Posts Tagged ‘Steve Hamm’

Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom: New Blogs by My Former BusinessWeek Peeps

December 31, 2009

One of the upsides of the epic decline of print media is seeing the new paths taken by many seasoned journalists. I am watching this transformation take place right here at BusinessWeek, where some of my former colleagues have recently launched new blogs or turned pre-existing ones into their main outlet.

Here’s a sampling:

* Mandel on Innovation and Growth: BusinessWeek’s former chief economist Mike Mandel recently launched a new blog dedicated to covering innovation, growth, economic statistics and commentary on economic and financial reporting.

* Globespotting: Former BusinessWeek senior writer Steve Hamm has moved his globespotting blog over to a new address on Hamm has also joined IBM as a communications strategist.

*Business Books Guy: BusinessWeek’s former book editor Hardy Green has launched a new blog about the book industry, with a focus on the subject Green knows very well, business books.

*The Numerati: BusinessWeek’s former senior writer Steve Baker has continued to publish the blog he launched for his book. It’s a tech-oriented site focusing on the data explosion and its repercussions for business, politics, culture, etc.

Update: I just found out about one new blog by Joseph Weber, BW’s former chief of correspondents. Weber is now an associate professor of journalism at the University of Nebraska and has started a new blog called Wide-Eyed Wonder.

Shout-Out to Departing BusinessWeek Colleagues

December 5, 2009

The most difficult part of Bloomberg’s acquisition of BusinessWeek has been seeing so many hugely talented colleagues and friends leave the operation. Five close coworkers of mine, most of whom I’ve been working with over the last nine years in the technology cluster, are no longer working for the tech team. Left coaster Rob Hof, Chicago correspondent Roger Crockett, and my three NY homies Steve Baker, Steve Hamm and Heather Green. Damn, that is a gaping hole you all have left!

Steve Baker Way BAck When
[Steve Baker On the Streets of El Paso]

It has been a pleasure and honor to work with all of you. Thanks for everything you’ve taught me over the years, and thanks for your camaraderie. I know we’re all going to keep in touch but the office will feel pretty empty without you all–especially the Mother Ship in NY. Best of luck in all of your new ventures and I’ll see ya on the 43rd floor, Playwright, University Cafe, etc. I have no doubt you will all go on to do different and interesting things, and I am eager to see each of you ramble down those new paths.

Virtual Rob Hof
[Real Rob Hof Posing with Virtual Rob Hof]

Has Silicon Valley Lost its Mojo?

January 5, 2009

My colleague Steve Hamm just wrote a provocative cover story in this week’s issue of BusinessWeek called: “What’s Wrong with Silicon Valley?

I don’t agree with Steve that Silicon Valley has lost its mojo. If you look at the history of the Valley (which I did extensively in my book), it has always generated game-changing innovations. Every ten years or so, for the last 40 years, the Valley has cranked out a world-changing innovation (Video games and biotech in the 70s, the PC revolution in the early 1980s, and the Internet in the mid to late 90s). And quite often, those innovations are impossible or very hard to see until they are unleashed on the world.

Think Netscape. Hardly anyone knew what the Internet was until the Web brower was created. And then boom! The Internet revolution was launched during the summer of 1994.

Given the large amount of capital and smart people continuing to work on technology issues, and America’s world-class universities, I think this historical trend will continue. Even in a flat world, the Valley continues to hold a regional advantage.

Looking ahead, investments in green technology hold the most promise to change our world for the better and create enormous wealth. But there are a lot of other powerful technologies being developed.

Despite our differences, I do think Steve did a great job at pointing out several very important areas of concern–problems that could fester into more serious issues if they don’t receive the proper attention. And I couldn’t agree more with his call for entrepreneurs and financiers to think more boldly.

Among the areas of concern are, says Steve:

“Federal funding of advanced computer science and electrical engineering research has dropped off sharply since the late 1990s, as has the number of Americans pursuing computer science degrees. And large technology companies are putting less emphasis on basic research in favor of development work with quicker payoffs. “We’re off-balance. Everybody is thinking short-term,” warns Judy Estrin, former chief technology officer at networking giant Cisco Systems (CSCO). She just came out with a book, Closing the Innovation Gap, that’s a call to arms for the U.S. technology sector.”

What do you think? Has the Valley lost its mojo?