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Aug 23, 2011

HP and Sustaining Tech Innovation

Internet IconEver since HP made its shocking announcement about the TouchPad and its PC business I have been worndering about this question.

All Things D, John Paczkowski: Is Innovation at HP Dead?

I remember when I first moved to the Silicon Valley in the 1990s. It was exciting to see the HP campus, the Xerox PARC, and the Apple campus. All innovators that created the Valley and the tech industry that now employs me today. It is sad to see some of these titans fall by the wayside.

Certainly HP will be around for years to come. But will it be same company that Bill Hewlett and David Packard founded in that Palo Alto garage? It sure doesn't look like it. And based on the nose dive of the stock price, investors don't think so either. If you read the article, not only have patents at HP dropped significantly, but their lead in the ink business does not look sustainable.

So this begs the question. Can a tech company sustain innovation after its founder or founders leave? The simple answer appears to be no. It seems pretty difficult to create a company based on a great idea. It appears to be even more difficult to create a company that creates great ideas. Thoughts?

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