A former member of my team at Intel and now a close friend, visited with us this weekend. We talk about my recent post regarding Facebook. I explained in detail why I think Facebook is more valuable now than it will be in two years (see Facebook: Take the money and run). My friends, used Microsoft as an example of a company that did not have the best technology but still succeeded. He also cited Google. I thought they were poor examples and for many of the same reasons. There was a term that was popular in the early 2000s. It was “Built to last“. There was a book by this title. The idea was that some companies were built to last such as IBM, GM etc. while other companies were built to go public or to be acquired. Microsoft was built to last. Intel was built to last. Apple was built to last. Cisco was built to last. Google was the last major technology company that was built to last I think. Facebook was not built to last. Companies like Intel and Microsoft built their products from the ground up. But now more and more companies are able to create a company (notice I did not say “business”) with a thin veneer of technology. I actually think this is wonderful as long as the executives and boards of these companies are not confused by what they are doing. I think of companies like Facebook, Twitter, etc as media properties. They are probably like a really great TV series that has a 3-8 year run. And speaking of “run”. I say “take the money run”.