Posts about entrepreneurship

Make the World Better

Three ways to make the world better. First, Kiva is lets you loan money directly to an entrepreneur of your choice. Kiva provides loans through partners (operating in the countries) to the entrepreneurs. Those partners do charge the entrepreneurs interest (to fund the operations of the lending partner). Kiva pays the principle back to you but does not pay interest. And if the entrepreneur defaults then you do not get your capital paid back (in other words you lose the money you loaned). See my post: Helping Capitalism Make the World Better (if you donate to Kiva I have a Curious Cat Kivan – comment to have you link added).

Second, donate using the widget displayed in this post: to William Kamkwamba who built his own windmill in Malawi to get electricity for his home. The donations go to help him with his education and engineering projects. He is a young student and engineer. I have donated $50, I would love to see readers donate – do so and send me a link to your personal blog or personal home page and I will update this post with a link (only to a site obviously associated with you – I reserve the right to link or not link to whoever I want). [the campaign is over so I removed the widget – $943 was raised, the goal was $2,000]. A recent post to his blog: My sisters and cousins with their first books:

Some well-wishers sent many children’s books that are written or take place in countries around Africa in addition to English and American classics such as Where the Wild Things Are. All the children in my neighborhood, most of whom are cousins or sisters share these new books.

Third, create a Kiva like setup for donations that could be used to provide a source for finding remarkable people that have plans for possible donated funds. The potential is huge.

Related: Children’s booksAppropriate TechnologyWhat Kids can LearnLesson on Life$100 Laptop UpdateMillennium Development Goals

Interview of Steve Wozniak

Excellent interview of Steve Wozniak from Founders at Work: Stories of Startups’ Early Days by Jessica Livingston, to be published in a few months.

I said, “No, I’m never going to leave Hewlett-Packard. It’s my job for life. It’s the best company because it’s so good to engineers.” It really treated us like we were a community and family, and everyone cared about everyone else. Engineers—bottom of the org chart people—could come up with the ideas that would be the next hot products for the company. Everything was open to thought, discussion and innovation. So I would never leave Hewlett-Packard. I was going to be an engineer for life there.

Sounds like Google today, see: How Google Works focused on engineering and Enginners at Google Make Decisions.
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The Future is Engineering

Do Great Engineering Schools Beget Entrepreneurism? by Brent Edwards provides two great links.

How to Kick Silicon Valley’s Butt by Guy Kawasaki:

Focus on educating engineers. The most important thing you can do is establish a world-class school of engineering. Engineering schools beget engineers. Engineers beget ideas. And ideas beget companies. End of discussion.

If I had to point to the single biggest reason for Silicon Valley’s existence, it would be Stanford University—specifically, the School of Engineering. Business schools are not of primary importance because MBAs seldom sit around discussing how to change the world with great products.

Why Startups Condense in America:

You need a great university to seed a silicon valley, and so far there are few outside the US. I asked a handful of American computer science professors which universities in Europe were most admired, and they all basically said “Cambridge” followed by a long pause while they tried to think of others. There don’t seem to be many universities elsewhere that compare with the best in America, at least in technology.

Both essays make many excellent points – read them! Continue reading