If properly managed and matched to local economic need, resources and capabilities, local accelerators can be a significant local economic asset. However, the problem with so many of these “everywhere else” accelerators, is highly unrealistic expectations to be “the next Silicon Valley”, failure to connect with local economic needs, excessive focus on any and every new Web app, and most importantly, poor management. It is also apparent to me that many of these more remote smaller communities are so distant from the mainstream economy, that many of the “great ideas” that come out of them, are embarrassingly late.
This Gizmodo post of aerial drone footage of surfers at Lighthouse Point in Santa Cruz, caught my eye. For those unfamiliar with Santa Cruz, it is a beautiful view, likely to entice you to visit Santa Cruz. For those, like me, very familiar with Santa Cruz and the entire coastline up to Maverick’s, it will make you smile. Aerial photography credit to Eric Cheung.
The knee jerk joke of “There’s an app for that!” isn’t really that funny. Many experienced Silicon Valley veterans have complained loudly about the current malaise of misplaced infatuation with mobile apps, as the apparent end all and be all of Silicon Valley. Vinod Khosla, Marc Andreeson, Max Marmer and a laundry list of others have asked rhetorically how Silicon Valley could have lost its way so badly? Silicon Valley was founded on Big Ideas.