I think technologists are often less likely to think about the more abstract arts, which is a shame. Having a poet in residence at a place like Caltech, while apparently at times challenging for the poet, I think is a wonderful idea.
Also, "Urinetown: The Musical" is a comedic Malthusian commentary on mismanaging resources, leading to a dystopian future.
Don't feel bad about not knowing the poem. The poem "All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace" I originally found from music. There's a group, or was anyway, named "Machines of Loving Grace". I found that through a classic bad computer movie (by which I mean a pretty good movie with bad representations of computers) -- they have a song on the "Hackers" soundtrack. I liked the soundtrack a lot, and was familiar with most of the other acts on it. I liked their song "Richest Junkie Still Alive" so much I researched the group, and was intrigued with the name which lead me to Brautigan.