Behold, the best cities for tech workers: Where does SF rank?

Rankings based on what really matters: Pay, coffee, weed, sex, baseball, and gaming

The average annual tech salary in the Bay Area is nearly $158,654. That’s according to PitchBook data that found San Francisco is still a very good place for startups. Eye-catching stat, but what does that mean? What jobs are we talking about? Are CEO jobs jacking that up? The stat originally came from the jobs site Indeed, so I punched in data to find the best pay for senior product managers, the most available job in San Francisco, and elsewhere. Here are the rankings for The City and other tech hubs:

— San Francisco: $161,212

— Seattle: $145,191

— Denver: $137, 201

— Boston: $128,597

— Austin: $127,548

— Portland: $123,302

But that still doesn’t really tell the whole story, does it? Those salaries have to be factored with cost of living. And then, what about the things those cities have to offer? OK, OK, relax. I haven’t brought you this far to drop you on your head. I have done all the work for you by researching the only things that really matter — pay, cost of living, coffee, weed, sex, baseball, and gaming. Now, I realize that baseball doesn’t rate with these other crucial necessities for all tech workers, but if you’re in The City right now and you aren’t following the Giants’ epic pennant race, you’re dead inside.

I found cost of living from NerdWallet, rankings of cities with the best coffee from Wallethub, rankings of cities with the best sex lives from PinkCherry, rankings of cities that are best for gaming from The Fox magazine, rankings of cities with the best weed from Lawnstarter, and ranked the cities on baseball from the MLB standings.

Here are the top cities for techies, based on our sources’ rankings of the cities in each category. San Francisco finished first in pay and baseball team’s record, second in coffee, third in gaming, and last in cost of living, according to our sources. We gave the rankings numerical values, added them up for each city, and those combined rankings put The City on top. Then came Seattle, Denver, Boston, Austin. By these highly scientific rankings of the Screenshots Tech City Index, you shouldn’t move. You’re welcome.

Graphic of highly scientific tech city ranking. (Graphic by Jeff Elder/The Examiner)

Graphic of highly scientific tech city ranking. (Graphic by Jeff Elder/The Examiner)

But, wait: What about Los Angeles, you ask? C’mon, you know we #BEATLA…

You might remember that a few weeks ago the conservative scholars at Stanford’s Hoover Institution erroneously reported that Apple moved its headquarters to Austin, then blamed Apple for hiding its 176-acre Cupertino headquarters, which is 14 miles away from Hoover Tower. The institution took Apple off its list of companies that have supposedly fled California, but it turns out that was not the only bogus listing. The report, written by a “relocation coach” based in Texas, also claimed Affirm, the fintech company with headquarters on California Street, moved to Pittsburgh. Not so, the company told me…

OFFICE SPACE WITH GG BRIDGE VIEW. PERFECT FOR COMMUTERS: If this van’s a-workin’, don’t come a-lurkin’. Welcome to the van office of Kenzo Fong, founder and CEO of Rock, an all-in-one platform for distributed work. (Translation: Helps far-apart workers collaborate and communicate.) The S.F. startup has some heavy-hitter investors: Section 32 VC Bill Maris, angel investors Manik Gupta (ex-Uber chief product officer), Aadil Mamujee (head of product at WordPress) and Marc Vanlerberghe (ex-Google VP). Rock has employees in 10 countries across seven time zones. Fong works from his mobile office/Sprinter van at scenic locales around the Bay Area…

Henry Kissinger and Eric Schmidt have written a book with MIT computer pioneer Daniel Huttenlocher on artificial intelligence. My advice: Wait for the movie and hope it has more car chases. Excerpt: “Aristotle’s sweeping classification of knowledge, Ptolemy’s pioneering geography, and Lucretius’s “On the Nature of Things” spoke to an essential confidence in the human mind’s capacity to discover and understand at least substantial aspects of the world.” Hot stuff. Reminds me of a joke:

Tailor in ancient Greece looking at customer’s torn toga: Euripides?

Customer: Yeah. Euminides?…

Map of enforcements against Airbnb properties. (Office of Short-Term Rentals Map)

Map of enforcements against Airbnb properties. (Office of Short-Term Rentals Map)

The City’s issues with Airbnbs run really high in District 3 — the upper bright corner of The City, composed of North Beach, Chinatown, Nob Hill, Russian Hill, Civic Center, Tenderloin and the Financial District. That’s according to City Hall’s Office of Short Term Rentals, which presented to the Supes this week. And that’s interesting because there aren’t that many up there. Airbnbs are much more densely concentrated in Bernal Heights, The Mission and The Castro. Maybe they just don’t complain as much about parties there…

ENOUGH WITH THE FAMILY TIME: “Men, and particularly men who live with children under 18 would like to work from home less often after the pandemic,” Stanford economist Nick Bloom found in recent research on remote work. Easy, dads, easy…

Editor’s note: Welcome to Screenshots, in which senior tech reporter Jeff Elder reports on the comings and goings of S.F.’s biggest industry. Stay tuned as we keep tabs on all things tech. Send items and photos to

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