In the late 1990s, as Silicon Valley’s tech industry headed into boom-land, so too did New York City.

A slew of startups formed, many focused on “new media,” or advertising on the Internet. I lived in the city for part of it, and it was a crazy time. Venture and corporate money flowed, and dot-com parties became a frequent occurrence in lower Manhattan, where many of the new media startups clustered. Somehow along the way, the moniker “Silicon Alley” was given to one of the densest urban areas in the U.S., where nary a computer chip firm was to be found.

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