Posts tagged "silicon valley"
San Francisco was built on a sand bank on top of a fault line which is the worst idea, but even after 1906 everybody pretty much said ‘lol fuck it, too late’ and kept going.
(via lol my thesis: Summing up years of work in one sentence)
One of the reasons that Silicon Valley exists is that we have all worked next to somebody who has gone off and been successful. We know firsthand that the guy next to us that went off and was very successful was an idiot.
Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari
Burning Man… has become a place where CEOs, venture capitalists and startuppers can network (while wearing, at most, swimsuits). While neither money, branding nor barter are allowed, suddenly companies are getting funded, co-founders are meeting, and people are getting jobs right on the playa. Among the 68,000 costumed and dust-covered attendees are some unexpected names - Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg goes. So do Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page. And Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk. Anarchists parking Priuses next to ramshackle tents and tarps are now sharing the sand with wealthy techies arriving, via private jets, at luxury desert camps fully staffed with cooks, masseuses and assistants…

‘It’s hard to be a billionaire at Burning Man, even though there are so many of them.’
Burning Man becomes a hot spot for tech titans 
Five of the six most-visited websites in the world are [in Silicon Valley], in ranked order: Facebook, Google, YouTube (which Google owns), Yahoo! and Wikipedia. (Number five is a Chinese-language site.) If corporations founded by Stanford alumni were to form an independent nation, it would be the tenth largest economy in the world, with an annual revenue of $2.7 trillion, as some professors at that university recently calculated. Another new report says: ‘If the internet was a country, its gross domestic product would eclipse all others but four within four years.’
Diary: Google Invades · LRB 
This is a culture that has created many new ways for us to contact one another and atrophied most of the old ones, notably speaking to the people around you.
Diary: Google Invades · LRB 
The technology industry, by sequestering itself from the community it inhabits, has transformed the Bay Area without being changed by it—in a sense, without getting its hands dirty… Technology can be an answer to incompetence and inefficiency. But it has little to say about larger issues of justice and fairness, unless you think that political problems are bugs that can be fixed by engineering rather than fundamental conflicts of interest and value.
How the Tech Industry Is Quietly Changing the Face of American Cities (quote from The New Yorker)
We live in a bubble, and I don’t mean a tech bubble or a valuation bubble. I mean a bubble as in our own little world.
Eric Schmidt | America’s New Oligarchs 
The spread of computers and the Internet will put jobs in two categories. People who tell computers what to do, and people who are told by computers what to do.
Marc Andreessen | How the internet is making us poor – Quartz
The Crazy Details About How Apple Is Going To Construct Its $5 Billion Spaceship HQ 

Peter Burrows at Bloomberg Businessweek has new details on the construction of the building. It may not have been an Apple product like the iPhone or the iPad, but it still got the same treatment from Jobs’ obsessive eye for detail.
Here’s a sample of Jobs’ specifications:
Burrows says, “Jobs wanted no seam, gap, or paintbrush stroke showing.”
He wanted everything “polished to a supernatural smoothness.”
Wood used inside the building is to come from a specific type of maple tree, and it can only be “heartwood,” which is the wood from the center of the tree.
It will have six-square kilometers of bent glass, which will be bent at a factory in Germany, then shipped to California. The company doing the glass had to develop new machines for making it.
Apple will pre-build bathrooms and cubicle banks then have them driven to the office and installed. This saves time and allows the construction to be more exact.
Jobs didn’t want concrete floors, he wanted “a stone-infused alternative such as terrazzo, buffed to a sheen normally reserved for museums and high-end residences,” says Burrows.
Jobs also wanted the seams where walls met to be 1/32 of an inch across, whereas the standard for construction is 1/8 of inch.
He wanted the ceiling to be polished concrete instead of sound absorbing material. Apple also has a very specific plan for the concrete ceiling. It wants to pour ceiling molds on the ground, then lift it to the ceiling, an approach that is far more expensive.

The Crazy Details About How Apple Is Going To Construct Its $5 Billion Spaceship HQ 

Peter Burrows at Bloomberg Businessweek has new details on the construction of the building. It may not have been an Apple product like the iPhone or the iPad, but it still got the same treatment from Jobs’ obsessive eye for detail.

Here’s a sample of Jobs’ specifications:

  • Burrows says, “Jobs wanted no seam, gap, or paintbrush stroke showing.”
  • He wanted everything “polished to a supernatural smoothness.”
  • Wood used inside the building is to come from a specific type of maple tree, and it can only be “heartwood,” which is the wood from the center of the tree.
  • It will have six-square kilometers of bent glass, which will be bent at a factory in Germany, then shipped to California. The company doing the glass had to develop new machines for making it.
  • Apple will pre-build bathrooms and cubicle banks then have them driven to the office and installed. This saves time and allows the construction to be more exact.
  • Jobs didn’t want concrete floors, he wanted “a stone-infused alternative such as terrazzo, buffed to a sheen normally reserved for museums and high-end residences,” says Burrows.
  • Jobs also wanted the seams where walls met to be 1/32 of an inch across, whereas the standard for construction is 1/8 of inch.
  • He wanted the ceiling to be polished concrete instead of sound absorbing material. Apple also has a very specific plan for the concrete ceiling. It wants to pour ceiling molds on the ground, then lift it to the ceiling, an approach that is far more expensive.
By far the bulk of the activity in the last eight years or so has happened in San Francisco. Facebook’s location on the Peninsula has been an outlier. The rest of the large companies are old Valley names like Intel, Cisco, Yahoo, and even wonkier names you wouldn’t recognize.

This shift to the North is precisely what’s caused the handwringing over whether we should embrace our inner Manhattan. As the city government works to keep companies like Salesforce and Twitter and Zynga in “the city” — for the first time in Valley history — no one knows where on earth the employees are going to live. We’re already north of 90 percent occupancy.

Meanwhile, take a look at those companies in the Peninsula and South Bay. They aren’t located in high-rises either. They are large, sprawling campuses with their own parks and gyms and car washes and convenience stores. They are in no way hubs of any budding urban ecosystem. They are self-contained, gated (via scannable badges) fiefdoms that have more in common with old coal mining towns of yore than the headquarters of say, Conde Nast or a Wall Street mega-bank.
New York isn’t the next Silicon Valley, and San Francisco isn’t the new Manhattan
San Francisco’s fundamental problem is that it’s a big city that likes to think of itself as a small one. The city proper is about 46 square miles in area. That’s 40% larger than Manhattan. But even with recent growth, there are only 812,000 people in San Francisco, which is half as many as Manhattan. San Francisco’s population density is about 17,000 people per square mile. Manhattan and Paris have more than 60,000 people per square mile.

How do those international capitals manage to house so many more people? Their skylines make it obvious: They’ve built large commercial and residential office buildings, and they’ve built public services — transportation systems, especially — to make density inhabitable. Now look at San Francisco. Other than a cluster of new buildings in the South of Market area, this city is defined by, and reveres, its famous Victorian houses. Those houses are very pretty. They’re also very inefficient. Collectively, they take up a lot of space, but don’t house very many people.
San Francisco can become a world capital. First it needs to get over itself
Take That, Tokyo! San Francisco Approves 220-Square-Foot ‘Micro-Apartments’ | Wired.com 
“We need to create more affordable housing in the city, we need to create more housing generally. We’ve never created enough in the city, and we’re paying the price for that now with incredibly high prices.”

Take That, Tokyo! San Francisco Approves 220-Square-Foot ‘Micro-Apartments’ | Wired.com 

“We need to create more affordable housing in the city, we need to create more housing generally. We’ve never created enough in the city, and we’re paying the price for that now with incredibly high prices.”

I currently lead marketing for the New York office of Definition 6. Master's in Digital Media from Georgia Tech. ATL->SFO->NYC.

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