A year in silicon valley
It’s been A year and month or so since I moved from India to Silicon Valley . It’s been rollercoaster ride for sure. The transition from Bangalore to Bay area hasn’t been easier, here are the 5 thing I noticed or learnt
Spend on Experiences, it makes you richer: I work and move around with colleagues who are in younger demo graphics, but I think they have richer experience than I do. Many of them live on tighter budgets, but they seem to spend on experiences. They invest in sail boats to latest Gizmos and spend endless hours passionately restoring something. They live more carefree than I do.
Almost Everyone want’s to build next big thing: Although I have seen herd mentality back in India when everyone wants to enroll in same college or follow the same foot steps, I feel here it is more Amplified. Almost everyone want to build Uber for X, Chatbot for Y or tinder for Z. I have met many passionate people focused on weak ideas or mislead by short gains, and it’s terrifying to me that they are willing to put so much money and energy on those ideas. I am more convinced than ever before that we need to make technology address human problems.
Easy to see the change that will Impact the world: This is almost opposite of previous point. Companies like FB, Google, Uber and other startups are innovating and creating the pieces of tech that is going to drive next generation of innovation. Some of these innovation are going to create lot of turmoil as world needs to shift in adapting or accepting this . AI/Machine learning which as taken up considerable front seat in tech is going to change we interact with every thing . I have not felt so anxious in my own ability to adapt to these changes. I am trying as much as I can to learn and listen.
It’s all about the Network: I was big proponent of building the network, I have seen it help me immensely in my career. I feel whole silicon valley is focused on this Networking. It’s more profound here than any other place I have been in my professional career . Right kind of people will open right door for you and it pays to be extrovert here. If you make effort you will meet lot of right people who are extremely good and passionate in what they do. Many of them are ready to share knowledge and experiences if you are willing to ask and learn. I love this part of being here and having access to so many talented people .
More people will stay in rented houses and will retire to uncertain future: This seems to be underlying theme of society in US not specific to silicon valley. Housing is super expensive and not everyone is earning 300k or to going exit with million dollars here in Silicon valley to afford house . Younger generation although well educated here in valley finds hard to get stable and long lasting career. As they are exiting colleges with huge loans, I really feel they have most uncertain future of all previous generation . Lack of focus in younger generation,choices and avenues that are available for them to spend makes to much order to plan .
Although many other things I have learnt through experiences of mine in past year, but one thing I have realized for sure is that SiliconValley and it’s people are not reflective of general society in USA.