Prior to the 1960’s, the twenty-dive mile stretch of farmland known as Santa Clara was bustling with the workers of the cherry, apricot, and prune orchards. It was also home to Libby’s, which at one time was the world’s largest canneries. However, canning soon gave way to the research and development of electricity, communication, and eventually the technology and electronics manufacturing that is seen today in the Silicone Valley through software design, silicon wafer polishing, and the famous Apple computers. No longer is the green of lush orchards filling the landscape, but the construction and development that accompany the profit the world’s foremost tech companies are turning out
The Role of Stanford University
It is for good reason that Stanford University has close ties the workings of the Silicon Valley. It was originally founded and started by Leland Stanford, the railroad tycoon who owned the Central Pacific Railroad and worked to complete the first transcontinental railroad. It had a strong engineering department, and graduates were always involved in the latest research projects affecting the growth and settlement of California. The opportunity for wireless development came after a Stanford graduate purchased wireless patent rights from a Danish scientist. He got the financial backing of Stanford, and through his research and their funding, he established the Federal Telegraph Company in what is now Silicon Valley. This was only the beginning of the tech industry’s developments in the area.
Over the years, scientists, engineering, designers, programmers, and those with a dream have all flocked to Silicon Valley for a slice of the development pie. Although there is always room for growth and expansion, several companies dominate the electronics and programming industry. Apple, Alphabet (formerly known as Google and its affiliates), and Facebook are the leading software and tech giants. However, finance is creeping in on the territory, with Wells Fargo and Visa rounding out the top five of the largest companies in the area.