I have a simple answer to the question of why Silicon Valley is the hub for all things startupy (I swear it’s a real word…). While this answer is probably glaringly obvious to those in the SF Bay area, those who have never been here (such as myself less than 2 months ago) seem a lot less likely to realize it. It’s the density of important people.
In the last few months I have met a ridiculously large number of entrepreneurs: everyone from CEOs of multi-billion-dollar conglomerates to immensely successful businesspeople-turned-investors to tons of everyday (and I use the term very loosely, because most of these people are anything but “everyday”) startup founders. I’ve received 2 or 3 job offers, had so many famous names thrown at me that I can only hope to remember a few of them. It’s been immensely awe-inspiring. How many people with such influence have I met on Long Island or in Pittsburgh? A few at best (no offense Luis). It’s a more advanced case of the Infinite Monkey Theorem. If you put a thousand entrepreneurs in a room with a thousand computers, you will almost surely wind up with a thousand successful startups, while one entrepreneur is less likely to produce one startup in isolation. To put it more succinctly:
The number of brilliant ideas increases exponentially with the number of brilliant people.
Funny how that works, isn’t it?