makes up for almost 14% of the white collar IT workers? The sad thing is they might succeed because our politicians on both sides are so stupid to see that they are simply displacing talented US workforce for cheaper foreign labor. Sail away!
I'm sorry but I think while the technology is wonderful, the idea is not. We've already bleed enough jobs to foreign workers and illegals. The twelve mile limit is obscene. Any wokrer coming into this country needs a fully screened visa and the numbers need to be limited. American jobs to American workers first! Secondly, we will be repsonsible for all their needs, but have so say in their laws or governing - so hell no! If you want to bring in a foreign national to steal a job, then you better be prepared to pay a huge penalty for that. I don't want a floating time bomb off our shores that leaches jobs resources from Americans. If the companies think they stuff this down our throats - forget it! We get noghting out of it. They'll sponge resources and jobs and no one but the company's bottom line and managerial bonus will benefit.
It floors me every time I hear of a company that wants to start a new business but has to change existing laws to do it. It's almost like they think everyone else should change to fit their models or that certain laws should not apply to them. Here's an idea, create startups on American soil, hire American workers and pay a fair wage. This idea does not require any visas or immigration or changing existing laws, so you can eliminate a few hundred lawyers in the mix. If you have an influx of work that you can't handle, hire and train people to do the work you want them to do and again, pay a fair wage. If you need more IT people, come to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, we have had a flux of H1-B's come in and displace American IT people. Don't tell me there aren't enough American IT workers, that???s just not the case in my experince.
well this is very interesting beyond the immigration issoe. i didn't read in the story nor have i seen in the comments how this floating city might work. granted, it's only 12 miles out but what about waste removal, fuel, fresh water, energy source, minor and major emergency medical, fire/rescue, law enforcement...if it works, how many floating cities might we see offshore? even if the overall operations and construction were as "green" and "sustainable" as curent technology provides, what about privately owned boats moving back and forth to shore? i'd like to know more. imagine floating support communities that raise and prepare seafood, fresh water, maintain alternative energy sources, provide entertainment for recreation time (of all manner...). interesting to think about.
Offshore Hi tech - sounds good to me. Perhaps we can't see all implications clearly, however - projects of this kind have a future - use available space on water - moveable create jobs with added attractive benefits. Economy will benefit. It certainly will attract investors and employees alike.
Anyone heard of the Residensea? http://aboardtheworld.com/reside
Yes, offshoring works so well. Hire foreign workers for minimal pay, enjoy the tax shelter, capitalism in action. Wonderful.
You don't get the benefits - like emergency rescue and recovery etc. Simple, isn't it? And also common sense. Same principle applies to the 1% - pay your fair share (I'm talking about what it costs to protect your lifestyle and assets)
remember when ships full of non-english speaking chinese "workers" were laboring day and night off our shore keypunching in the contents of American phonebooks (Web based White Pages created by Yellow people)? Wow!! Here we go again, slave labor, no jobs for the U.S. and gobs of pollution from unregulated life support activities. This is the true color of Capitalism. It's getting really boring.
Does anybody out there think that all of those oil wells in the gulf further out than 12 miles are in "International Waters"? International Waters has a specific meaning about what laws (Admiralty Law) applies. The US as well as other nations claim natural resources, like oil, gas and fisheries within a 200 mile limit. The only exception for regulation of the 12 mile limit I am aware of is casino/gambling boats, the likes of which operate off of the coast of Florida. The US congress can pass legislation, which can establish that various regulations: visas, operating licenses, taxes extend out to 200 miles off shore. It will be interesting to see who would oppose this in our congress and senate seeing as we have so much to lose and so little to gain if this venture comes to fruition.
it is ridiculous to claim there are "144,000 job openings in the field" of computer science EVERY YEAR. That's half a million unfilled CS job openings in the last 5 years! If that were even remotely true, the salaries for CS graduates would be through the roof, their unemployment rate would be zero, and other technical fields (e.g., physics) would be getting vigorously poached for CS talent. And one boat off SF's coast wouldn't make the slightest dent in the problem. SmartPlanet, you need to fact-check before mindlessly regurgitating PR hype. Or at least do a "truthiness" check.
- - Given that the US Immigration has had an iron grip on any "aliens" passing through it's borders since 9/11 - - Low side estimates say 400,000 illegals came into the US in 2011. The bad economy and the lack of jobs in the US are the biggest reasons given by immigration advocates for the drop from the 1.6 million per year peak of the late 1990s. Really sounds like an iron grip to me.
if there 12miles out and out of U.S. waters, who will be responsible for the rescue of all on board in the event of a tsunami !
This is just not true - it's based on the "place of domicile" unless you're a US citizen in which case they want their slice wherever you live in the world.
...because Socialism and Communism have provided the greatest amount of prosperity for the greatest number of people, and created the highest standards of living in human history. Capitalism? It's reduced millions upon millions to poverty and directly resulted in the deaths of over 200 million people in the 20th century alone. Seriously, do you even know ANYTHING about history?
Don't even start on the "fair share" BS. Not when the top 1% pay over 50% of the US tax burden, and the bottom 50% pay NOTHING. You want to ask someone to pay their "fair share"? Ask the people who pay nothing, get redistributed money from others, and get all the benefits of our society. Fair would be for EVERYONE to pay the same RATE, say 10% for example, which would STILL result in the rich paying far more than the poor. UNfair is having some pay nearly all, and many pay nothing or nearly nothing, and all receive the same benefit. That is TOTALLY unfair. If you want the rich to pay more, then they should get more for their money.
For heaven's sake, Blueseed will host STARTUP ENTREPRENEURS. Dudes from India like me who create cool apps that you use on your smart phone that's smarter than you.
http://www.un.org/depts/los/convention_agreements/texts/unclos/part2.htm It explains what exactly the 12 mile limit means. No exploitation of natural resources, which Blueseed won't do.
PSFTGURU, I suggest you visit the BlueSeed website and check out their FAQ. They've been working on this idea for years and they definitely know what they're doing. They have a strong legal team specializing in maritime law and they know what is and is not allowed in the contiguous zone and the economic enterprise zones. You can certainly write your congressman to urge him/her to try to change U.S. laws all you want (and I'll bet you'll be about as successful as stopping offshore oil drilling, Wall Street bailouts and natural gas fracking). But who do you write letters to if you want to change the provisions of the United Nations Conventional Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the prevailing treaty that governs international waters? The U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations? What if Russia or China or the U.K. vetos her motion to amend UNCLOS?
Here's the table from the BLS: http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_table_102.htm Look at the "Computer and Mathematical Occupations" heading, in the "Job openings due to growth and replacements" column: 1,437.8. That's in thousands, for the 10 years between 2010 and 2010. And the reason these jobs were filled (somewhat) is outsourcing. Now what would you rather have, Indians like me work from India and don't pay any US tax, or Blueseed startup entrepreneurs who travel to the mainland frequently, pay sales tax, and create new products and services in California?
H.I. By "passing through it's borders" I mean not hiding in the back of a van or burrowing under a fence. I'm surprised any non-US mariners will crew a vessel bound for US waters, let alone crew changing in a US port... And before anyone else mentions jobs for US citizens, ask yourselves why most of the ships that deliver imports are non-US registered and crewed by non-US citizens? Seems that the authorities want to make it difficult, no that should be really hard for the legals so that no one raises the difficult question about illegals Slightly off topic, I see that Britain's Heathrow has now overtaken JFK and LA as the worlds most inhospitable airport - 3 hours to get through immigration is a joke in any country.
You need to study Objectivism, The "Capitalism" you blame is really a Mixed Economy. True-blue Capitalism is built on three tenets..... Freedom, Individualism and of course Capitalism. It was practised in it's true form in the last 50 years of the 19th century and this country has been coasting along on that wave ever since. Seriously, do you even know ANYTHING about history?
It is not going to be cheaper to operate? So why do it 12 miles out? This statement says it all. - - will help fill that gap with international workers who were previously unable to stay in the U.S. for lack of a work visa. - - So it goes back to my origional point, they intend to operate around current visa restrictions by being in international waters. They cannot make a statement like that and claim they will operate within US laws.
Off-shore drilling and fracking should NOT be stopped. They should be expanded, or at the VERY least, left alone to do their jobs.
First of all, the Marshals are US territory. If it is flagged there, then certain US laws would already apply, and certainly Congress could indeed change those laws. The FAQ begrudgingly mentions this. Also, the FAQ makes it sound as if daily jaunts up and down the coast will be the norm. I don't think so. Like any ship that comes and anchors off the US coast, passengers and crew will have to enter the US through an international port of entry, including going through customs. 90 minutes from the ship to dining in San Fran....not happening. Since BlueSeed allows anyone in, it would be an easy way for a foreign terrorist to gain entry, so security on BlueSeed entries will be higher than usual. There are several things that, while technically true, will not in practice be quite as nice as the FAQ portrays. If Californians happen to decide that BlueSeed is damaging some ecological niche, then the US will be well within UNCLOS in forcing BlueSeed to move. It is a two-way street. Who would BlueSeed turn to if the US, for whatever reason, decided to force them to move?
What happen if someone blows up their island in international waters, since they are not really part of any country what happens. Right now if country ABC destroys country XYZ ship they will have to worry about country XYZ's response. Since this island doesn't want any national identity, so they can set own rules, who will come to their defense. I would say don't call us, you don't like our system. If system is diffcult to work with, help make changes that are needed. They are just looking for loophole to exploit for their gain. Companies now days thing society owes them something, they pretend they don't use infrastruction that is paid for by everybody Cities fighting cities for business's to move to them is the worst thing to every happen. To many sweetheart deals have spoiled companies, they believe they no longer have to help pay for improvements.
The "Job openings due to growth and replacements" column is PROJECTED, for the ten years between 2010 and 2020. So, 1) it's a bunch of gov't BS, not actual data; and 2) these are not UNFILLED positions. The TRUTH is, that between 2010 and 2012, the years for which we have ACTUAL DATA, there is UNEMPLOYMENT and UNDEREMPLOYMENT among people with technical training. Granted, it's not as bad as in the general population, but there is certainly no shortage of technically trained workers.
Between 2010 and 2010 there is no years, much less a decade. Maybe 2000 and 2010 is the decade you are looking for.
It is NOT cheaper to operate, but their costs will be comparable to commercial real estate prices in Silicon Valley. BlueSeed will comply with all laws in effect beyond the 12 mile contiguous zone, which is recognized by UNCLOS. They will also observe and comply with all U.S. laws within the 12 mile contiguous zone when moving staff to and from the mainland. They even plan to fund the establishment of a brand new U.S. Customs office in Half Moon Bay to assist in processing travellers from the BlueSeed site to meetings in Silicon Valley and operate their ferry service. The BlueSeed legal team has reviewed all factors that come into play for operating this way, and are pretty sure they won't have any issues around this. If you have a law degree and specialize in maritime legal issues, you may be able to argue differently, but I kind of doubt that is the case.
We "stupidly pay to protect shipping lanes around the globe for these companies"? STUPIDLY? And just who do you propose should do the job, if not us? China? They can't; their navy isn't up to it, and even if it was, do you HONESTLY think they'd do so without making things harder for their competitors, namely us? If you do, you don't understand the Chinese AT ALL. Should it be left to private military forces? That's an equally horrible idea, and I'm sure you can think of thousands of reasons why. Defending the shipping lanes IS defending our country. It's not an illegitimate use of US sea power to keep the sea lanes open for free trade. I'd argue that it is of the essence of the LEGITIMATE uses of sea power. If not that, WHAT is?
That is not true. If the ship is attacked, then it will depend on who attacks it. If any foreign power were to attack it, then it would trigger a response from the US because of the Monroe Doctrine. So that will just not happen. If criminals attack, then it will be up to the nation under which the ship is flagged.
People don't LIVE on cruise ships and those ships are transport, not stationary. This place would be a man-made island and have all the same issues as any sovereign country. Will the Marshall Islands or the Bahamas protect them (from attack or natural disasters) while they're located 12 miles off the US coast? No, the US would have to rescue them.
It was worth it to have huge fleet to protect the world sea lanes when we built things here and exported them across the planet. Now they mostly protect the oil coming here. China would not be doing so well financially if they had to support a global fleet to protect the products they ship across the world. Even now China is finding out how expensive it is to operate a navy large enough to protect their own coastline from pirates. The old USSR learned that lesson the hard way when they tried to build a fleet to match ours in the 1970s and 1980s.
Do the Marshall Islands or Bahamas, police shipping lanes? That would be NO. They fly these flags because these countries are great tax havens. If someone attacks this floating city, and you tell them there will be hell to pay from Bahamas or Marshall Islands, your best hope is that they die from laughing. Because there is no army or navy coming. Protection costs money. Check out USA Defense Budget. We already stupidly pay to protect shipping lanes around the globe for these companies, do not be surprised when they ask USA to protect floating island even if they fly foreign flag. BlueSeed website answers are all written by overpaid lawyers, who will write anything and then lobby congress to make rules which, will we be no jail time, a small fine where they admit no wrong doing their part. They will follow this well plowed path that the Banks and Wall Street has used to do whatever they wish and not have to worry any consequences.
Did you even bother to read the BlueSeed website's FAQ? All your questions are answered right there. They are NOT setting their own rules. They will operate under the current UNCLOS treaty. They will be sanctioned under a flag of convenience, exactly the same way all cruise ships are flagged. They have approached the Marshall Islands and the Bahamas for flag authority, so they will be under the laws of the country that provides this service. This is a practice that has been going on for over a hundred years, so there's no new precedent set by this method of operation. In the unlikely event "someone blows up their island," they will either prevent such attacks from occuring or face the consequences of aggression. They don't expect any country besides their flagged nation to defend them, nor do they expect any country to attack them, but they are certainly going to be prepared for just about any circumstance, no matter how improbable.