I Just Love Silicon Valley

Before 2005, I always tell people – I love Seattle, WA, because of the great trees, lakes, mountains and great cities. At that time, every of my US trip is in Seattle. It turned out that I said that just because I never visited Silicon Vally. This is exactly the reason people travel – never make decisions about what you want most before you explore more places and lifestyle – the type of seeking for something unknown.

Why I Love Sillicon Valley

Althouh I would say many things: the convinience of access (no transition of flight is needed from Shanghai), the always sunny weather, the bay, the nice spread of cities, and realtively very good traffic, the key is the intellectural power and innovation you can get in this particular area.

I just had a whole day conversation with eight great people in the history of Internet/IT industry, and I admire so much about their clarify of pricinciple and mission, the extereme passion for something that has big impact, and the strong brain muscle to see things through.

Inspiration

People are really group animal – when you stay with people like this mind, you inevitably get affected, and think, and behave the similar way. I, as an ENFP type of person, inspiration, and theory, and people, and something new, and talking, etc, are so important to me. I got exactly what I wanted in this bay area.

I simply love it. It is the best place I can imagine to be (well, learning from the previous lesson, a better way to put it is, it is a better place than Seattle. Period.)

Although with busy schedule and cost concern, everytime I tried to postpone or cancel a sillicon valley trip, but every time, I am so excited about what I see here, and never regret for a single minute that I am here.

If you are technical guy, and especially an ENFP guy, you definitely will enjoy the place as much as I can. For the rest personality type, I think you will like it too (althogh I cannot say since I am not other type).

I am a Local

From the day one I am here, I refuse to use a GPS. I would rather get lost and wander for a while in the unfamiliar street to build my sense of this area than following the GPS direction. Now, for most of the places I go, I just drive there without the help of any map or GPS. The most visited places are the down town of each of the small cities – Castro St. in Mountain view (and Villa), University Ave in Palo Alto, Murphy in Sunnyvale, and Sand Hill/Stanford area. I am also used to be I-280, I-880, I-680, US-101, CA-85, CA-237 highway system here, and also the El Camino Real, Middlefield Rd, the Page Mill Rd… See, I am a local already, and I know where to take nice brunch in the morning in this area. I just hope one day I can bring Wendy to the area (she never been here), and show her my favorite places.

Again, too late, time to sleep. It is 12:30 Pacific Time.

P.S. Wendy SMSed that Yifan got angry with her again. Hmmm… What happened?

10 Comments

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  2. If you are an entreprenuer thinking about starting a new hightech company of some sort, especially in the computer/internet field, Silicon Valley may still be the place to be, but for the rest of people who are destined to be a worker bee, Silicon Valley’s salary would be overshadowed by its extremely high cost of living, from tax to gas price to housing. Silicon Valley is no longer a best cost effective place to run a business. It’s hard to say that it would ever regain its past glory in high technology because web has made geographical location irrelevant.

  3. That’s also how I felt. I visit SV from time to time. I like it from a visitor point of view. But I am always hasitant about moving down there (I work in software field). Expensive housing is one concern. But the thing I am really concerned is work/life balance, it seems like people there usually work more harder than people here in the midwest. Is the extra compensation deserve the extra labor I put in? Something to ponder about.

    On the other hand, I understand it’s a very good place for startup, and is convenient for Chinese (because of all the stores and restaurant).

  4. If you consider having to spend a million dollar to buy a house that would cost only 1/3 of that in other places, all the “extra” in income would have been consumed already. The actual income in the pocket is actually less than people work in similar jobs in less expensive states. BTW, engineers in less expensive states don’t earn proportionally less in compensation as compared to difference in housing prices. For example, a software engineer in Austin Texas working for IBM usually earns about the same as his peer working in San Jose. The difference is, cost of housing in Austin is about 1/4 of that in Bay area. Now think about it, how much extra money he can save by not paying the overpriced home.

    About Chinese food, yes, Silicon Valley has more choices in Chinese cuisine, but it definitely doesn’t have the best Chinese food. Vancouver B.C., or LA in the south definitely have better food there.

  5. Unless you are at the top of echelon in SV, it is not that great of a place to live for a worker bee. So it all depends what you do in SV.

  6. jianshuo, drop by my place in east san jose; i’ll show u this side of paradise, then u can decide if u still like this area

  7. It seems like all comments are negative. I just moved here from Sacramento. I lived in LA, La Jolla, Chapel Hill, and another small town 3 hours drive to Tahoe area. They all have different but interesting traits. From the posts I read at your website, I would still think Jianshuo would like Silicon Valley. I don’t have much preference for cities, but I like it here. Things are expensive for a reason. Otherwise, no one would be here.

  8. I have to agree with most people who made the comments here. You would be right if you said this 10 years ago. But today Silicon Valley is losing its edge in almost every aspect, even in the area of technological innovation. As for the weather, I think southern California is better. Do you realize that you can rarely swim in the ocean of northern California coast even in the summer? :-)

    Yes, you may need to see the other side of paradise. But don’t have to be in east San Jose. Just cross Highway 101 from where you stay to see East Palo Alto…

  9. Unless you can run your own show in SV, one doesn’t have much time to be “intellectual” other than running round and round the wheel like a hamster day after day. That’s why I moved. I think SV offers a very narrow sense of intellectualism (the obvious being in the area of high-tech). Other than that, not much.

  10. Have a cup of tea + reading you blog, is the one of the most enjoyable thing duirng a day!

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