Overhype

by Mike Masnick




This Doesn't Seem Right: Military Junta To Build Silicon Valley

from the yeah,-nice-try dept

Over the years, we've seen time after time after time when some region of the world would suddenly declare that it was going to be the "new Silicon Valley." Usually, these places had little to no idea about what actually made Silicon Valley what it is -- and assumed that maybe with a little money and an incubator, suddenly their region would be a tech hotspot as well. Usually, they at least have some clue about what it takes -- they just don't realize all of the components. Sometimes, though, it seems like some people don't even bother to understand at all what it takes to build up a technology industry. For example, two things that clearly don't seem to go together are "military junta" and "Silicon Valley," yet, apparently the military junta in Myanmar believes it can establish its own Silicon Valley, pretty much by declaring it so. Of course, the fact that the country banned Google earlier this month suggests that its local version of Silicon Valley has a long way to go.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Jul 2006 @ 4:40pm

    Does Silicon Valley have any idea?

    Silicon Valley doesn't make any silicon products anymore. Increasingly, companies in silicon valley are basically shell companies that hype the hell out of a useless product or speculative technology, then blow it all on executive compensation. Most of the science come from other places anyway.

    The Valley is not too well equipped for the biotech revolution -- it has no agricultural experience, unlike Midwestern farm states. There aren't very many pharmaceutical companies there either -- just some minor outposts, and no major medical centers other than Stanford. (Stanford is not a major biotech power.) The nanotech stuff is usually built in custom batches in university labs, or an obscure factory in New Mexico. The major universities in the area (Stanford, Berkeley, UCSF) have no space to build new labs, so they are being built at places like Iowa or Georgia.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous of course, 25 Jul 2006 @ 4:54pm

    ridiculous despots

    A horrible backwards place with little to recommend it
    except its ancient history. I'm surprised they have
    even heard of silicon valley. I'd laugh if it wasn't so
    sad. Before they focus on a technology incubator
    they might work on the clean drinking water and
    sanitation issues... Oh, and a reliable electric
    utility system would be helpful too. It's hard to perfect
    your 65nm process when you have to keep running to
    the john due to dysentery.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Dan Moutal, 25 Jul 2006 @ 5:31pm

      Re: ridiculous despots

      Myanmar is an amazing place with amazing people, gorgeus scenery... the list goes on

      The only issue with myanmar (and it is a big one) is that the government is terrible, this inturn causes lots of the poverty and lack of infrastrucxture seen in tghe country.

      Still to anyoen who is travelling in the region, if you have some time Myanmar will not disapoint.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous of Course, 25 Jul 2006 @ 5:48pm

        Re: Re: ridiculous despots

        I agree. It is one of the most beautiful places on earth.
        And one of the most corrupt places on earth. I couldn't
        recommend it as a tourist spot until substantial
        improvements had been made in the government.
        It is a dangerous place.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Dan Moutal, 25 Jul 2006 @ 6:10pm

          Re: Re: Re: ridiculous despots

          When I was there I never felt unsafe, none of the guidebooks had any warnings that seemed any worse than any of the surrounding countries (except Laos, that was more dangerous, but still amazing).

          I think some parts of the US are probably more dangerous than Myanmar

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous of Course, 25 Jul 2006 @ 6:51pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: ridiculous despots

            I'm glad to hear life has improved there.
            In the late 1980's the riots were fierce.

            Until the NLD is allowed to hold a constitutional
            convention I don't believe the changes will last.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Ang san supporter, 27 Jul 2006 @ 2:08am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: ridiculous despots

            The trouble with visiting Myanmar is that any sales tax or visa fees you pay are going towards supporting the junta, which is currently engaging in the slaughtering of thousands of members of the countries ethnic minorities.
            The country is in a state of civil war. Its not being widely reported because foreigners, both tourists and reporters are barred from visiting the border areas where most of the fighting is.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Xcetron, 25 Jul 2006 @ 5:21pm

    Do they even have a valley? or Silicon?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ron (profile), 25 Jul 2006 @ 6:40pm

    Myanmar

    "Yadanabon Myothit" Yup, rolls off the tongue. Maybe enough force will generate something. The government was going to "invite" investors to participate. I wonder how many rounds of ammunition accompany each "invitation"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jezsik, 25 Jul 2006 @ 7:43pm

    It's not dangerous

    Furthermore, the only problem with Burma's government, as far as the US is concerned, is that it's not pro-US.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mike, 25 Jul 2006 @ 11:11pm

    Who do tourist dollars help?

    This page hosts a discussion about the costs / benefits of visiting Myanmar http://english.dvb.no/letstalk.php?id=25. Certainly the people there are desperately poor. Unfortunately the military dominates the country's economy. To go or not to go is a personal decision, but one that should not be made lightly.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    chris, 26 Jul 2006 @ 3:44am

    amazing

    What makes it one of the most beautiful places on earth?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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