A mom recently asked my opinion about tech internships for her college aged daughter who is interested in Silicon Valley.
I can think of three great options:
1. Go for an internship with a VC firm like True’s TEC program. You’ll work solo with an up and running startup and as a group of interns with True, getting exposed to tech experts and companies from across the Valley. It’s the best of both worlds – hands-on at a startup and learning about the Valley – and perfect for people thinking about making a career somewhere in tech. I’ve seen True’s program hands-on and it’s great, going strong and into its 6th year. Similar programs have started up, for example Kleiner’s Fellows. I’ve no experience with those, but given the caliber of firm behind them I’d definitely check them out. Best for aspiring technologists.
2. Start a company with one of the incubators like Y Combinator. There’s nothing like learning about being an entrepreneur than actually doing it. This is perfect for groups of students who know that they want to focus on being startup founders. Y Combinator originated this idea and is a great program. Others like 500 Startups and Tech Stars have created great reputations as well. There are lots and lots of incubators nowadays (not all of them take student teams). Do your research before applying to one of the lesser known ones. Best for aspiring founders.
3. Join Google’s Summer of Code to get paid for contributing to an open source project. It’s been around for years and continues to attract strong students and mentors. It’s a great hands-on experience in developing real software with the help of someone guiding you through. We’ve participated through WordPress. You can also skip the Google part and just jump directly into an open source project, helping out for a summer and making a name for yourself by contributing real bug fixes and code into a shipping product. Best for aspiring coders.
Please add other suggestions in the comments.
I was at dinner at Patrick Mueller’s, a Swiss friend, when he asked me if I wanted to see his new electric car. “Sure!”, I said, walking to his garage expecting a Tesla or a Prius. Instead he showed me a close to 100 year old Detroit Electric. He’s upgraded it with a new battery, the rest is pretty much all original, including the motor. He gets over 100km on a charge and drives it to work and back every day (well, it being Switzerland, I’m guessing every sunny day). We took a test drive and the car feels much more modern than something from that era. One unusual and somewhat disconcerting detail is the car’s steering wheel – it doesn’t have one, you drive it using a lever instead. Patrick thinks there are fewer than 100 of these left in the world (of about 13,000 built).
Tomorrow marks both the start of another hopefully amazing Automattic company meetup and my return to work after a three month sabbatical. I’ve spent this summer away from work, enjoying lots of free time with my family, reading about twenty books, hovering around inbox zero for weeks at a time, traveling home to Switzerland, and generally enjoying a slower, less connected and less scheduled pace. Now I’m ready to dive back in!
SF Giant Sweep is a project between San Francisco’s Mayor and the Giants baseball team to help keep the city clean and beautiful. They had a contest for students to enter poster designs. Sophie entered a collage she made from recycled plastic and packaging and she won 1st place for the high school category – how awesome is that! #prouddad Her poster will be displayed around the city to promote the Giant Sweep project (she won some money for herself and her school as well):
Update (10/13): The poster is now up at various bus stops:
Tiger Global has recently invested over $50M in Automattic secondary stock purchases. After many years of being backed by a great team of investors who have been with Automattic since the early days – Polaris Partners, True Ventures, Radar Partners, and the New York Times Company – Tiger has joined this illustrious group by purchasing shares from early Automattic investors and employees. Along with the on-going growth of WordPress (now powering over 18% of sites on the internet) and the amazing Automattic team (now over 170 employees), this investment is another milestone in our journey towards building a great company.
It’s noteworthy that Tiger has recently invested in companies like SurveyMonkey and Eventbrite, and before that companies like LinkedIn and Facebook. Those names provide a sense of how far Automattic has come and how we’re poised to enter an exclusive circle of successful software companies that are built to last.
Matt has shared his perspective on this deal on Ma.tt.