Monday, February 2, 2015

Food For Thought: Is Silicon Valley Letting the Nation Down?

“This town used to think big—the integrated circuit, personal computers, the Internet. Are we really leveraging all that intellectual power and creativity creating Instagram and dating apps? Is this truly going to change the world?”

A vital essay of why U.S. companies are no longer taking on the big, important projects. I believe this is one of the reason middle-class jobs are not being created at the rate they used to be. Please read the whole thing


  1. Hey Mike. Resident naysayer here again. You pulled the sidebar from the article and posted it in your blog to make your point. Fortunately, I can pull content from the article and post it here to make my point:

    if you put that argument to many investors and technologists here, you get a reasonable comeback: has Silicon Valley really ever set out to directly address big problems?

    In every "wave" as identified in the article, did *we* as a consumer ever think we needed something that Silly Valley was producing. No. But damn if we don't use it and wonder how we'd live without it.

  2. Fair enough, Brian. The iPhone solved real problems (how to get a precision storm warning to someone on the move). A new dating app probably does not.

  3. Mike, the iPhone was not invented to solve the problem of delivering a precision storm warning to someone on the move. As the article says (actually, right after the part I posted...)

    In fact, the classic Valley approach has been to size up which technologies it can quickly and ambitiously advance, and then let the world make of them what it will.

    Indeed, we can look at most Silly Valley advances and realize they were NOT geared towards solving "BIG" problems. Their innovations have permitted *others* to solve "BIG" problems. With every wave there's excess - your point about dating apps is well made - but the excess has a way of weeding itself out.

    Thanks for linking this article.


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