The recent resolution by the Federal Court of San Jose in California in the case of Elizabeth Holmes and her plasticine unicorn named Theranos has created a huge resonance in these times for being sensitive to innovation in health.
San Jose is one of the most important epicenters of Silicon Valley. Although hippie mysticism and other alternative cultural elements invading the modern world come from that region, its technological influence is undeniable. And not to mention the huge financial importance it has for the digital transformation of the planet.
Sure, neither the transistor nor the microchip were invented in Silicon Valley, but that abstract environment that implies technological innovation is and will be coming — in a classic way — from that region of the planet, too.
Although magic creates enormous confusion, neither in science nor in technological entrepreneurship magic simply does not exist. Elizabeth Holmes sold the idea that she was to present to the world a machine capable of performing multiple molecular diagnoses from a minimal blood sample, making it possible to do away with the very expensive and time-consuming laboratory analysis procedures. And he presented it as if it were a work of magic.
Over the years, Elizabeth’s little machine was never capable of to resemble, but conversely, if he succeeds To vanish Almost magically debunked billions of dollars and a criminally popular myth: You don’t need to go to college to try tech.
It is true that more and more “patrol” business schools will appear (like those caricatured in the 80s of the last century) that promise to develop exceptional skills in software, hardware and mechatronics development in just 3 months.
I have no doubt that these graduates can download, copy and paste pieces of code with certain speed and accuracy and that after a few years they will become the modern maquiladors of information technology and 3D printing, and I find this There is also no doubt that ultimately the most curious will be being able to effectively create some great solutions.
After all, practice makes perfect. But the Theranos case turned out to be a popular saying “You can fool a lot of people for a short time or a few people for a long time, but you can’t fool everyone all the time” And as they well point out in Nature (January 4, 2022), it is necessary to have scientific evidence to support expectations and, above all, to be able to correct (pivot) the path in time.
Holmes used his lack of transparency that Theranos was a startup as a defense shield. Ironically, at the heart of Silicon Valley, Prof. Steve Blank rightly popularized several theories over the past 20 years that could have helped him to read to avoid being found guilty.
The first is fundamental and says “A startup is a temporary organization designed to seek repeatable business models”, Also in his manifesto, among other things he says “Confirm your hypothesis with experiments” and some very relevant “Failures are an integral part of business model discovery”, And investors should take into account all stages of the Investment Relevance Classification (Investment Readiness Level) specifically #9 which says “Verify the metrics that matter.”
will continue to appear “My Grandmother’s Jam Enterprise” But to carry out technology-based ventures, you need data, analyzing it, reviewing papers, patenting and studying hard. And more each time.