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Thanks to +Gerry Canavan for reminding me about this article from last spring. The money quote, of course, is:

"Hammerbacher looked around Silicon Valley at companies like his own, Google (GOOG), and Twitter, and saw his peers wasting their talents. 'The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads,' he says. 'That sucks.'"

When I was bouncing around the Triangle this past year looking for jobs, this sentiment felt depressingly apt. I applied for several jobs at SEO-optimization firms (and even interviewed at one...I wasn't going to turn down anything at that point) and was a little depressed about it. Were "exciting jobs in internet marketing" the only available career path available for liberal arts majors/grad school dropouts? Luckily, they weren't, but it often felt like that.

Point is, it's good to know that this is probably another bubble. I mean, it's not good that in another year or two we're going to have another tech burst and subsequent economic troubles, but it IS good that this kind of silliness will eventually pass and tech start-ups might get back to doing something, you know, useful.
Tech bubbles happen, but we usually gain from the innovation left behind. This one—driven by social networking—could leave us empty-handed.
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