This will be my first year covering Austin’s DeveloperWeek for Hi-Tech Chic and I’m intrigued on what I will learn while attending. Austin is also known for SXSW, Austin City Limits, Game Development, Filmmaking, and Live Music but what is Austin’s technology history? How did Austin become the epicenter of technology for Texas and possibly for the nation?
I grew up in a time of Austin when it was just large companies like IBM or National Instruments. That all changed in the late 1990s when Austin became the technology epicenter of the Texas. Austin experienced the quick dot-com boom at a rather fast pace and then the dot-com bust just as quickly. Austin took a hit in the early 2000 but pulled through with companies like Dell and AMD having headquarters in Austin. If you look at it Austin housed some great innovators and developers for decades.
As we all know Michael Dell built his first PC in his dorm room at the University of Texas and started selling his PC’s with only $1,000 backing. To give you a bit a background about how Micheal became an innovator focusing on cost here are some facts from Wikipedia.
- In January 1984, Dell banked on his conviction that the potential cost savings of a manufacturer selling PCs directly had enormous advantages over the conventional indirect retail channel.
- In January 1984, Dell registered his company as “PC’s Limited”.
- Operating out of a condominium, the business sold between $50,000 and $80,000 in upgraded PCs, kits, and add-on components.
- In May 1984, Dell incorporated the company as “Dell Computer Corporation” and relocated it to a business center in North Austin (down the street from me).
- Fast forward to the next millennium where Forbes estimates Dell’s net worth as of February 2017 at $20.8 billion.
Companies more so now recognize the influence that developers have in product development, IT decision making, and strategic business outcomes. Austin’s DeveloperWeek invites all Southwest developers to acquire a view of all the tools and technologies that supercharge development. This year the DeveloperWeek will include over 1,500 developers, tech executives, and entrepreneurs that will us hind sight on the latest in App Development, VR Dev, FinTech Dev, and Machine Learning.
I will be attending the events for Austin’s DeveloperWeek so keep checking back on Hi-Tech Chic and also on Twitter for live coverage at @hitechchic.