From the Gold Rush of the 1850s to the Haight-Ashbury hippie movement of the 1960s, people have flocked to California in a quest to reinvent themselves. It is no less true today, except it's not prospectors or musicians, but struggling tech firms trying to tap into Silicon Valley's wealth of talent and ideas.
Nokia, the Finnish phone maker which has suffered a devastating decline since the smartphone revolution, has had a Silicon Valley office since 2010. The company employs about 500 employees in Sunnyvale, Calif. The office has all the trappings of the typical Silicon Valley office: employees clad in bluejeans and cowboy boots, and a cafeteria with gourmet fare, The Wall Street Journal reports. But Nokia may have already missed the party.
Nokia isn't the only company hoping that they can absorb California's innovative culture. Wal-Mart's Silicon Valley e-commerce research center has grown from 70 employees to 200 in the last year. Barnes & Noble is doubling down on its California presence as it plans to move the 400-person staff working on the Nook e-reader into a new 200,000-square-foot office in Palo Alto, Calif. next year.
For Nokia, it is a case of the "if you can't beat them, join them" strategy. The company's decline is directly related to the smartphone platforms and app ecosystems developed by Apple and Google. In 2003, Nokia sold 32.4 million phones in North America; by 2011, that number was just 3.9 million. Since the iPhone's release, Nokia's market value has fallen by 92%. Silicon Valley will have either destroyed Nokia or helped save it.
Job Opening (AllThingsD)
Hewlett-Packard is searching for a chief executive to head its British subsidiary Autonomy. Internal and external candidates are being considered to turn around the cloud software firm's "disappointing results," as Meg Whitman recently characterized them.
Gone Baby Gone (Bloomberg)
Wells Fargo is considering sending some technology jobs to India as it looks to shed about $1.7 billion in quarterly expenses. The San Francisco-based bank opened up a technology office in India in 2006. Then, it said was because of a dearth of U.S. tech workers, not costs.
What You're Worth (WSJ)
Apple is raising the hourly rates of its retail store employees by as much as 25%. The company's "Genius" tech support staff, who make as much as $30 an hour, had cited wages as a major source of frustration.
Related: The Real Genius of Apple Retail
Dream Purchase (San Jose Mercury News)
Oracle's Larry Ellison has bought the island of Lanai, the sixth largest in the Hawaiian archipelago. The island has about 3,200 residents and no traffic lights.
U.S. lawmakers are asking the Securities and Exchange Commission to consider an overhaul of the IPO process after the Facebook debacle. Meanwhile, the company's share price has risen in recent weeks as some big-name advertisers have come through. Monthly unique visitors dropped last month.
Revenge of the Nerds (NYT)
Google's expansion in Venice Beach, Calif. is causing an uproar among local weightlifters who worry that the search giant will take over the iconic Gold's Gym and turn it into office space.
Peace (Associated Press)
Cisco Chief Executive John Chambers says he wants to help bring 12,000 tech jobs to Israel's Arab districts. It is part of an effort by the state of Israel, Google, IBM and others to promote peace in the country.
Surprise, the Internet is actually a series of tubes, as the late Senator Ted Stevens infamously said. A new book explores who actually owns those tubes that carry our lives and why they often don't want the public to see inside of them.
Out with the Old (AllThingsD)
Rich Riley, a 14-year Yahoo veteran, is leaving the company. He had recently been promoted to head the company's Americas advertising unit, but he's out now that interim Chief Executive Ross Levinsohn has hired a former colleague for the role.
Buzz Around the Office
Mimicking the Dutch Masters (if it is hip, it is here)
Photographer Hendrik Kerstens uses toilet paper, trash bags and bubble wrap to turn his daughter into 17th century portraits.
List of the Day: The Second Interview
You've already clinched the first, now you just need to clinch the second.
1. Reference what you discussed the first time around.
2. Be relaxed, but not too relaxed.
3. Aim to impress everyone you re-meet.