Online start-ups are once again the rock stars of the tech industry, a trend arguably brought to the spotlight by director David Fincher in his film, The Social Network. The 2010 American drama depicts the founders of Facebook as handsome, sharp-as-glass guys who partied, schemed, and programmed their way to a billion dollars, perpetuating an intoxicating narrative of success that reflects an experience shared by many musicians, business people, techies, and artists with an underlying message that it’s possible to make something from scratch, to get noticed, and that passion, hard work and dedication matter.
And this is also why everyone needs to watch Silicon Valley. Not just start-up geeks, business people, programmers and entrepreneurs. But everyone.
The show follows a band of programmers as they try to get their start-up off the ground. There’s funding to consider, savage competition to endure, and an obscene logo bought for $10,000 from a guy named Chewie. There’s also the fact that Richard, who invented a million-dollar algorithm, is so maladroit he can’t even explain his product to his angel investor. When asked for his business plan, Richard’s eyes instantly express panic. Not because he can’t explain his plan, but because he doesn’t have one.
For anyone considering to jump on the start-up train, or thinking about opening a small business, or wondering what life is like off the beaten path, Silicon Valley is required viewing. The show depicts, with hilarious accuracy, what happens when a bunch of smart people get together to make something happen. Things go wrong. Sleep is forgone. And no one gives up. No one.
If anything, Silicon Valley is a testament to the power of vision. For the young and hungry, it’s stirring stuff. And with a second season on the way, there’s a lot more juice left in the tank, not to mention it also has the best joke about asparagus ever written.