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the supply of investors with the courage to back these ideas, and of mentors and advisers, mostly people with a successful history of entrepreneurship, willing to put in the time to nurture them.
A couple of years ago, the situation seemed much more dire for the local technology community. A deep recession was settling in, people were losing their jobs by the thousands, capital seemed harder to come by, and memories of the Route 128 glory days were growing increasingly distant.
But entrepreneurs here, being entrepreneurial, have taken matters into their own hands, capitalizing on Web 2.0-era innovations to bootstrap new ventures for far less money than used to be required, and getting more creative about the whole funding question. (That’s what the recent Angel Boot Camp, and our “Angel Tsunami” panel at yesterday’s Xconomy Summit on Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship, were all about.) Entrepreneurs have been building on the technologies this region knows best— networking and storage, telecommunications, robotics, security, and healthcare IT, to name just a few—while also creating brand-new epicenters of innovation in areas like advanced batteries, biofuels, gaming and entertainment, mobile apps and advertising, e-commerce, and business-to-business applications.
But the Bay Area has its own areas of technological strength and its own styles of entrepreneurship, and Xconomy wants to tell those stories as well. I’m going to miss writing about Boston (and believe, me I plan to take a dose of New England’s hard-headed skepticism with me to San Francisco). But I know that I’m leaving at a time when the region is on the upswing, meaning that whatever small contributions I’ve made won’t be missed much. Moreover, I know that Greg, along with Ryan McBride and Erin Kutz and all of the great reporters who contribute to our Boston pages, are going to continue to cover the stories of New England innovators with all of the breadth, depth, and insight that Xconomy strives to provide.
And I’m not really disappearing. Xconomy is a national network now, and I’ll still have a hand in our coverage of mobile technology and other areas where New England shines. So if you’re tempted to think of my departure as yet another example of Silicon Valley vacuuming up Boston’s talent, don’t. It’s really the opposite: a case of a company born and bred in Boston that’s now poised to export its business model to the Bay Area. For me and my colleagues, this isn’t an ending—it’s just another beginning.
[Editor’s Note: Xconomy readers are invited to an open party to welcome Greg Huang to Boston and say farewell to Wade. It’s at 5:00 p.m. next Tuesday, June 22, at the Cambridge Brewing Company at One Kendall Square, Cambridge.]
For a full list of my columns, check out the World Wide Wade Archive. You can also subscribe to the column via RSS or e-mail, and you can download Pixel Nation, an e-book version of the first 80 columns, as a free PDF file or a $4.99 Kindle edition.