Silicon Valley's Coming of Age

Book - 2017
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A narrative history of the Silicon Valley generation that launched five major high-tech industries in seven years details the specific contributions of seven technical pioneers and how they established the foundation for today's tech-driven world.
"At a time when the five most valuable companies on the planet are high-tech firms and nearly half of Americans say they cannot live without their cell phones, Troublemakers reveals the untold story of how we got here. This is the gripping tale of seven exceptional men and women, pioneers of Silicon Valley in the 1970s and early 1980s. Together, they worked across generations, industries, and companies to bring technology from Pentagon offices and university laboratories to the rest of us. In doing so, they changed the world. In Troublemakers, historian Leslie Berlin introduces the people and stories behind the birth of the Internet and the microprocessor, as well as Apple, Atari, Genentech, Xerox PARC, ROLM, ASK, and the iconic venture capital firms Sequoia Capital and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. In the space of only seven years and thirty-five miles, five major industries--personal computing, video games, biotechnology, modern venture capital, and advanced semiconductor logic--were born. Featured among innovators such as Steve Jobs, Larry Ellison, and Don Valentine are Mike Markkula, Apple Computer's first chairman; Bob Taylor, who kick-started the Arpanet and masterminded the personal computer; Sandra Kurtzig, the first woman to take a technology company public; Al Alcorn, the engineer behind the first wildly successful video game; Fawn Alvarez, who rose from an assembler on a factory line to the executive suite; and Niels Reimers, who changed how university innovations reach the public. These troublemakers rewrote the rules and invented the future."--Dust jacket flap.
Publisher: New York :, Simon & Schuster,, 2017.
Edition: First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781451651508
Branch Call Number: 306.0979473 BE
Characteristics: xvi, 494 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm


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Feb 26, 2018

What a good book. History is people's stories and Berlin chose her people well. These fantastic stories start when there were zero personal computers in the world, when there were no software companies, no video games, and no bio-technology. Even the words that would define these industries had not been invented. Every computer user, businessman, manager, and entrepreneur will love the book. It reads quickly. Almost like a serial. You can hardly wait to hear what happens next. You'll love it.
BTW Herb Boyer is no relation.

Jan 11, 2018

Fun read. I like the mix of people chosen by the author to follow. Berlin follows some well known and others less well known from their start through today. You get a feel for the challenges many of the challenges each person faced. While some businesses continued to succeed, others - Atari, Xerox, ASK - either died or faded away. The historical backdrop makes this a fascinating read.


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