In the shadow of "AngelGate", Graphic.ly CEO Micah Baldwin wrote a good post today ("Entrepreneur at the Door; Angel at the Gate") about the risk taking nature of The Valley, "the rise of the Super Angel", and how investors/advisors add real value. It's a good read and you should definitely check it out. But I wanted to say a little something about the part of Micah's piece where he talks about the Valley and what makes it unique. In his words:"The Valley has long been an echo chamber that relies on its own ability to drink its own kool-aide and believe in its own self-worth. I know, I grew up there.
The genius of that environment is that risk is part of the culture, and if you are not a risk-taker, then you are ejected from its bosom, and left to fend for yourself outside of the community. But, if you are willing to take risk — real risk, not the I will dip my toe in the risk waters risk — you are welcomed with open arms, even when you fail.
That basic belief is what makes the Silicon Valley unique and different."
Approximately 15 months ago I moved to The Valley from Minneapolis (which is an awesome city) to speak at the first organized Twitter conference (140TC) in Mountain View. The idea was that I'd spend the summer out here to see if my Twitter related business idea could be nurtured and to see what was so special about this place.
The quality of the people I've met, the unbridled positive energy of the community, and the breadth and scope of the opportunities available is beyond description. The summer came and went and there was no question that I was not going back to Minnesota. There was just too much "awesome" going on here.
With that as a backdrop, here's the best way I've come up with to describe this place:
Silicon Valley is the home of a massive army of self-selecting, hallucinogenic, non-conforming, entrepreneurial mutants.
After years of searching, I've finally found my tribe.