When I say “the F.R.I.E.N.D.S” of geeks, I am talking about the HBO TV series “Silicon Valley”. Being a very diehard fan of the show F.R.I.E.N.D.S, I am well aware of its popularity among people of all ages. Hence the comparison I make is not baseless. Being a person closely related to computers and coding, I consider myself capable of making such a drastic comparison (as it may seem too few).
The ‘F.R.I.E.N.D.S’ Of Geeks!
I in the beginning, just like most of you thought ‘A show about computers and geeks? Isn’t my life already the epitome of boredom?!’ Little did I know I would have to eat those words later? Nonetheless, I watched it (as it was highly recommended by a friend who threatened to sever ties with me if I didn’t do it) and I enjoyed it immensely! More than I have in a lot of series that I have been seeing those days. Believe me when I say it, I was hooked! Watched the whole 2 seasons in two days!
For those who are wondering about the name, Silicon Valley is a nickname for the southern portion of the San Francisco Bay Area, which is located in the part of the U.S. state of California known as Northern California. It is home to many of the world’s largest high-tech corporations, as well as thousands of tech startup companies. The word “valley” refers to the Santa Clara Valley where the region has traditionally been centered, which includes the city of San Jose and surrounding cities and towns.
The word “silicon” originally referred to the large number of silicon chip innovators and manufacturers in the region. The term “Silicon Valley” eventually came to refer to all high tech businesses in the area, and is now generally used as a metonym for the American high-technology economic sector.
This interesting show with the tagline “Where everyone wants to be an icon” (pun intended, off course) is of the comedy genre and does fair justice to it. It’s hard to stop watching it as it continually gives a mini heart attacks! (I must stop before I give any spoilers to the potential viewership). One thing must be pointed out here, I can say it with utmost surety that everyone, be if people related to the computing world or those who have never even given a second thought as to how a computer actually works, will enjoy this one equally because of its strong story and a comprehensive binding of technical term usage and the struggle of an introvert boy genius and his pals. I assure you, you all will feel a part of it.
Added bonus off course, to the geeks, as you will actually know most of the things being discussed and the value of birthing your invention from scratch by strenuous brain activity (For your eyes only, oh geeks out there) I will provide a quick synopsis for the show. Richard Hendricks (Thomas Middleditch) is a shy, reclusive programmer who works at a large internet company called Hooli. He is also developing a music app called Pied Piper in a live-in startup business incubator run by entrepreneur Erlich Bachman (T. J. Miller). After a rocky post-TED elevator pitch of Pied Piper to venture capitalist Peter Gregory (Christopher Evan Welch), Hendricks also shows his work to a pair of programmers at Hooli who mock him. Within hours, however, Hooli executive Donald “Jared” Dunn (Zach Woods) and Gregory’s assistant Monica (Amanda Crew) discover that the app contains a revolutionary data compression algorithm. Hooli CEO Gavin Belson (Matt Ross) proposes a US$4 million buy-out of Pied Piper, while Peter Gregory offers a $200,000 investment for 5% ownership in the company, an offer that would result in an equivalent valuation for the company.
1. Richard Hendricks (Thomas Middleditch)
2. Erlich Bachman (T.J. Miller)
3. Peter Gregory (Christopher Evan Welch)
4. Donald "Jared" Dunn (Zach Woods)
5. Monica (Amanda Crew)
6. Gavin Belson (Matt Ross)
This leads Belson to increase his offer to $10 million. With encouragement from Monica and the support of Bachman, Hendricks chooses Gregory’s offer. If you don’t get half of that don’t be alarmed or troubled. Once you start watching it you will, it will not only entertain you with subtle humor but also acquaint you with the pressures and challenges of a startup business and will get you high on adrenaline. After all, who doesn’t enjoy success stories? Am I right?
The series premiered on April 6, 2014, on HBO. The first season consisted of eight episodes. HBO renewed the series for a second season which premiered on April 12, 2015. The third season comes out in April 2016. You should definitely give this show a chance, you will find the friendships very F.R.I.E.N.D.S-ish but in a very I-do-not-feel-I’m-a-programmer sort of way! But I tell you the emotion is there! Happy watching!