Cities are attracting start-ups with hives of new-media activity. But what's life really like in these Silicon Alley wanna-bes?
Friday, June 16, 1995. Carl Weisbrod gazed down the corridor of steel and glass that stretches into the heart of Manhattan's financial district. He was looking for a building--a single building--that by dint of high technology and high-powered marketing could be transformed into a new-media mecca.
Weisbrod is president of the Alliance for Downtown New York Inc., a not-for-profit organization charged with managing the city's lower-downtown business district. His plan was to lure hip new-media and Internet-related start-ups--critical to the growth of New York's entertainment and advertising industries--out of their SoHo lofts and into the stodgy financial district. The bait: affordable bandwidth, and lots of it. Mayor Rudolph Giuliani was on board with a tax-credit plan making downtown real estate more affordable. Now all Weisbrod needed was a building that--wired to the hilt--could offer those start-ups the lightning-fast Internet access that is their most critical raw material.
But negotiations with one developer had failed, and the effort seemed in danger of losing momentum. So that afternoon, Weisbrod called William C. Rudin, a powerful New York developer. "I knew there were few that could move as quickly as the Rudin organization," recalls Weisbrod.
Rudin is the grandson of Samuel Rudin, a real estate tycoon who made his fortune buying and developing buildings in midtown and the financial district. One of those buildings was 55 Broad Street, the former home of Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc. Like so many buildings mothballed after the stock-market crash of 1987, 55 Broad Street had closed its doors in 1991; by 1995 it seemed destined for white-elephant status. Weisbrod no doubt reminded Rudin of that fact when they chatted that Friday afternoon.
Things happen fast in Manhattan. By Monday morning Rudin had agreed to reopen the building and try to make space affordable for small companies. In exchange the city offered tax breaks and the alliance pledged to help market the new techno-edifice. On Wednesday, Weisbrod and Rudin held a press conference in front of City Hall and inaugurated New York's Information Technology Center. By the end of the week, Rudin had begun talks with investment bank J.P. Morgan, which would field a significant portion of the $41 million needed to renovate 55 Broad Street. The cash would go for satellite hookups, high-speed videoconferencing, and fiber optics for high-speed local area network connections and Internet access at T1 speeds and faster.
Meanwhile Weisbrod, Rudin, and other civic leaders were talking up their efforts to the city's magazine and newspaper editors. "Say it enough times, and people begin to believe," one of Rudin's long-time associates likes to say. And she's right. That fall, Metropolis, a national publication about urban planning, ran an article titled "If You Wire It, Will They Come?" Soon after, New York magazine picked up the story, and a flurry of articles appeared in the New York Times. Silicon Alley--or at least the myth of Silicon Alley--had been born.
Since then a great many articles have been written celebrating--and lately debunking--Silicon Alley and other areas seeking recognition as centers for new-media growth. The phenomenon is widespread: civic leaders, local businesses, or other interested parties set out to create vibrant communities of software companies. The goal is to help diversify their economies and fill the gap left by large manufacturers that have moved overseas. Most rely on a strategy similar to New York City's: build a state-of-the-art cyberdistrict smack in the middle of a decaying neighborhood and hope that it becomes the epicenter of a local economic boom.
But what's more important than the phenomenon itself--or the who's hot/ who's not approach so many take to it--is the experience of small companies trying to operate in one of those cyberdistricts. You might think that location is not an issue for businesses that rely little on natural resources and whose employees are accustomed to working remotely. But individual locations offer vastly different advantages and disadvantages that can significantly affect the fortunes of new-media start-ups.
What follow are the stories of three cities--none of them usual suspects--that experts have deemed potential hotbeds of new-media activity. From those stories, small businesses will better understand both who's trying to woo them and what to expect once they've been won.
Pittsburgh: An Ambivalent Suitor
In its 1950s heyday, Pittsburgh had close to 700,000 residents. Today, in the wake of Big Steel's decline, there are about 360,000. So you wouldn't be surprised to see the city's leaders chasing after fresh blood in the form of new-media companies.
But they're not doing enough to catch them, at least in the view of many entrepreneurs. In Pittsburgh the major source of high-tech entrepreneurial activity remains Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), ranked high among graduate schools in engineering and business management by U.S. News & World Report. A good number of high-tech companies have spun out of CMU research projects and into money-making enterprises on the streets of Pittsburgh--one street in particular.
Architect and real estate developer Joel Kranich began developing Craig Street when he arrived in Pittsburgh in the late 1950s. Back then it was a run-down avenue lined with bars, bowling alleys, and dilapidated houses. Steel mills darkened the sky with soot and smog. The pollution obstructed even the University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, a massive Gothic tower only blocks from Kranich's office.
But Kranich considered Craig Street a safe bet because of its proximity to CMU, the University of Pittsburgh, and the Carnegie Museum. "People said I was crazy to buy here," says Kranich. "But it was obvious to me that this was prime real estate." Today Pittsburgh's air is cleaner, and Craig Street is home to upscale clothing retailers, coffee shops, and a growing community of software companies that draws heavily on the university's talented programmers and engineers.
Although CMU has been the dominant force in nurturing Pittsburgh's entrepreneurial technology base, its civic leaders haven't been missing in action entirely. In 1983 a group of area business leaders founded the High Technology Council. Today the council has more than 1,400 members--mostly small to midsize companies--and several programs, products, and services aimed at building local and national awareness of Pittsburgh as a center for technology. "First, we have to get people in the region to recognize that there is a strong technology base here," says Raymond Christman, president of the council, "and then we have to sell it outside of the region."
What Christman is selling is--in large part--the entrepreneurial activity around CMU. It's an area where space is cheap and part-time programmers can make it to class on time. Many of Kranich's former tenants are now members of Pittsburgh's nascent techno-elite.
Robert Frasca is one example. As a naval officer flying S-3B Vikings over the Iraqi desert in 1992, Frasca learned how to cope with the two scariest components of starting an Internet company: high speed and high risk. After the Gulf War, he landed a job as a naval ROTC instructor at CMU, where he started experimenting with the Internet.
Frasca and his partner, Joel Maske, had the idea of tracking mutual funds and stocks in real time for large fund companies. So in 1993, with the help of Donald Jones, founder of Nets Inc., they launched Galt Technologies Inc. "We had a place on Craig Street. Our Conference Room B was actually a coffee shop," recalls Frasca.
By 1995 Galt was making $1.5 million a year and had more than 40 employees. Then Intuit, a large financial-software developer in Silicon Valley, offered to buy the company for $9 million. The offer was quickly accepted, and Frasca was given the chance to become Intuit's director of business development. At first he saw it as the opportunity of a lifetime. But as a new father, making a home in a quiet suburb, "I was pulling my heart out," he says. "I didn't know if I should stay in Pittsburgh or leave."
Pittsburgh eventually decided for him by coming up with a better offer. Frasca passed on Silicon Valley and went to work as vice-president of marketing for WiseWire, an Internet start-up working with intelligent agents. "Intuit would have been great to learn and grow, but WiseWire could make me rich," he says.
The man who once flew over the desert at speeds above 500 mph is now content to whiz around Pittsburgh in his white Porsche Carrera. As Frasca darts around the city's tight corners, people on the street stop and stare. Long accustomed to the quiet wealth of the Carnegies, Mellons, and Fricks, they seem uncomfortable with this brash new breed of millionaire. Frasca, in turn, criticizes the city for not doing enough to recruit high-profile entrepreneurs from other areas. "They are elephant hunting," says Frasca. "They boast that Sony Manufacturing is coming to Pittsburgh, but what good does that do me? I need people I can connect with so that I can expand my company."
Frasca is not alone in those sentiments. Joshua Knauer, 25 -year-old executive director of the EnviroLink Network, a nonprofit on-line environmental information network, describes being wined and dined by cities eager for him to relocate there. So far his hometown isn't making any deals. "I'm firmly rooted in Pittsburgh because it's a great place to live," says Knauer, "but the older generation does not quite understand the needs of the younger entrepreneurs. And you still have people who wouldn't mind seeing this be a one-industry town again."
There's other evidence that the city has not done enough to address the needs of new-media start-ups. In the past five years, Pittsburgh has lost a number of high-profile companies--among them Lycos, Nets Inc., and Galt--to cities like Boston and San Francisco.
Christman disputes the depiction of Pittsburgh as a city after "big game," arguing that its efforts have been disproportionately aimed at small companies. He also says that Pittsburgh hasn't lost nearly as many technology start-ups as some claim. And the council and other organizations are making efforts to keep future start-ups in the city, he says, including a promotional and educational campaign aimed at CMU students who are likely to start companies. In addition the technology-transfer group at CMU, which helps spin out companies from CMU research, has been known to require spin-offs to sign a contract saying that they will always keep a portion of their operations in the region.
Not that everyone needs an arm twisting to stay in Pittsburgh. Mark Juliano started out in Silicon Valley and then moved here to become vice-president of marketing for FORE Systems. After helping FORE become one of the largest asynchronous transfer mode equipment vendors in the nation, Juliano created ISLIP Media Inc., a developer of software for cataloging, indexing, searching, and archiving video content. "My costs are good here, and my access to top software engineering talent is excellent," says Juliano. He is less satisfied with the available managerial talent but acknowledges that in Silicon Valley, high-tech managers are plentiful but not particularly loyal: "I can get engineers with MBAs in Silicon Valley, but can I keep them?"
"If you imagine that a place like Silicon Valley is in its 10th or 11th generation of companies spiraling from the birth of Hewlett-Packard, Pittsburgh is only on its 3rd or 4th," says Juliano. To those who complain that the region isn't moving quickly enough into the new-technology arena, he points out that the steel mills weren't torn down that long ago. "People sometimes forget that Silicon Valley didn't happen overnight," he says. "It took three or four decades, and so will Pittsburgh."
Boulder: A Reluctant Eden
Some cities don't have to wait 40 years for a new-media boom. And some civic leaders don't have to play an active role in promoting that boom. Boulder, Colo., has witnessed an explosion of new-media and Internet companies despite the fact that it has actually tried to limit their growth. "Boulder isn't a slow-growth town," says one local high-tech entrepreneur. "It's a no-growth town."
What makes Boulder distinct is that everyone wants to live here. The Rocky Mountains are visible from just about any street corner. Mountain biking, skiing, and hiking are all within a 10-minute drive. Everywhere you go in this town, people say the same thing: "I came here for a summer, and I stayed for a lifetime."
Boulder is also an anomaly. It's a liberal city in a staunchly conservative state. It's a cultural oasis where smart, mostly white men and women sit in the sun sipping lattes and reading used books. And it's isolated geographically, separated from neighboring towns by mountains on one side and acres of green space on the other. Ten years ago the land along Route 36 leading to Boulder was given over to grazing; now a few remaining cows chew their cud 100 yards from sprawling cookie-cutter housing developments and glass-and-steel office complexes. "It's becoming another Orange County out there," laments one long-time resident. "But Boulder remains pristine."
To keep it that way, the city passed an ordinance in the early 1970s prohibiting real estate developers from building anything higher than 55 feet. Boulder has also at various times limited and monitored the design and construction of new parking facilities. The lack of decent parking for employees and clients is top among many local entrepreneurs' gripes. As a result, despite the area's astounding growth, local developers have had trouble keeping their buildings full. And that's forced them to use the same tactics that Rudin is using in Manhattan's financial district.
Paul Eklund is part owner of Broadway Suites, a brick office building located on the fringes of a pedestrian-only street called the Pearl Street Mall. As the Internet caught on, small new-media companies flocked to office buildings around the mall. But doing business there became harder as the city's limited-growth policy saw the demand for office space outstrip supply and parking grow scarce.
"If your clients can't park when they come to visit you, they might not come," says Eklund. It wasn't long before many companies began moving to "friendlier" outlying areas. A year ago Broadway Suites was facing a 15% vacancy rate.
Eklund decided to stem the tide with wire, offering his tenants everything from improved telephone services to T1 connections from their desktops. Because US West, the giant telecommunications company and Internet service provider (ISP), is not a favorite of many locals, he installed his own switch in the Broadway Suites building and now runs a T1 line directly from the building into Colorado Internet Coop, a member-owned nonprofit ISP that sells dedicated Internet service in Boulder . He also has a back-up line should the main line malfunction. Today the building is nearly back to full occupancy.
Boulder is loaded with two- and three-person high-tech operations that are a perfect fit for Eklund's building and others like it. Those companies don't require much physical space, but their bandwidth needs are enormous. Take MountainTop Computing, a maker of high-end software tools for building 3-D models of planetary surfaces for use in a wide range of applications. Its president, Jim Terhorst, is a 10-year veteran of Silicon Graphics, where he worked as a software engineer. "I had cut my hair and done the corporate thing for far too long," says Terhorst, who moved to Boulder from Silicon Valley in 1991.
Today Terhorst's blond hair is tied back in a ponytail, and he writes code on his own, communicating with coworkers and customers via the Internet. Terhorst shares his office with the vice-president of business development and MountainTop cofounder, Gary Anderson, who was off fly-fishing on a recent workday. "The people in Boulder have lives beyond their computers," says Terhorst.
While Terhorst chooses to stay close to Pearl Street Mall, other entrepreneurs see it as a launching pad. In 1993 Mark Kreloff, tired of the L.A. grind and anxious to provide a good life for his newborn son, moved his family to Boulder. "When we first talked about Boulder, I thought, 'Isn't that the trendy town where Mork and Mindy lived?" says Kreloff. "But on my first day here I bought a house."
In Boulder, Kreloff launched Inroads Interactive, a company that publishes CD-ROMs. Recruiting a president wasn't a problem: he got a call from Andy Brandt, a long-time friend and software engineer who was consulting in the Raleigh-Durham area but was looking to move. Brandt quickly went to work on the company's first project, Multimedia Dogs, an interactive encyclopedia of canine facts. In a business that has far too many developers and far too little shelf space, Inroads sold a whopping 50,000 units within 18 months--a blockbuster by industry standards. But as the company continues to grow and its demand for space increases, Kreloff can see the day when he might have to move it out of Boulder to a nearby town.
Inroads' president, however, would be happy to stay put. "Boulder is much more community-oriented than Research Triangle," explains Brandt. "It's not only a nice place to live, but the physical place and the people foster small developers." According to Brandt, Research Triangle is overrun with massive office developments that are not conducive to multimedia development. He much prefers the eccentricities of Boulder's commercial space: "You could be looking at an old Victorian house, and you'll find a gaming operation in the basement," says Brandt.
The downside for companies operating in Boulder is the perception on the part of customers that the action is going on elsewhere. "It's a real problem," says David Reifsnyder, CEO of Tesser, one of Boulder's larger ISPs. His executives have worried that a large New York-based client considering the company's Web-design services might pass because Tesser isn't in a well-known new-media center.
"The fact that we're in Boulder might still raise a few eyebrows at large corporations," says Ross Shell, Tesser's director of sales and marketing. Fortunately, there's plenty of business in Colorado, and Tesser had decided to avoid the recognition problem by concentrating on its home market.
To help publicize the city's new-media activity, Bradley Feld, CEO of Boulder-based Intensity Ventures, a firm that helps start and run software companies, has organized the Colorado Internet Kieretsu (kieretsu is the Japanese word for "community" and "collaboration"). The group has 50 members, and Feld hopes to have more than 200 by the end of the year. The kieretsu recently re-cruited public-relations giant Alexander Communication to bombard magazine and newspaper editors around the country with its story. It even has a name for the area: the Wired West.
Montreal: Vintage Port
The abandoned marine-fitting warehouse on the city's waterfront is at once a symbol of Montreal's past and future. With its broad exposed steel beams, the building still looks industrial. But inside, programmers in jeans and T-shirts type away furiously at their Octane computers--heavy-duty Unix machines made by Silicon Graphics. "Isn't it fitting that Montreal's new economy is being resurrected where its old economy once stood?" asks François Plamondon, senior vice-president and CFO for Discreet Logic, a software-development firm specializing in creating, editing, and compositing imagery for film, video, broadcast, and interactive games.
That old economy was founded on textile and clothing manufacturing, but today Montreal has lost much of that trade and many of its jobs. To lower its 12% unemployment rate, the city is hoping to attract new-media companies, and it's using its international flair, favorable exchange rates, and cheap space to do that.
Cheap space, in particular, is something Montreal has in great abundance: factories, warehouses, and office buildings stand noticeably empty everywhere you go. Particularly hard hit was the once-vibrant Old Port, which had seen all its major activities cease by 1978. Despite some sizable investments--a total of close to $100 million (in Canadian dollars) to refurbish the waterfront from the federally owned Old Port of Montreal Corp.--some developers remain fearful that economic instability will force the city to abandon the area.
But where some see risk, others see opportunity. In 1995 Richard Szalwinski, CEO, president, and founder of Discreet Logic, cofounded the Zone Corp., a real estate holding company. The Zone Corp. purchased the old warehouse from the city for about $1.2 million. In short order the Zone Corp., along with a small local architectural firm, redesigned the facility and retrofitted it with the latest in digital technology. The floors were lined with copper cables that can deliver information at speeds up to 100 Kb, and Discreet Logic's IBM, Macintosh, and Silicon Graphics machines were connected to the Internet via T1 lines.
Today the building is filled to capacity with 200 employees from Discreet Logic and 40 more from another multimedia venture. The Zone Corp., which holds an option on several waterfront buildings, has a grand vision of transforming the moldering canal area into a thriving cyberdistrict where multimedia, new-media, and Internet companies share ideas and bandwidth. "Everyone was talking about developing the area," says Szalwinski, "but no one was doing it. So I finally made the move."
To make the plan work, Szalwinski must compete with the rest of Montreal for software start-ups. Although down a bit from last year, the city's overall vacancy rate is 8.8%, which means that space is a bargain. Charles Crawford and David Rolph paid just $5 a square foot gross for office space when they launched Iron Horse Multimedia, a publisher of CD-ROM training and reference applications, at the end of 1996. Their offices are in a former clothing factory on crowded Ste. Catherine Street downtown. "Space is very cheap," says Crawford, "and all you need is an office and a computer to start one of these companies."
What Montreal offers in terms of rent, the province of Quebec matches in other incentives. Many start-ups receive a generous tax reimbursement of 50 cents on the dollar for investments in research and development. "We are in the city primarily for economic reasons and because we enjoy the way of life in Montreal," says Crawford. "We will probably sell very little here, but it makes sense to do business here."
Two other factors played a role in Crawford's decision to set up shop in Montreal. The first is the city's labor pool. As Crawford expands, he can harvest talent from one of the four major universities there--two French-speaking and two English-speaking. McGill--with its strong reputation in science and engineering and a growing computer science department--is only blocks from Crawford's office. Second is Montreal's growing film industry. (The city is home to Canada's National Film Board.) Nearly all of the filming and postproduction on Crawford's latest CD-ROM, The War Room, was done in Montreal.
Then there's the city itself. Montreal has virtually no crime: Crawford can walk among an eclectic mix of gothic churches, Greek-revival office buildings, and Chicago-style skyscrapers at any time of the day or night without fear. Montreal also caters to the young, a key factor for companies that rely on 20- and 30-something programmers who are given to keeping odd hours.
"Things go on all night," says Dieter J. Runge, a producer for Iron Horse, who recently moved to Montreal from Silicon Valley. "The city is a nice place to work and much more relaxed than the Valley pretends to be."
Although Iron Horse plans to distribute primarily in the United States, other multimedia companies have chosen Montreal because their customers are there. For example, many large pharmaceutical companies--drawn by the R&D credits--have a presence in the city. In 1995 Jean Lalonde and two partners, Pierre Bernier and Gaetan Ruel, began working in Lalonde's basement in Montreal, producing CD-ROMs for sales representatives at Merck. In a matter of months they created a company called I C Axon and moved into a small town house in the Italian section of the city. Today the company has 45 employees and more than $2 million in sales, and it is once again searching for another home. "The Old Port has great growth potential," says Lalonde, "though we have looked at the Peck Building."
Lalonde is referring to a brick office building that is yet another nursery for high-tech start-ups. It's located in the heart of the Plateau, a funky section of town where artists and computer programmers drink cappuccinos side by side in small cafés. At $5 to $10 a square foot, the former textile building houses such film and multimedia companies as Wild Heart Productions and Thoughtworks Multimedia. The arrival of French game-development giant UBI Soft on the top floor attests to Montreal's success at attracting new-media companies from outside North America.
To be sure, Montreal has deterrents to economic growth. October 1995's close referendum vote on Quebec's independence rattled the business community. And the language requirements--businesses may be expected to produce certain documents in both French and English--automatically eliminate the city from some American companies' lists.
When asked whether he believes the separatist movement has created economic instability, Crawford laughs: "It is a bigger deal in the press than it is in the streets." Fluent in French and English, the entrepreneur believes bilingualism will give him a competitive advantage should he attempt to distribute abroad or form partnerships in Europe. "Europeans feel very comfortable in Montreal," says Crawford.
Szalwinski is harsher. "I wish people would just stop arguing and get on with business," he says. He plans to do that himself, the Zone Corp. having contracted with Ernst & Young to market the benefits of the Old Port for new-media companies.
And to speed things along, the company has also contacted someone who's done this sort of thing before: William Rudin.
Of course Rudin himself has not enjoyed unalloyed success with his efforts. Two years after its birth, Silicon Alley still remains more hype than reality. No financial-district company has emerged as a major technology powerhouse, and growth in the number of new-media and Internet businesses doesn't compare with the growth of similar companies in cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Dallas. A glance at the marquee in the lobby of 55 Broad Street reveals the diminishing presence of smaller companies as more and more giants like Ernst & Young and IBM infiltrate the building.
Still, the number of new-media companies and jobs in the city has grown considerably. Hoping to extend the effort farther afield than 55 Broad Street, Weisbrod and some others have launched a campaign called Plug 'n' Go to give small companies in other parts of the district the same bandwidth Rudin's building offers--for similar low rates. Together these factors may make New York City the entrepreneurial breeding ground Weisbrod and Rudin envisioned.
Rudin, meanwhile, has turned his attention outside Manhattan. He is currently trying to replicate the Silicon Alley model in more than a dozen cities worldwide, doing everything from searching for local partners to building buildings. But wiring a neighborhood isn't enough. Rudin also wants to create a global network of buildings so that companies in Cambridge, Mass., for instance, can share massive amounts of data in real time with their counterparts in Los Angeles and London.
Silicon Alley has taught us that a single building does not a new-media mecca make. If Rudin situates his structures in areas that have Pittsburgh's university-nourished talent, Boulder's quality of life, and Montreal's financial appeal, maybe they'll succeed. But the cyberdistricts that boom may not be the ones you'd put your money on. After all, who would have imagined that Redmond, Wash., would turn out to be such a wonderful place for a software start-up?
Joshua Macht is an associate editor at Inc. magazine.
The Keystone To Success
The name Regis McKenna is synonymous with Silicon Valley. But the high-tech marketing genius who helped make Apple Computer what it is today--or, at any rate, what it was yesterday--is actually a Pittsburgher born and bred. Who better, then, to suggest ways for the former steel capital to attract and keep technology start-ups?
"I was born in Pittsburgh in 1939 and lived there until 1963. I have seen it as a booming steel town; and today, when I go back to visit friends and family, I see it struggling to reinvent itself for the post-industrial age.
"Pittsburgh wants to be more like the Silicons--Valley and Alley--a region of fervid technology-based entrepreneurialism. As someone who has lived and worked in Silicon Valley for more than 30 years, I know that won't be easy. Silicon Valley's success is not a factor of its geographic location nor of the presence of Stanford University. Rather it is due to something more intangible: a kind of unfettered innovation and rebelliousness of spirit that is almost impossible to emulate.
"My hometown may lack that spirit, but it has many other assets: excellent universities, enthusiastic hard-working people, and a desire to constantly renew itself. Yet most high-tech executives I have encountered know very little about the city. The problem, I believe, is that Pittsburgh has not made sufficient effort to become part of the expanding network of people, places, and organizations that is fueling the technology industry's growth.
"Rather than looking inward for ways to stimulate entrepreneurial activity, it should become a node on the network that includes such high-tech meccas as Silicon Valley, Austin, Phoenix, Portland, and Seattle. These communities make deals and forge alliances, invest in and recruit from one another. As this elite circle learns more about Pittsburgh, it will become more receptive to its message. After all, it is much easier to tell your story to friends than to strangers.
"There are many agents that can carry Pittsburgh's message to the relevant masses. Silicon Valley and other high-tech centers have recently seen an influx of Carnegie Mellon graduates, who should be acting as evangelists for their alma mater's hometown. Pittsburgh should be inviting industry leaders from around the world to discover the richness of the area through workshops and seminars; its universities should form joint ventures with such peer institutions as MIT and Stanford. And community, business, and educational leaders should have a presence at industry conferences and events, and be seen as making significant contributions to technology.
"In short, Pittsburgh offers much to attract those entrepreneurial technology companies that will create so many jobs in the future. But it must reach out before it can expect others to reach in."