Is this the ‘Nerd Economy’?

By Posted in New Relic News, SaaS, Top Post 30 April 2012

I think so. The future of the economy and economic recovery lies with the ‘nerds’- specifically, those nerds that code. And this is a good thing. They are smart. There has never been a better time to be a nerdpreneur. San Francisco may be the hub, but this is a global movement. Marc Andreessen touched on this in the WSJ: Software is eating the world.

From Marc’s WSJ post:  

Why is this happening now?

Six decades into the computer revolution, four decades since the invention of the microprocessor, and two decades into the rise of the modern Internet, all of the technology required to transform industries through software finally works and can be widely delivered at global scale.

Over two billion people now use the broadband Internet, up from perhaps 50 million a decade ago, when I was at Netscape, the company I co-founded. In the next 10 years, I expect at least five billion people worldwide to own smartphones, giving every individual with such a phone instant access to the full power of the Internet, every moment of every day.

On the back end, software programming tools and Internet-based services make it easy to launch new global software-powered start-ups in many industries—without the need to invest in new infrastructure and train new employees. In 2000, when my partner Ben Horowitz was CEO of the first cloud computing company, Loudcloud, the cost of a customer running a basic Internet application was approximately $150,000 a month. Running that same application today in Amazon’s cloud costs about $1,500 a month.”

A New Crop of Companies Is Emerging
This isn’t the first time software and technology has been at the forefront.  But it’s the first time developers are front and center.  Not CIOs. Not IT solution sellers. DEVELOPERS. Redmonk has been talking about how developers are The New Kingmakers and wielding unprecedented power thanks to the cloud, open source, and other macro trends as Andreessen wrote about. I agree. We see it every day.

Think about it. Splunk worth $3B with $100M+ in revenue from log file search. Facebook defining their culture as The Hacker WayGithub is being wooed by big time investors (which they don’t need or care about!). CodeAcademy and Udemy are signing up more students than probably all the ivy league schools combined. Heroku was bought for a quarter billion dollars. Apple is one of the most valuable company in the world.  Tried to hire a developer recently? It’s hard. Even my 8-year old daughter said she wants to learn to code (which is just plain awesome!). TechCrunch just wrote about the “great engineering shortage of 2012“. It’s good to be a nerd right now.

Today, companies can’t even succeed without a data API for hackers. Ask Box.net. Ask Salesforce. Ask any relevant software company. Social. Mobile. Global. Big Data. APIs. These software strategies are more critical than ever before.

Be nice to nerds. Chances are youll end up working for one.”  – Charles J. Sykes

Tweet #TheNewKingmakers

This isn’t temporary. This is the future. More and more (and more) businesses will be going public and/or profiting on the creative leadership of innovative developers. New Relic is one of these companies, but there are dozens more. Atlassian, Github, Twilio, ActiveState, Amazon AWS… (Did I mention New Relic?) We’re all enjoying the developer’s rise as a buyer and influencer within companies large and small.

Build tools for developers. Then Win.
The New Kingmakers: How Developers Conquered the WorldIt’s good to be a developer. In 2012, it is also good to be providing tools to the developer. DevOps and NoOps and Kinda-sorta-ops is real. We think these guys and gals who sling code are going to be the ones who change the world and drive the next wave of growth for the world’s economy.

Note/Question: We don’t use the term “nerd” in a derogatory or negative context. Quite the contrary. We’ve given out thousands of shirts with “Data Nerd” on them. Our customers seem to love ‘em. If you don’t like the term – do you have any other suggestions? Geek? Hacker? I could say “Developer Economy” but it doesn’t have the same energy.

Get your free digital copy of Stephen O’Grady’s The New Kingmakers today!

Celebrate the Nerd Economy with a copy of The New Kingmakers – the new book from RedMonk analyst Stephen O’Grady. Simply sign up for a free New Relic account (which takes about 30 seconds, no credit card required) and the book is automatically yours. Or even better, deploy the New Relic agent today and get a free Nerd Life t-shirt to commemorate your status as one of today’s power players. And be sure to spread the word to your friends.

About the author

patrick@newrelic.com'Chief Marketing Officer of New Relic. Love SaaS. Love Data. Love New Relic.

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