Stop Comparing. Start Building.

February 27, 2010   

For whatever reason, every six months or so there’s a flair-up on local listservs or blogs more or less titled “NYC vs Silicon Valley.”

These types of comparisons, by entrepreneurs and pundits new and old(er), are not remotely productive, and they’re almost always focused on the wrong, anecdotal data.

Truth be told, we should look at NYC’s ecosystem not relative to other ecosystems, but holistically in regards to itself. Let’s stop comparing ourselves to the valley, like a middle-schoolers anxiously compare themselves to their peers; instead, let’s think about what we have and what we need to do better. If there are things we need to do better, sure, let’s look elsewhere for great models to inspire us, but this tit-for-tat comparison has got to go.

Do we have the self-confidence and ambition to do this?

Following this post, I’m going to layout what I believe is the “State of New York Technology.” In that post, I won’t compare New York to Silicon Valley unless I find something in New York that I wish we could improve on. Then I’ll look at examples found elsewhere. I’m keeping these two posts separate because I want this one to be a retrospective “Stop Comparing. Start Building.” cry, and the next one to only look inward and forward, other cities be-damned.

UPDATE: I’ve now posted my State of the NY Tech Industry piece.

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