Silicon Valley: A Biography of a Million Souls

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Hi everyone, this is a project work I'm doing at my school. Kinda of a book for my maker project at Communitas Charter High School. This is a draft I've done and I'm looking for suggestions on where to take it.

Submitted: May 03, 2013

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Submitted: May 03, 2013



Silicon Valley

A Biography of a million souls.

By CChs student


I grew up in San Jose, the cogwheel that drives the silicon machine forward. Like a system, we migrate to our places of work and schools. But like rebels we move in random directions as well. We are both robots and individuals in this beautiful place we call home. This tells the stories and expereinces of how we became what we are.

Why we’re all here:

(summary: Talk about how silicon valley arose from garages and turned into multibillion dollars companies attracting many people. then add in how immigration attracted even more people to the area.)

Silicon valley, before it was even called that was known as the valley of heart’s delight. Farms and small towns spread across one of the country’s most fertile lands.  KluT79lds3tjyVkeKc2JIbK_wfQJnS6Cr9XTG4lR

However, the industrialization period began with the founding of stanford university. The University’s research into electronics attracted professors from all over the world. Stanford graduates would become responsible for leading many forays into radios including continuous-wave transmission and amplification and they did so right here in santa clara valley. The Federal Telegraph office operated in Palo alto and helped coordinate the building of ocean-spanning telegraph networks. By 1930’s, the military had recognized the natural barriers to the area and the narrow and the ease of defending the area and built Moffett Field. The country’s entry into world war II had escalated the influx of soldiers into the area. Newspapers predicted that at leAST “60% OF THE POPULATION INFLUX WOULD REMAIN AFTER HOSTILITIES CEASE,” WHICH DID PROVE TO BE TRUE. the return of veterans bought the national trends of the time to the booming towns. Baby boom, suburbanization, and freeways all defined the building of the area in the 1950s.

By the end of the 1950s, san jose’s population had doubled and would do so in the next decade. With high tech companies rapidly growing, housing prices increased by almost 1000% between the 1970s and 2001.

High Tech Fields not only attracted local Americans but scientists and engineers from around the world saw the area as a place to best use their talents. Non-scientific immigrants, mostly those from latin america and southeast asia found job opportunities in service industries that supported high tech workers. Many raised their children in the hopes of them going into the STEM (science, technology, Engineering, and MEdicine) Fields.

PART II: we the PEople

The People of San Jose come from all over the world and a native culture that older cities such as san francisco and New York has yet to develop. Nonetheless, subcultures have developed in every region of san jose. From the affluent West Valley towns of Saratoga, Cupertino, and Los Gatos to the grit of the East Side, People from the different sides of town see the world entirely differently, behave differently, and talk differently. And Yet they have many parallels in their lives.

Part III: Culture

They say culture is “The product of all human work and thoughts in a community.” Certainly, silicon valley proves it self in being heavily technology-related. Where else would you see so many people addicting to starting at their phones or laptops?

But in other ways, our culture has a lot of negative traits. For example, it’s uncommon for strangers to really say hello to each other which is a sharp contrast to most other parts of the country. For example, when I headed up to new jersey (thinking exactly it was as shown by snooki on ‘Jersey shore’) Funny thing, it was nothing like the show at all. PEople were actually friendly.

Hypercompetition: Silicon Valley ranks world-class in its competition for jobs. With extremely high wages and high cost of living, the desire to live bourgeois lifestyles is intense. And it’s not just parents who live this way, but their children too. Acclaimed schools such as Monta Vista and Lynbrook have garnered criticism for being “pressure-cookers” with pundits even injecting race into the conversation (The New White Flight-Wall Street Journal)

Competition is a double-edged sword, it brings out the best and worse in us. It’s not a unique phenomenon with other cities such as New York and Los Angeles seeing the same demands on their populations who work in the finance and entertainment industries respectively

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