Putting Ideas into Actions
An Interview with Franco Salvetti
26 April 2016
Franco Salvetti, PhD, Principal Architect and among the creators of Microsoft Bing, reached us in one of his few trips to Italy from San Francisco where he chose to live in order to embrace the philosophy of “doing innovation.“ I spoke to him about the importance of developing ideas but more importantly about realizing them, also comparing Italy with Silicon Valley.
“When one wants to, things are done quickly”.
This is his philosophy of life. He left on August 5, 2002, after a superb aperitif at the Basso bar in Milan, and since then he came back to Italy just three times (the first time after 11 years). In 13 years he learned English, earned a PhD, worked for several innovation giants, and took part in two start-ups — both with exits — one of which was part of the rebrand of live.com which then became Bing.
He makes two considerations: one on the U.S. innovation system comparing it with the reality in Europe, noting that: “In Silicon Valley being a start-upper is not a profession because it’s not just a question of having an idea but rather putting it into practice and then developing products that will be purchased by big companies to do innovation. In Italy and also in Europe there is no lack of ideas, there is no lack of start-ups, on the other hand maybe there are too many, and there is no lack of money; what is lacking are the exits, the big companies that buy the start-up to progress the technology. That is the piece of system that would really make a difference.”
Salvetti then tells about the importance of the relationship between co-founders, which is essential to develop and bring forward the initial project; he also tells us about the value of work-space, that plays second fiddle to the relations between people.
More details in the video-interview!