Mike Isaac

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Twitter Acquires Tech Training Company Marakana, Kicks Off Engineer Education Program

twitter_educationClass is now in session, Tweeps.

Twitter debuted its “Twitter University” initiative on Tuesday, essentially a way to help its engineering corps bulk up on technical skills through a series of in-house classes taught by Twitter employees.

To that end, the company announced that it had acquired Marakana, a San Francisco-based company working on open-source training for engineers interested in developing new programming skills. The new hires that come with the team, including founders Marko and Sasa Gargenta, will spearhead the teaching effort.

The initiative isn’t an entirely new concept to the microblogging company. “We currently offer employees a whole swath of technical trainings, from orientation classes for new engineers to iOS Bootcamp, JVM Fundamentals, Distributed Systems, Scala School, and more for those who want to develop new skills,” SVP of engineering Chris Fry wrote in a company blog post.

It’s also not exactly new to tech companies on the whole. Facebook has long run its own engineering “boot camp,” and currently offers a series of crash courses in mobile engineering to engineers who wish to participate. (To be fair, Facebook contracted the services of “Big Nerd Ranch” to do so; Twitter bought an entire company.)

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik