book title: Troublemakers
deck: Silicon Valley’s coming of age.
merit: By the author of the no. 1 New York Times best seller the Future of the Mind.
author: by Leslie Berlin
— book description —
The tale of 7 exceptional high-tech pioneers.
The richly told narrative of the Silicon Valley generation that launched 5 major high-tech industries in 7 years, laying the foundation for today’s technology driven world.
At a time when the 5 most valuable companies on the planet are high-tech firms and nearly half of US citizens say they cannot live without their mobile phones, Troublemakers reveals the untold story of how we got here. This is the gripping tale of 7 exceptional men and women, pioneers of Silicon Valley in the 1970s and early 1980s. Together, they worked across generations, industries, and companies to bring tech 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.
During these same years, the first ARPANET transmission came into a Stanford lab, the university began licensing faculty innovations to businesses, and the Silicon Valley tech community began mobilizing to develop the lobbying clout and influence that have become critical components of modern American politics. In other words, these were the years when one of the most powerful pillars of our modern innovation and political systems was first erected.
Featured among well-known Silicon Valley innovators like Steve Jobs, Regis McKenna, Larry Ellison, and Don Valentine are Mike Markkula, the underappreciated chairman of Apple who owned one-third of the company; Bob Taylor, who kick-started the Arpanet and masterminded the personal computer; software entrepreneur Sandra Kurtzig, the first woman to take a technology company public; Bob Swanson, the cofounder of Genentech; Al Alcorn, the Atari 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, the Stanford administrator who changed how university innovations reach the public. Together, these troublemakers rewrote the rules and invented the future.
description: by publisher