On a recent holiday (a road trip on the Californian coast) I decided to stop by Silicon Valley and try and soak up some of that start-up feeling.

eBay HQ

One of the reasons for a holiday to California, besides the thrill of driving up Big Sur in a convertible, was to get to San Francisco and to discover what all the fuss was about and why so many start-ups are located there.

Part of me hoped I’d just stumble across Mark Zuckerberg in the street and he’d offer me a job – obviously that didn’t happen but I did manage to find out where most of the big offices where and geekily get some souvenir photos of those famous logos.

facebook HQ

San Francisco

Generally speaking, San Francisco was pretty cool and I had a great time there. The weather was certainly better than Manchester’s but I did feel like some of Manchester‘s areas (e.g. Northern Quarter or Canal Street) do hold their own against their admittedly bigger counterparts in San Francisco’s Mission and Castro areas.

Silicon Valley

It was strange driving around the physical home of the internet and Silicon Valley felt like, in the nicest possible way, a giant industrial estate – with the exception of Facebook’s offices which seemed to be in the middle of a housing estate.

I couldn’t help but feel like these giant offices could have been physically located anywhere in the world and that when the time comes for me to start a business for myself I don’t necessarily have to do it in Palo Alto or Mountain View – I could quite feasibly do it anywhere I wanted.

Having said that, I do still feel the pull of Silicon Valley, and I do feel like it is the place to go and prove your worth in this industry and I would love the opportunity to give it a go there.

Yahoo offices
Google Road - just outside their HQ

Your thoughts

Was it too geeky to take those photos outside what are essentially just company offices? I suspect a fair few of you will think that it was and some of you may have been in web geek heaven like I was, either way I’d love to know.

4 responses to “Pilgrimage”

  1. Thanks for the comments guys.

    I should probably thank two people here: firstly my girlfriend, Stina for taking the pictures and putting up with my quest and Stina’s cousin Dave who we stayed with for a couple of days and who drove us round on this mission to find all these places. The fact that Dave has worked in Silicon Valley for 16 years meant that we found these places much more easily.