Sundar: Let me tell you a little bit about my journey to Silicon Valley from India 22 years ago. Growing up in India like many of you I got my first telephone when I was 12 in my case it turned out to be a rotary phone so it wasn’t that great for selfies but I still love to call my friends to play with it and sometimes take it apart.
That telephone cemented my fascination with technology. I remember in my parent’s house in Chennai reading about the invention of the transistor at Bell Labs. Of course that initial invention helped found Ward, became known as Silicon Valley and out of that came companies like Semiconductor and Intel and all the computers and software that we all use today. You can draw a direct line from that invention to the technology that powers your Twitter feed or your WeChat messages today.
A lot of times when I was younger you know, people would say you know, this person didn’t get into this college or something and that’s the end of the road. I mean life is so different from that and so I think it’s important you know to keep your hopes, keep your dreams and try to follow them and you know I think, I think most of how life plays out is up to you. Up to what happens outside of you and I think it’s important to keep that in mind and take the long-term view.
I still vividly remember as a teenager jumping onto a crowded train at Chennai and traveling for 24 hours to attend my school at IT Kharagpur and that opportunity changed the course of my life.
You want to aim high enough that you fail you know, a few times. I think that’s the natural part of the process. You know Larry used to say:
“If you work on really difficult things, you’re better off because you have no competition. Others haven’t worked on that difficult a problem and even if you fail you end up doing something great in the process”
I think you know, working the real world I would say you know, it is important to be well-rounded. It’s important to you know, try different things you know, take some risks you know.
I encourage people you know, to follow their passions, a little bit more to follow set lanes throughout your career. Getting into an elite institution doesn’t guarantee success. It matters a lot but it doesn’t guarantee success and you know I think, I think it’s important to keep the perspective in life and you know, life is a long road and you know. You want to take it at the right traverse, and enjoy what you’re doing.
I know how much hard work it takes to pursue a dream of building a business. The long hours, time away from family, the ideas you know are brilliant that just don’t seem to catch on. I remember reading about that and thinking it’s the idea that matters. It didn’t matter where you come from or what your background is. One revolutionary idea, one brilliant invention can unleash other entrepreneurs to revolutionize industries in ways you could never predict.
Charina Silva is a full time project manager and a part time content editor.