Speaking the Same Language

The Tower of BabelEvery industry has its own language. In most cases, if your comfort zone happens to be outside the space identified by that profession, you may find yourself empathizing with mono-linguistic tourists in a foreign country.

Such is the case for those not firmly entrenched in the high-tech industry. Recently, the San Jose Mercury News ran an article titled, “Silicon Valley Tech Companies Struggle to Describe Themselves in Comprehensible Language” in which it used Silver Peak as an example of how Silicon Valley companies seem to have their own language that is indecipherable to those outside of their individual niche of the lexicon.

The Merc’s Patrick May cites a recent post from this blog in which we describe ourselves thusly: “Silver Peak is the leader in data center class WAN optimization and is recognized as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for WAN optimization controllers.”

Apparently, May feels the description of ourselves is much like the “ineffable effable…Effanineffable…Deep and inscrutable singular Name” in T.S. Eliot’s “The Naming of Cats” for he goes on to say:

“From unintelligible corporate mission statements and tech-job postings to incomprehensible billboards on Highway 101 that speak only to that small handful of geeks over in the slow lane, Silicon Valley is drowning in a linguistic riptide of seamless design functionality, end-to-end services and scalability truly without precedent.”

Having made a career in technology and a home in the Bay Area for many years, I can assure you there are more than a few of us geeks on Highway 101 at any given moment and, incidentally, you will never see my car in the slow lane.

A Need-to-Know Basis

Yes, we don’t deny that what Silver Peak manufactures does not resonate with the general public, but, of course, the general public is not our target market. For CIOs and IT managers who are in need of optimizing their global networks, our description is readily understood and very much in demand. For others, a description of what we do is perhaps not as important as what we are—one of the fastest-growing networking companies in the Valley.

Mr. May chose three of Silicon Valley’s giants as examples of clearly understandable missions saying “Google’s (GOOG) easy. It helps you find stuff. Facebook — duh — lets you connect with friends. Even Intel is (INTC) a no-brainer — they make those little pieces of whatever inside your computer” (the geek in me feels compelled to point out “those little pieces of whatever” are actually little pieces of silicon, the Valley’s namesake, and are called microprocessors).

How ironic that all three of those companies are Silver Peak customers! That’s right, all three of those companies who are clear leaders in their respective fields and household names use Silver Peak to make their businesses more efficient, more competitive, and more profitable. We are happy to be part of the rich and dynamic Silicon Valley ecosystem.

There are many (unapologetically geeky) businesses like ours in Silicon Valley that supply critical technology enabling our customers to ultimately deliver goods and services that actually make sense to all geeks and nongeeks alike all over the world. If you think we speak to you, visit us at www.silver-peak.com. We’lll happily speak geek!

About the author
Rick Tinsley