Thursday, March 20, 2008

Ten Years in Silicon Valley

Originally written Dec 31, 2007:

Dec 31, 1997 - Dec 31, 2007: Ten Years in Silicon Valley

My Top Ten Silicon Valley Memories of the Past Ten Years.

10. Riding on top of a Battlebot in the parking lot yelling yee-haw ala Slim Pickens in Dr Strangelove.
9. Star Trek parties with my neighbors, who converted their family room into a star ship bridge, complete with giant view screen, captain's chairs, working computer terminals, simulated ion tubing, and the latest in lite-brite display technology.
8. Early admittance to the vintage arcade festival, where I played Asteroids in front of a wall of cheesy 80s music videos.
7. Playing with some of the first portable MP3 players. They held like 5 or 10 songs!
6. Late night at a Dot-Com Launch Party, holding a ten foot length of drink tickets acquired from Jello Biafra, buying drinks for every increasingly attractive girl in the place and yelling, "Oh yeah! The stock market hasn't been this good since 1928!"
5. Talking to a Palm Pilot engineer about the new Palm III, looking and opening exactly like a Star Trek communicator, with sound effects, asking whether it was really quite nerdy enough. And if you must know, I had the IIIe Special Edition. With sound effects.
4. Telling Steve Wozniak -- notorious prankster -- about a computer prank I liked to pull when I was a kid.
3. Summer 1999, Friday, 5pm, sitting outside our downtown office, sipping wine and discussing the past, present and future of the web.
2. Late nights, coding furiously, hopped up on organic Kona coffee (Rooster Farms, one of our early e-commerce customers, paid us in coffee).

And finally, my top silicon valley memory of the past ten years...

1. Driving into a parking lot in Stanford for the first time around 2pm on New Year's Eve, dreaming of the future.

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