I spent this week end in Ann Arbor Michigan attending a wedding.
Since I spent some of the most important years of my professional careers at University of Michigan (from 1982 to 1993) and was well rewarded by Michigan for my efforts, Ann Arbor has very good memories. I have many friends in town. During this trip due to being busy in the wedding, I did not get much time to spend meeting friends. I mostly could only meet friends that were part of the wedding and then went to meet Ishwar Sethi in Troy.
Ann Arbor is definitely one of the best collwge towns in USA, possibly in the world. The campus is beautiful, intellectual environment is obvious from book shops, coffee shops and other simple things like discussions in coffee ships. But Ann Arbor is definitaly not just an intellectual place. It has one of the best sports environment and attracts strong talents in arts and literature.
The only thing that is really missing in Ann Arbor is the entrepreneurial environment. It has such good professional schools, but it has not resulted in starting of as many companies as one would expect. My first comapny, Imageware, was started here and stayed here until it was acquired by SDRC in 1999. But there are very few examples of start-up companies. It is interesting to see how some places become a hot bed of entrepreneurial activities while others have difficulty envcouraging people to get into that. I was even surprised to see that in Atlanta, Georgia Tech was working hard to promote entrepreneurial activities, but it was not working as well as it should give their efforts. I am particularly thinking about it because in the coming term I am suppose to teach a course — Entrepreneurisn in Information Age.
By the way, wedding og Anu Jindal and Sejal Parikh (Anu is son of close friend Usha Jindal and Gopi Jiindal) was very enjoyable. I met many good friends and some people who may become good friends.