I've noticed two trends regarding industrial computer science research: 1. There seems to be few companies investing in computer science research, and even fewer of them run research labs that are less focused on immediate productization and are more focused on medium- and long-term projects. The only lab I could think of that is run like the 1970's-era Bell Labs or Xerox PARC is Microsoft Research, and even there I've heard that the lab has more pressure to commercialize their results than in the past, though I may be wrong. 2. Companies typically expand their research labs whenever they are doing well, and they typically cut back on research or even abandon research entirely whenever they are not doing well (e.g., the shutdown of Apple's Advanced Technology Group in 1997).
I understand that in today's world people should not expect to stay with one company for their entire careers, and that people should be prepared to possibly change careers during their working years. I'm wondering what is some good advice for people outside of the tenure-track to stay involved in the research community even in the face of downturns. I have been laid off from a similar job a few years ago and it took a long time to find another job in a research environment.