By Douglas Latimer, Director, Start Something.
Eight years ago, Facebook was a startup. Sixteen years ago Google was a research project by a couple of Stanford students. Thirty-six years ago, Apple didn’t exist.
Silicon Valley is just a little bit different than the rest of the world. Home to Adobe, Apple, eBay, Intel, Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Yahoo! and thousands of other high tech companies, no place on earth has quite the same environment or wealth of industry leaders. When you think of the Valley, those giants of tech and innovation come to mind quickly, and it’s hard to recall, that not long ago, they were all startups.
They all had their roots in a garage or computer lab, went through trials and tribulations and persevered. Clearly, not everyone is destined to become the next Steve Jobs, and yet, I think it’s important to remember that even the people who found their way to the top, had to start somewhere.
They started with an idea that they believed in. A passion that would not dissipate. And they never quit. They bent to the demands of the costumer and the whims of the world and gave us what we wanted. Things we ended up not knowing how we ever lived without. These leaders have helped us solve problems and enjoy life more completely.
There’s nothing quite as disheartening to me as someone uttering “someday I’m gonna ___”. Like love for Little Orphan Annie, it’s always a day away. The only way to accomplish anything in life is to simply begin. As a wise Jedi once said, “Do or do not, there is no try.”
Which leads me to what I love about Startup Weekend. Where dreams are hatched and prototypes honed. Where folks from all areas of expertise, not only tech, come together over ideas and take those first steps towards becoming companies. Where thoughts live out loud.
I love it because there are no boundaries or protocol. There is no magic formula. There are only those sparkling minds and explosive desires, these problems and problem solvers. This place where inklings are etched onto whiteboards, spun into code and leveled at the world. This garage, this lab, this room filled with people who are willing to “Start Something.”
Filming at Startup Weekend San Francisco hosted by Women 2.0, San Francisco State University’s Digital Video Intensive class put together a documentary featuring some of these dreamers and future history makers. We were inspired and amazed by the energy and passion we witnessed. We were left wide eyed in the middle of the Valley, surrounded by the Googles and Apples, and we couldn’t help but wonder: who’s next?
It just takes one idea…