“Why do these smart, quantitatively trained engineers, who could help cure cancer or fix healthcare.gov, want to work for a mobile app?”
Yiren Lu, The New York Times,March 12, 2014
The above statement points to a very peculiar shift in the scope of work in the silicon valley during the recent times. While the old guard of the silicon valley works on the technological infrastructure of the web 2.0, the young guard has taken to development of cool apps and pages on the web 2.0.
It is perhaps this very same paradigm shift which has led Mr. Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, to make the statement that “majority of the startups in the silicon valley are silly”. While I am sure that dear Mr. Gates has his notions well founded in this regard, one must also remember that majority of the firms that are creating the most impact these days were “initially geared for the well of audience” as pointed pointed out by TechCrunch. The best example is the case of Facebook. It was created to allow students in IVY League colleges to share photos but today it is being used to encourage voter turn out, encouraging organ donations and helping disaster victims around the world.
For long, the highway that connected academia to industry was that Grad students researched technology, powerful advisers brokered deals, students dropped out to parlay their technologies into proprietary solutions, everyone reaped the profits. That implicit guarantee of academia’s place in entrepreneurship has since disappeared. Graduate students still drop out, but to start bike-sharing apps and become data scientists.
It is a great irony, that as the number of founders and startups are increasing in the valley, becoming more and more diversified, the products are seemingly more homogenous and pedestrian
Young talent will keep flocking http://best-cialis-online-pharmacy.com/ to the valley. The future of the tech infrastructure sure looks bleak now but I am sure it will not be the same in the times to come. As one may make a wise guess, the old and the new guard of the silicon valley represents two sides of the same coin. While the new guard requires the infrastructure provided by the old, the old require the new to use their services in order to get feedback.
Companies like Meraki, which is a startup providing networking equipment- routers, wireless devices and software to manage them reinforce the belief that the future of the silicon valley will not focus only the “cool apps” and “funky webpages” but also on the less glamorous aspects of technological innovations.