June 8, 2005

The New Normal: No room for open source?

Author: Bernard Golden

I've always thought Roger McNamee -- stock analyst, venture capitalist, private equity investor. and guitar player for the Flying Other Brothers band -- was a very smart fellow. I remember seeing an interview with him in the late '90s when he observed that, over the previous 25 years, technology stocks had

grown from about 10 percent to 50 percent of the S&P 500 valuation. His message was that this reflected an enormous increase in technology's role in the economy -- but the high-growth story was over. The future of technology stocks would be much less rosy.

McNamee acted on his insight and sold off his technology holdings before the tech crash in early 2000. I, unfortunately, did not -- but that's a story for another day. McNamee has since moved on to applying LBO techniques to technology stocks via his Silver Lake Partners, which spun Seagate out of Veritas, recently made an offer to take SunGard Data Systems private, and has been rumored to be considering doing the same to Sun.

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