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tv   Michael Malone The Big Score  CSPAN  November 23, 2021 10:34pm-11:52pm EST

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father of all, the case for trump at his latest, the dying citizens. the ideals associated with it disappearing. running the conversation with your phone calls, facebook comments, text and tweet. sunday december 5 at noon eastern on book tv. get your copies of the book. >> ever wonder what it would be like to go back in time to relive history and benefit shape the future? we have an unusual opportunity. 1985, one of the first reports of the tech industry, began a decades long story of people and companies from thisng book recounts history of the tech sector from the beginning.
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it's influential, prove to be entrepreneursw, first president of ebay and entrepreneur assess source capturing the absence of culture outside personalities who creates this. a depiction of a calling card and countless other entrepreneurs. a big score from billing dollars silicon valley published. mike malone and for today's conversation. a unique perspective here capturing contemporary history, first-hand experience. newly created tech history archives for the narrative but i was there. i know hows the air smelled when
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the valley was covid in looming trees inaccurate remember what it was like shake his enormous hand. my elementary school playground. tech companies influence continues to grow debated about positive and negative effects, a critical juncture for sikora valley it would benefit from a long view. weekly podcasts. he brings exactly that perspective to today's conversation. questions such as the forgotten stories from the early years of silicon valley that would be valuable to learn from today but connections between the history with the pressing issues today and future trajectories. what about the darkerr side of the evolved and what most concerns are today? connected to the valleys highest
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valued private companies economic and technological advancement. traditional he has five numbers. offer, television producer and executive professor at the university. here are his numbers. 1963, the year he arrived in silicon valley, 29, the age when he finished writing the big support, a number of pages in twenty-five, hours to write the big score. twenty-five and more books written. moderate today's conversation, we are thrilled to bring him to the stage, reporter where he reports on business and technology.
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scott is mike's podcast partner for the silicon valley insider, a weekly overview of silicon valley in the tech industry. he holds a degree in political science from ucla. welcome mike and scott, we are looking forward to your conversation. take away. >> thank you so much. welcome to everyone. michael, welcome to you. it's great to talk to you and this time i get to ask you a question. please allow us to be informal, we are fully i capable of anythg else. [laughter] >> this is an honor to be here for many reasons. i am a big fan of yours and as a tech reporter, i've been standing on your shoulders for years but also computer history museum, some of the earliest stories i did as a silicon valley reporter were at hm and you have allowed me to host programming there to do many interviews and geek out both
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individually and children to be the exhibits and i always appreciated that. it's an honor to be associated with that. >> if i can add, i am deeply honored, i've done many things over the years, i go back so far, i remember when gordon and bell were making the decision to move to silicon valley and even further back on theo land where the museum is now as a 10-year-old, i used to use might be begun too hunt ground squirrels. [laughter] and i'm really thrilled what he is doing withor the museum right now and into the future, it is tremendous and neither gretna. >> everything you said but the past, present and future, that's what we are going to get into. i love technology obviously, i love silicon valley, i love history and i'm not ashamed to say i love the 80s.
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we are going to get into these today. it's fitting first of all, we are doing on the days where people say what were you doing when? in 1969, business whenn we landd on the moon and for many of us, it was literally a lifetime ago, going back to 1985 in silicon valley's terms, would you agree it's going back three or four lifetimes given how fast the pace of technology changes? you want to go into your predictions and everything but when i went back and. reporter: some of this, how some similar a lot of stuff is. >> you follow mark, we've been through about ten lifetimes since i wrote the book. no, i find myself, my life driving down el camino were heading up computer history
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museum in of flashing between multiple period of time the computer it's easy him, facebook and google were farm fields, i can remember that. i rememberem when nasa was addig more buildings and i saw the shoreline building the amphitheater. everything seems to be here simultaneously, past and present. the valley is kind of the same way, it hasn't changed in fundamental ways for the house changed completely that it's a very different place producing very different products and services and get some of the characteristics of the valley still survives. it's still the same entrepreneurial community. instead of meeting at denny's, they are meeting at pete's to create new companies but theyon
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are still plotting the creation of new companies. >> it struck me the rock stars of the time of the book where the chief executives and the big industry at the time was the chip industry and it lasted for quite some time and then there was a. of time when chips were on the back burner, they were everywhere but the executives want getting all the press so let's fast-forward all the way to the past literally a couple of months all of a sudden there's a huge chip shortage, we are talking not only iphones but automobiles. everything is dependent on chips, it's front page news now, driverless cars, everybody needs chips. all of a sudden i'm thinking you must be having déjà vu because the chip industry is front and center. >> you can'ér get at 150 right now, the most popular vehicle in the united states because they can't get the chips
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microprocessors for the computer. that tells you something profound and something we forgol because we are on the food chain of silicon valley, seven levels down doing apps and that sort of thing, driverless cars at the top of the parent are chips. semiconductor, even though we don't make silicon anymore, chips matter because everything flows from them and we get excited about the latest new technology products and companies but in the end, it depends on getting thehe chips built in right now they haven't been getting felt. >> right. and it makes sense for different reasons, stock at all times highs, facebook stock near all times highs but material from chips are kind of sexy again, did you imagine that 35 years
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ago could you imagine what we are talking about today hot again 35 years from now given how quickly everything in the valley changes? >> no because chips were embedded in once they were really embedded and you put software on top of it and operating systems with apps and everything, the chips are so hidden from the last time we talked about chips, intel inside, the great marketing campaign, now we are realizing everything depends upon the battle is lost. with the semi conductors, we are in those streets right now and it's a dangerous time because 80% of the world chips were being made in taiwan and china is making. [background noises] toward taiwan. they have found the child place of the economy and it's right there. there is a scramble right now by intel and even the taiwanese to
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get to the states and start creating them but it's going to take two or three years and billions of dollars to get us to where we are secure again and making our own semiconductor devices such a worrisome time right now. >> i want you to ask since you brought it up geopolitical situationte or technology like politics on capitol hill technology are entwined. this antitrust hearing something, it's altogether and incest were squirreled between global politics in silicon valley tech. what was it like in 1985, courtney a little more, i want to say in the shadows but doing our own thing back then? >> unnoticed would probably be the right word to describe it. this was a world of concrete buildings in the middle of orchards. very few freeways, el camino was the main artery and during that
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time, the valley operated pretty much independently from the rest of theat united states. there were no famous people in 1985. jobs with the building and he hadn't got his great profile yet in there magazine. the valley wasn't noticed. they were doing extraordinary thingser but we were still relatively anonymous operating independently over the influence of washington d.c. pretty much sitting in our own, it was even greater to go back another decade when don hepler named named the town silicon valley. he introduced area to readers of electronic news, everybody knew hp had been here since the 30s but for the most part it wasn't an enclave of high technology,
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it was just starting. keep in mind the book was published -- i finished the book a week before apple introduced the macintosh so apple ii was pretty well known for apple three was a disaster. they were supposed to change the world, it was not a big deal it turned out so the world would change a week after i finished the book which i think is the fate of most historians, especially hit contemporary historians, he finish something, wrap it up and it's all obsolete the next week. >> even with apple revolutionizing the computer game, they still struggled with a small market share for decades, if you have a machine does.t everybody what was the turn? i remember the late 90s, stock
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markets brought everybody to silicon valley but was there a turn beforee then were removed the tech industry from the shadows into the light? was a just. >> or a gradual move? >> i don't think it was. >> because. >> didn't get a real strong, they made movies. it was it big deal but not that big of aer deal. there were questions, a mouse and tiny screen ducted and have enough memory and what are you going to use it for? it didn't get fixed until adobe came along. i think the two terms were were apple going public, apple ipo everyone talked about that. it made a bunch of people who otherwise would never have been thought successful really wealthy. apple at the time, you gave out
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founders stock like it was jellybeans and no restrictions on back but back then a lot of people were made millionaires overnight like secretaries and the guy with the op who water the office points it was like oh my goodness, technology is hot and will bend worth a lot of moy and we can get in on it. i had people in the newsroom coming up to me in the halls saying can you get me some founders stock in apple? i said i believe that is against the law. the second event occurred right about the time i was writing the book and that was the japanese. the japanese came rolling in chips that were better than ours and ours at the event with the guy from hp showed quality charts of silicon valley chips
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versus japanese chips and it was an eye-opener, it was astounding. the japanese, it was so much better, cheaper and more reliable and everything. the valley was not going to give in. he went back to d.c. started during congressional testimony at all about. bc. the battle with japan at all about that lasted a few years, he put silicon valley really on the map as a crucial part of the american economy and our competitiveness but also started when i think has been not a pleasant history of the valley dealing with washington d.c., dealing with the feds. it's inevitable not because they are so big, the biggest company in the history of the world but back then, they dreaded having to do it. if you remember david packard, come back a few years before
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that from being deputy secretary of defense and he said never again never go to washington again, we're not even going to do defense contracts. they can buy off the shelf, he was so bitter by the experience. that was the attitude of the valley. after that, now we have people running for office and making critical contributions to candidates. the valley is interlocked with d.c. and no getting away from it and it's going to get deeper and deeper. >> we will get into that, too. he mentioned the money and for spotlight because of the apple ipo that brings up two things. i remember shortly after that, steve jobs obtained rockstar status. at the heart of that was almost this super casual hippie almost poverty-stricken magazine covers barefoot he would pose.
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passport a bit to i would say perhaps the second most influential ipo in silicon valley and after they went public, anotherub spotlight on e cover of "time" magazine he was barefoot again. we were ushered in not only thee rockstar ceo but sort of the casual rockstar ceo, by the time he published the book, did anyone dress the way you are addressing right now? honestly in terms of executive's? we became not only the place where money was in office technology but also where you dress casually. >> i made one of the chapters in the book t-shirt tycoons because there was a new phenomena and there was always a great disconnect between the look and the reality because these were hardcharging people. i sat in with jobs during the
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infamous 1984 annual report and he related go wash his feet in the toilet him. it was basically a statement that i am not one of them, i am not of that generation, we are the newhe crowd and we look dres and behave the way we want. it was as much a message as his style. obviously it's been copied ever since up until the 90s when all of a sudden everything switched to jeans and black t-shirts. >> are to read one comment and
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we will take questions from you guys in a little bit but this is timely, don't knock the 12018, we use. >> projects on my. >> i know who thated is. >> i love that reference. this was important, it just hasn't hit mainstream white yet. >> it's an interesting story because my next book i went inside for a couple of months following on their ipo and i learned so much about human nature and how people's lives changed and everything else. ipos are the emblematic event of silicon valley. for a long time, every business plan set at the end we will sell to google but in the last few years, with ipo taking off again, it's become ipo valley
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once more. it's democratized and people get to participate in the process of creation making wealth and that is much as entrepreneurship is the heart of the valley. >> it almost seemed like for ahe while now only were startups keeping money to be t multibillion-dollar unicorns as they call them but rather get caught up if you are a chip company looking to buy you if you are a a social media company or instagram thinking facebook is going to come in and give us $1 billion, youtube and google but you're right, we started to see more ipos, as a journalist, i like to see that because they are independent. i remember when microsoft did that many years ago, barbie sat if yahoo goes away because they would be bought by another giant
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company but it went away for different reasons. >> the big police were making themselves immortal. facebook and starting tomm lose some of your billion users so what you do? you by the next hot company and you keep going that way buying up the users and now you have what cap and etc. i don't think it's helping for the valley. companies need to die. most of the companies in the biggest score argon, a few residual survivors but it was a good thing because we constantly need to refresh you challenging companies and ideas and etc. if we are going to have a handful of gigantic companies with everything that poses a potential threat, this isn't thp valley anymore. >> because of sociall media, these days young techies especially founders complained to me that because of social
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media everybody knows everything about us and everyone is looking for the dark side of success. jeff basis may be a multibillionaire is going in the look at the workers, there is always that two sides which is what we do for our jobs. back in the 80s, there is this perception people didn't know about but in your book you talk about how there was a dark side, it wasn't social media at the time but new there was something going on, right? >> i looked over the book again, i was struck, i thought i was reading this cheerleading book for the valley, all of these wonderful humans changing the watermill about and i find oya, i did work with thousand and toxic chemicals killing people in the valley and pete carey, we looked into espionage and drugs
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and everything, criminals running around thena valley even back in the 70s when the chips shortage happened in the early 80s, we had the black guerrilla family working in the valley trying to get chips off the loading docks, even bad ones so they could sell them on the gray market and now we know there have been spies here almost from the beginning and not just our enemies but allies were here as well and that was a shocker. to. reporter: that, there's a whole second valley hidden under the first one and in many ways, i think that criminality is reduced the last 30 or 40 years. i think it's in the ascendant right now and why be a criminal when you can make a billion dollars pretty easily around
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here? >> is it different because so much of the technology decades ago was built on the government structure? chip industry, defense industry and now we've got a hundred different apps to help you get your food delivered, it's a different world so you're right, it seems like facebook has a share but it seems to be let's do something to cash in. >> the fundamental shift between hardware and software and between electrical engineers and code writers. that is the old world, as i think back about fairchild and the companies in the early days, intel and national and all that, now is a madman era.
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andy has a crewcut in the old photographs and youot realize nw is a distinct world and that kind of world did have traditional criminal behavior companies dreamed of becoming big and they have very specific structures and charts and everything. ... arket changes too. originally the valley was selling to industry. it was a commercial valley. we were selling to other companies. now, the turning point was the web but then social networks. the valley it sells to consumers now. it is a different worldview. i know old valley families, by your home, get your gold watch. today young people, san
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francisco sold on specs in the hardware era and in many ways manipulation in the software social networking era and how to enlist into joining our world and becoming a member of the cult from because he knows he and everything else. they've even convinced us to design our own products. what is facebook but a set of tools that is a very different reality and it's begun to show in the personality. >> were there any use jumping on the bandwagon where clearly they were not attack but they wanted the valuation in other words trying to jump on and say we are
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a tech company? they really weren't but they were trying to affiliate themselves with the cool valley thing so you've got ads from the 60s and 70s it's all people dressed like me with a pretty girl at a computer that she's never seen before in her life and it's very sexist and everything else. then you start to see the change, you start seeing nerds appear in advertisingee and the whole point was we are a tech company and we are smart and hard driving and we are going to be successful because we have this guy and that was kind of the turning point of inflection.
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i want to bring up a quick comment. thanks for writing.y are there any publications, and this comes up on silicon valley lost its luster and not only that but other cities are emerging as rivals and as others in tel aviv et cetera all around the world. silicon valley has had a pretty heavy run and i've always thought the most flattering thing isn't competition taking away from what we've had. >> i declare to the valued at about four times over the years, and i was wrong every single time. i think that the traditional valley has lost its luster but think about the history goes
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back 121 years. it goes back to palo alto. it wasn't the valley but it was on the cutting edge of technology. by the time you get to the garage it is only 30-years-old and that was 90 years ago and at the valley is still going strong because it keeps regenerating itself and i declared the valley dead because of traffic, the cost of housing and i looked back and there wasn't that much traffic. you could buy for $90,000, so what was i complaining about with all of these peripheral challenges as long as the entrepreneurial company building and creativity stayed strong.
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that's why i worry about these companies having too much control because we begin to age and lose that vitality of people wanting to reach for the brass ring. they don't have the culture. this is the only place i've ever been where technology is just penetrated with the culture. you go to a local coffee place when people were developing apps for the iphone there were six or seven tables.
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with a spreadsheet they were starting ath company. i don't go anywhere where i see thatom and finally look at the venture capital in the world. there are officers everywhere but it's working as long as the money is here, silicon valley will keepp regenerating itself. >> we certainly haven't gotten rid of traffic and my concern is as they get higher and higher it's one thing to say you are already here, you've got your house. with creative value as an early
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graduate i don't have an argument for that and i'mff worried that entrepreneurs are going to go somewhere else. it's begun to happen but it's been t very slow and the valley has to grow outwards. now i'm hearing developers starting to develop morgan hill and it's just a little over the hill we can grow in all those directions physically and we are growing tall. i drive down in sunnyvale and i don't know where i am.
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will that defeat the valley, i don't know. we've learned people can be productive during the call, and i think that would enable the valley to become more virtualized. they flirted with the idea of technology and software and therefore we can work from a peach coffee shop until the last 12 to 14 months. for the backlash it's like wait
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a minute, wait a minute i think we went too far california talked about that high-speed rail and from north to south i thought the best thing to do right now is to build high-speed rail from san francisco or san jose to send sacramento bee and open up the corridor to the valley for it to grow. i don'tt think -- i don't think we need to drive to the office everyday anymore. if they want their employees to come back two days a week we will negotiate, three days, just don't quit. i think that is the future. >> let's go back a bit. you talk about what you did and did not get right in 1985 and
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yeah you called the valley dead many times. let's talk about some of the things that speak out to you. >> the one i feel most guilty about he gave basically everything we are looking at right now, the bit mapping and everything else. he'd been pretty much forgotten. he has a kid i had seen a clip of that stuff and i'd forgotten about it. the valley had a pretty much forgotten and he came into the mercury news one day and sat down and talked to me and tried to tell me what he was doing and what he had done and all that
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and i just thought he was another old valley guy living in the past. when i wrote this book i didn't give him enough credit. i bought the pr lines being put out by apple and the other computer companies that were the creators of this stuff. unfortunately, he got alzheimer's disease fairly young. i saw him a couple of times but i was never really able to apologize to him for not giving him the credit. luckily history has begun to give him some credit. i don't think enough, but it's begun. the second thing i screwed up on, and there is no forgiving me on this, the internet. i was with a group of kids, they were bright kids we went to xerox park and i sat down in
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front of a terminal and i got to play with arpanet in 1967, 68, somewhere in there and it did absolutely nothing for me. you had to type in all these code numbers just to talk to someone at caltech that didn't know anything. i had nothing to say to him. i thought this is stupid. this is never going to go anywhere. when the web started taking off, the internet started taking off and everything else, i tried that and thought that's interesting but nothing i'm going to devote my time to, and it wasn't until really the web came along and what everybody else found out you will not see the word interest in a book written in 1985 on the cusp of
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changing everything so i regret that one. >> they had a slightly different experience when they visited. >> you know at least as much as idea because you are still out there on the field on the lines you cover a daily story and over the weekend did you do the round up and discover the real story behind the daily story and six months later find out the real story behind the real story and then ten years later at a cocktail party, someone tells you what happened. steve jobs at xerox park is a perfect example of that. the famous self-effacing mythological story goes and sees
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the computer and he says we've got to do that. it's a great story and it shows the humility and all that but the fact of the matter is they had already gone and because there were certain guys in the park that were not working at apple and they knew all about this thing and they said we've got to do it. they said steve has to sign off on it he will never sign off on it because he hasn't been discovered and so then they started let's make him discover it, so they set everything up so he would walk by that computer and that's the real story. there is a number of things that i've learned in this book that are completely wrong for example, intel i didn't realize
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that one day he said i'm going to quit and andy said i will destroy you they will never hear your name in n silicon valley again. okay, so that is why all these years we heard that the microprocessor was ted hoff's invention. the architecture or the idea was absolutely but when he left i noticed all of a sudden that the story changed again. he is the guy that built the whole thing so there are these four guys that actually i nominated two of them for a prize. there are certain people in d te town to get a nobel prize that didn't deserve it but that is a different story so in history
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the departments tend to get credit where it doesn't do and d ignore people that deserve the attention. >> you are hard on yourself for what it would turn out to be about many years later, microsoft was still dissing the internet. it didn't kill them. >> if they killed netscape in order to survive. >> now they are the second most valuable in the world. there was another that is much later on the precipice of going away to the point that michael bell said let's just to sell the assets back to the shareholder and that company is now by the way the most valuable in the world, apple, which somehow survived thanks largely to the internet and the fact that you can walk around --nd >> and i discovered when i was writing my apple book that story doesn't fit with any of our preconceptions i think that
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steve jobs convinced nolan to let him design a computer game and nobody believed he could do and they didn't like him anyway because he was just backth and e smiled and was obnoxious so he convinced his friends steve walked into the office and said look whate i created and he said fabulous and he paid him. steve didn't give half of it and because of that he didn't have enough money when he went to the computer show he wanted to buy a processor and he couldn't afford the 86 that he wanted because it
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was like $400 and he had 50 so he took one out of a goldfish bowl and he built the apple one around that. as a result, apple add microprocessors for the first 25 years and that was the original sin.
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it felt for the next 20 years, 8% before steve 2 came back. >> what company right now is perhaps going to cast the largest shadow and is there any company right now that, you know, we are kind of missing that maybe 20 years from now will say [inaudible]. >> it had a lot of batteries it doesn't really get noticed because it isn't as simple as the conductors. there are some battery companies out there that are doing interesting things.
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it went toee public in the vall, silicon batteries but is the product going to work, i don't know but it's possible that batteries can get on the freight train and i think batteries are going to be crucial and whoever wins that a breakthrough i had lunch a little while back and said what is the greatest invention, is it you and your
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team and the one true moment of genius in the history you can see it coming that he would extrapolate from where we are now to what we could do in the future but he says the idea of taking the transistor and laying it flat in the printing process and being able to scale it down he said that came out of the blue. that was not in active engineering he said that was an act of artistic creation and he said everything else pales next to that moment, so i thought that was interesting. and i think that is where we are waiting for the moment when you get that process and everything changes and presents the
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opportunity to do that every two or three years. everything is cheaper now. he played computer games at the university and you realize you couldn't to build an electronic pinball machine because they were toooo expensive and all th. they got below ten bucks and he knew he could build space invaders and start that constant improvement dot presents a landscape of the opportunity every two or three years and that is what makes the entrepreneurs keep going, the opportunity right there and i think that invention is just around the t corner. we can't predict it or depend upon it but it always shows up and that is the greatness of the valley. i'm waiting to hear the next one. i think it's going to be battery power, it could be artificial intelligence. i don't think robotics, but i do
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think that we still have to figure out autonomous vehicles in a better way for transportation. something big is waiting in the wings and i can just feel it you can feel it rising underground but you can't see it yet. >> let me ask about what might be waiting in the weighing on the darker side you use the phrase rising from the ground. many years ago we figured out what is rising from the ground by the plant and it was killing people ultimately, poisoning their water. we didn't know it then, nobody really knew it then but it sort of caught people by surprise. >> let me tell you about that. i was on a story the big factory was being built and we were out side having a drink afterwards, me and a bunch of reporters i
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heard people g getting hurt by toxics. i said do you know about toxic chemicals and they said it's all over the place. i said have you ever written about it and they said we've read about it in the trade press and technology. i went back to merck and told that to susan we pitched it and that was the beginning of the whole thing in the valley. everybody had quietly known about it but it was so pretty with the green grass burns and the nice concrete tilt up buildings. this wasn't a smokestacks or pittsburgh. here was a clean, safe industry. only then did we discover that we were working with some of this dangerous chemicals that were known so you are right.
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i think we sensed that something was wrong. >> there were environmental concerns whether it was bitcoin or whatever it is. even in the place where we are clean, software, not producing anything and therefore we are not hurting the environment, we can see what's coming because of january 6th. we can see what is coming whether it is political or other countries right now that are relying on social media to spread their word and we are seeing what is here with entire facebook sections about why you shouldn't get vaccinated and people died because of it. how long is technology going to be allowed and somebody can act
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against it and say there's going to be a disincentive for the misinformation much like eventually there was a disincentive. we see several things occur one of them is the notion that we wcan assign people to determine what is truth and then control the access to the truth to billions of people and i always harken back to the latin phrase about who will guard the guardians. none of us are sure that we are right. there's a first amendment is specifically designed to create debates between alternative points of view we may be listing
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solutions to whatever problems we face, and i'm bothered that we are allowing large companies to decide what we should know i'm a first amendment absolutist and all points of view have to be recognized and it seems tech in the last decade has narrowed of the area that we are able to operate in our thinking and our states and everything else. i'm not sure they are the people that should be doing it. i'm certain the federal government should be doing it and to date, they haven't done anything about it because the politicians don't even understand what they are talking
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about. we start to see a little bit oft a glimmer. it's probably somewhere in the law that we have been getting the special breaks into sparing the responsibility for the bad may carry. that they we were talking the other day about the warning shot on antitrust stuff, and i think tithat is a hit that they are coming for the big boys. you know, we know that the manipulation begins to change the wiring of our kids brains. we have to understand that the digital world is not the same as the natural analog world. the analog world wasn't being billed w for us. we had to learn to cope with it. the digital world was specificallyly designed for us o
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entertain us and manipulate us and to take our money, to empower us and we are still working it out. the next few years strike me as rather frightening. >> are we ever going to get a president or any other leader who does not is that where we are that isn't the sub speech so much? >> i'm not sure that we will. talking about silicon valley's change from the code writers et cetera and one of the things i talked about is freeware, which we all love.
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it's free. it's actually a truly pernicious valley invention because you give away everything freees but you don't really notice that you are giving up every bit of your personal information so you are slowly surrendering your liberty in order to get that. we have to peel that back and have more daylight into the process. it may be that ultimately we own our data if somebody wants the data they have to buy itny froms or they may just say take all of myak personal information as log as i can have that version of war craft but it has to be our decision. right now it isn't really our decision and i think that is where a lot of the resentment of the valley is coming from right now.
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>> there are agents to handle the deals and whatever jobs we have. why not in agent to handle. >> 25 cents an hour for the original. >> they asked me for the numbers and the one that really didn't work was nothing. that was the number attached to how much did doubleday make publishing my looks. they've done a beautiful job of all that and i hope they see something from this because they could have put on a paper and made more money writing my first books. >> well i'm glad you got to talk about it. i want to talk to some questions out there and some have found it in the comment and feel free to put it in the q-and-a section.
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what about the intellectual property issues which are kind of on two other sides. >> that is a complicated question because it is china still a friend or enemy? and you know, from where they are beinghe imprisoned in concentration camps, how do you justify doing that just to make profits? there was an article written i think in 1980, 1979, in the computer decision i will always remember the title would you sell a computer toul hitler ande
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went through the lists of all the companies all of those that were selling mainframes and computers to the likes of the argentinian government and you know, other dangerous companies around the world who are doing terrible things like keeping track of citizens that they were arresting. nobody talked about it and the question was are we in bed with china at a time that it isn't morally right to be there anymore. that whole intellectual property things they made some moves to try to join the world patent organization and all that kind of stuff, but they are still doing it. ioi know i've been involved in companies where they actually put in tripwires into the products they were going to sell
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in case they tried to reverse engineer the code. when you deal with a country that allows that kind of theft, you've got to think twice. >> ibm did sell computers to hitler. the question then is at what point is it wrong to be dealing with china? we are so deep right now we have the institutes and the universities, the top basketball player in the world, he's apologizingta for the scene, thy are reworking movies on and on and on. when does that stop and when do we say that market is not worth
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it. they are threatening taiwan. we are getting into dangerous ground and companies have to make some very serious decisions very soon. >> catherine has a question and wants to know your thoughts on the semi conductor facility that youho talked about on the podcat being built in arizona much like california there are constraints on water, energy, other environmental challenges what about the concerns of the environment when it comes to thingsvi like water? >> i thought why there and then you realize they've been there for decades and so you have a large population of people
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pretty good at putting on the bunny suits it's going to put a lot of pressure on the infrastructure of arizona and new mexico, but there you go. >> end of the environmental concerns are haunting i would say for the likes of elon muskk when he talked to bitcoin and simultaneously the environment he's talking up a currency where a lot of the mining gets done at the expense of the argument. >> you know you are in 2021 when people are concerned about the environmental damage created by a crypto currency the
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relationship between silicon valley and where do you see these antitrust hearings, is it ever going to impact the valley and make a difference in the likes uber and amazon or affect any of the companies whatsoever? >> we've watched this dance now for years. we've got to do something about big attack and then they send their army of lawyers how much
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money a congressman gets he's got to vote a certain way for his constituents. i see that day coming. breaking up companies after a certain point is not a bad thing. ultimately, the pieces of the company are usually more successful than the original company and the classic example of that is ibm was truly a monopoly in the 50s and 60s then all of a sudden they get hit by antitrust and they are paralyzed with the legal hearings for almost a decade and in that time they didn't get into the personal computer world and they messed that revolution in the first round and that enabled 150 companies to get
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started. then ibm gets in the game and they come in and eventually took over a sizable share of the companies that were created while they distracted our giant, so we have the real competition and innovation. if you want to put your vacation photos up, you don't have any choice. if you break them up you will have multiple companies with is the same people. there's a lot more creativity and you have a lot more dynamic because they started showing up in that field. right now they are closed. >> it wasn't that long ago and
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now it seems like everybody wants to show how they are isn't that an unhealthy trend? >> since 1960 look at the companies every ten years they pretty much completely change every decade lately that isn't the case. we have companies now 20 or 30-years-old order dominating everything and maybe it's healthy for the balance of trade, but it isn't healthy for the economy and for silicon valley. >> time for a couple more questions. one just came in. what advice do you have for people who want to take an active role in shaping a future in their personal life or even for humanity and that is interesting because they talk a lot about we are really helping
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humanity and talk a little bit about how that is kind of sketchy but even a better future for themselves. >> that is a tough one. there's all these brilliant people out there. let's put it this way, there's billry hewitt and that's about , and the legendary drunken, crazy bob wilder but there are many brilliant people around here. if the iq of silicon valley is insanely high. people want to try something new and create a new company. they are out there and they are looking for help.
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get to know people out there. one of the rules of silicon valley is if you can't answer somebody's question, you refer them to somebody and that's been the dynamo is that you will get connected to everybody in the town to form startup teams. develop products of your own it was at its peak in 1958.
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the internet is the ultimate platform and start a blog and make it a case for what you believe in and get involved in crowdsourcing things. there's a million opportunities to do good in this town. we tend to focus on doing well we've been leaders for 20 plus years. that's important to me.
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to make this a better place. >> we have a final question all queued up but one quick one because you wrote something very specific that is going to take you back. i think i filled your position. what did you do there? >> i handled calculators and one you asked what was my favorite artifact in the museum, i think this was the document on silicon valley but there were several calculators. the calculator group, desktop
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computer group so i would say the hp 3,000 that kept screwing up and i'm proud to be wearing a fitbit. i introduced the digital watch which is going for $10,000 now. it weighed about a pound but it was the first true computer watch. from the computer history museum, a great trip back about what the museum wants you to do it committed to inspiring the next generation. there is an issue that focuses on one word of advice starting their careers so as you reflect on your life and experience year
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of silicon valley we want you to know your one word of advice as well as the story behind why you chose that one word. >> i've watched a lot of people at the museum hold up their words and they are always uplifting and positive and i always feel good looking at thea but i thought no, i'm going to tell the truth relentless. it was built by and run by and will continue to thrive in the pursuit ofn technology and companies success. you can't change the world if you are not relentless. when i had a tv show on pbs i interviewed a bunch of executives and said what was your single biggest screwup and it was interesting, the most successful were the ones most willing to admit where they had failed, and they used it ever
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since. it was like a shiny object they kept in their pocket. it will work eventually if you work hard enough, long enough and stay relentless and never give up. >> as always, great to talk to you. i look forward to the podcast again this friday. thank you for letting us chat. this has been great. i will turn this back over. .thank you, scott and mike.
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you said a few things earlier in the conversation that stuck with you talked about things emerging in the 1980s which made me think about here we are sort of once-in-a-lifetime it made me think about talking heads. here's we are on a camera using this technology from the long ago and we are presenting the context and history and ability to think deeply about the stories of the past and how they can be a guide the future. it's a wonderful opportunity to ppreflect and i encourage those that haven't to take a look at the book. there's some incredible stories. it'ss about the peopling of the implications, so i will encourage those that have been supporting the museum to take
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your hats off and thank yourself in support of us coming out of the pandemic we have done well relative to anyone else. if you like w programs like thi, it's super important. we will be moving on to present opportunities but thanks for the wonderful program today and to the audience members for giving your time and support. thanks again.
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now i am very excited to introduce tonight's speaker science journalist has used nearly every medium to produce award-winning journalism for pbs including documentaries, podcasts, short video series, interactive games and more. the articles on memory and di


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