Tuesday, November 21, 2006
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Greed and envy are good
This New York Times story by Katie Hafner seems pretty upfront in making this point:
Envy may be a sin in some books, but it is a powerful driving force in Silicon Valley, where technical achievements are admired but financial payoffs are the ultimate form of recognition. And now that the YouTube purchase has amplified talk of a second dot-com boom, many high-tech entrepreneurs — successful and not so successful — are examining their lives as measured against upstarts who have made it bigger....posted by Dan on 11.21.06 at 08:46 AM
Well, kind of a superficial take on a very superficial article.
Much of the envy here is because there's so little to separate video sharing site A from video sharing site B, or Google employee #100 from Googler #10000. Easy to see the only difference as luck, or timing, or both. Easy for just about anyone in Silicon Valley to think, "That coulda/shoulda been me, dammit!".
But while this kind of greed and envy, like that of the late 90's, may be a "powerful driving force" in the creation of 40 dating web sites, or 20 B2B exchange companies, it's harder to argue that the truly major innovations in high tech have been driven by the same forces. I mean, if the people who actually invented the Internet had had the option or inclination to drop out of grad school and make $millions selling pet food online, how good would that have been?posted by: lewp on 11.21.06 at 08:46 AM [permalink]
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