Bob Metcalfe is Professor of Innovation and Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. He was an Internet pioneer, starting at MIT and Harvard in 1970, and continuing into the 1990s in Silicon Valley. He invented Ethernet in 1973 at Xerox Parc and founded 3Com Corporation in 1979. In 2011, 1.2 billion new Ethernet ports were shipped -- 400 million wired and 800 million WiFi -- and 3Com, after peaking with $5.7B in revenue in 1999 and after 30 years of independent operation, became part of HP. In the 1990s, Bob was Publisher-CEO of InfoWorld and wrote an Internet column read weekly by half a million IT professionals. In the 2000s, Bob was General Partner of the venture capital firm Polaris Venture Partners near Boston. Professor Metcalfe now lives in Austin, Texas and aims to help make Austin a better Silicon Valley.
Many innovators lament that the time-honored VC model does not work for what they call “cleantech” or “greentech.” They raise as proof the capital intensivity and long timeframes for energy start-ups.... Read more »