The first time the phrase “Silicon Valley” was used to describe a pretty swath of orchards south of San Francisco where early computer chip manufacturers were concentrating was in 1970. That was nearly 50 years ago.
Branding can have impressive endurance. In a half century, the phrase has gone from a near-literal reference to the silicon used in computer chips to a more general phrase to describe an industry cluster. It now defines an entrepreneurial approach or ethos that is considered the bedrock of today’s economic dynamism — one after which many a legislator lusts.
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