While we seem to be rife with OT threads, I thought I'd throw in an OT 
question that's been percolating in my mind for quite a while.

Where do you recommend to live? Feel free to provide just a city name, 
or to go into detail. When I say "for a programmer," I'm mainly 
referring to the existence of programming jobs, but other aspects, such 
as the existence of ?UGs, proximity to nerdy attractions, etc. could 
play a part. Also feel free to just tell me some places to look for 
ideas, and then tell me to Get to Googlin'. :)

Obviously, the usual places show up: Silicon Valley, Wash DC (where I am 
now), *insert big city here* -- any info you have about why you would or 
wouldn't recommend one of these would be appreciated. I'm also looking 
for places that are off-the-beaten path (but still accessible, so 
Fraser, B.C. is out of the question, sorry) -- Portland, OR and even 
Bend, OR seem to be attracting techies, for example. Why? Should I be 
interested, too? Why or why not? I have preference towards places in the 
US, but if you have hometown pride, you are of course welcome to give it 
shoutout. :)

For the short term, I'm stuck here earning a living, and for the medium 
term, I'm probably going to go where my long-time friends are, in Calif. 
(SF? SB? LA? SD? not sure), but I'm trying to plan ahead a little more 
than I have in the past, so am hoping to build an arsenal of info. You 
guys are the best group I could think to ask.

I'll provide a little about DC, in fairness to y'all, and maybe as a 
template.
1. The housing market here is ridiculously expensive. I think it might 
be going down a *little* soon, but yikes, it's high.
2. It's probably because high tech jobs are in high supply here. Gov't 
contracting is the name of the game, and while you probably won't be 
using Agile methodologies to build the Next Big Thing, you'll at least 
have a fairly well-paying and steady job.
3. Weather's not fantastic. Temperate climates. Warm for its latitude 
because of some sort of wind thing. Generally pretty cloudy during the 
Spring/Fall, though, due to its proximity to the water.
4. Traffic sucks. Combine that with the fact that you can only afford to 
live in the boonies and you've got a recipe for un-fun.
5. Entertainment is pretty decent, if you don't mind the traffic it 
takes to get there. We've got the Kennedy Center in DC, Nissan Pavillion 
out west in Warrenton, VA, all sorts of jazz, bars, etc. and DC is 
obviously a pretty popular place for artists to include as part of a 
national/regional tour. We've got fantastic museums and art galleries, 
many of which are free.
6. There's a very good variety of decent restaurants, and some very good 
ones. Of course, for any genre X of food, there's apparently some city Y 
that produces better X. Oh well. :)
7. It's a big, suburban region. You're not going to see any "sense of 
belonging" to the DC area, in people. You're not going to find that 
'cept for probably way in the city (where it's urban), or way out (where 
it's rural, in which case you'll find the annual Nokesville festival, or 
whatever).
8. I may be full of it.

I shut up now.

Thanks,
Devin