And of course, at some point someone mentions that a recruiter at Apple contacted them about a team in Cupertino that needs some good developers. And hey, why not interview with them?
This happens fairly frequently.
There are lots of developers in this area, which might be unsurprising because we've got Microsoft, Amazon, Adobe, Google, various game companies, etc. But there's also a very large group of Cocoa developers in the area, though I'm not sure why exactly. Maybe it's because we have long dark winters and as long as it's miserable outside- well, you might as well learn this Cocoa stuff. Maybe it's the fresh air, or the mountains, or something else that I'm not thinking of.
So when Apple says "Hey, we've got a job down in Cupertino", the usual response is "Uh, that's great. I'm going to stay here thank you very much". And then Apple says "But, this is Apple. We're changing the world." and the developer responds "Yea, but have you seen housing and rent prices down there? And it's pretty awesome in Seattle- you couldn't pay me enough to move. Besides, Seattle is the fastest growing big city in the country, why don't you open up an office here?".
Yea, why doesn't Apple open an office in Seattle?
I know the usual responses: secrecy, being face to face is important, it is against Apple's DNA. But you know what? Apple needs quality developers in a bad way, so I think it's time for that special DNA to evolve.
Hire a manager, and open an Apple developer office in Seattle. There are plenty of places across the country where Apple has offices for historical reasons or acquisitions. Why not have a remote office on purpose this time?
Then you could quietly steal the best and brightest from MS, Adobe, and wherever. And you just solved a big part of your hiring problem.
* Flying Meat is doing awesome btw. So I'm not looking to join Apple. I just look around at all the talented people in the area, and I think Apple should do something about it.