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HP, Giant pioneer of Silicon Valley and the origin of the student, professor collaborations

DIGITAL VENTURES June 21, 2018 4:44 PM


Recently, both the public and private sectors in Thailand are beginning to be mindful and focus on adaptation to technology. Also, the industrial sectors concerning technology also need to quickly develop and increase competitiveness with other countries. Surely, reliable and continuous support from public and private sectors are the key to advancing technology for a country. Today, we will share a case study about “HP”, a tech firm that was established by support from the academic sector which has become successful in the global scale.

“HP”, a famous global tech firm which originated from the support of a university professor.

HP or Hewlett-Packard Company was named after its founders, William Hewlett, and David Packard. Hewlett and Packard were friends at the School of Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. They both dreamt of owning an electronics company of their own.



Frederick Terman, dean of Stanford University’s School of Engineering at that time, worried that his graduates from the electrical engineering major will not have good opportunities for employment in California. This is because, back in the days, most electronics firms were located on the east coast. Terman wanted to solve this problem by encouraging his students to create electronics companies of their own. Hewlett and Packard were the first group of students to follow Terman’s idea.

From a garage to the “Birthplace of Silicon Valley”.



Hewlett and Packard decided to set up their company at the HP Garage in Palo Alto, California, USA, an area close to Stanford University. They received knowledge and some funding support from Terman that they were able to produce their first product, the Audio Oscillator, designed to test audio devices. Their first customer was Walt Disney who used HP’s Audio Oscillator in film productions. This was a first big step for HP.



HP’s story inspired several other famous tech firms in the world especially in the Bay Area of California or better known as “Silicon Valley”. Up until now, thousands of tech companies originated here. It is considered to be the center for innovation and technology development of the world. The HP Garage is celebrated as the “Birthplace of Silicon Valley” and was officially registered by The National Register of Historic Place in 2007.


Get to know “Frederick Terman”: The professor behind the success of Silicon Valley.


Frederick Terman was an academic and dean at Stanford University’s School of Engineering from 1940 to 1950. Aside from encouraging and supporting students to set up tech firms, Terman also spearheaded the establishment of Stanford Industrial Park. Part of the university’s area was rented to high technology firms, so they can set up companies under the concept to build a center for high technology companies within universities’ premises. The initial idea was for the companies to recruit students from Stanford University. This was a great opportunity to create jobs for the students. As a result, space was utilized by many famous tech firms such as Varian Associates, Eastman Kodak, General Electric, Shockley, Lockheed, and several others. HP also moved their office into this space.



From his fresh ideas and support, Frederick Terman is named the “Father of Silicon Valley” which is the largest center for tech firms in the world.

This is another page in history that shows the success of collaborations in driving and developing innovation. From a beginning within the walls of a university to an element for success for the global tech firms of today.

Thailand has also begun projects to support and drive innovation from its origin. An example is U.REKA which aims to support and encourage innovation from Deep Technology. Deep Tech is believed to be the strength and an important mechanism for economic development in Thailand. For more details, visit How Thailand 4.0 Can Compete with the Global Economy in the Deep Tech Era: Perspectives from Orapong Thien-Ngern, CEO of Digital Ventures and How Can Thailand Use Deep Tech Ecosystem to Compete in the Global Knowledge-Based Economy. Follow us here as Digital Ventures updates projects that support Thailand’s innovation like U.REKA.


Reference: web.stanford.eduwww.netvalley.com