IconRank: A Ranking Scheme For Iconic People In Silicon Valley

January 4, 2013 3:00 pm

The future of silicon valley, generally speaking, is shaped by the iconic people in technology. One heuristic to see the future of the industry is to track these people, and see what they are working on now. This is obviously not the greatest of techniques, but it generally works. Let us take a few examples – if you had tracked Jack Dorsey, you would have seen Square coming. If you had tracked Dennis Crowley, you would have known that Foursquare was going to be big. There are many more examples. In any case, ‘Hey, What Are They Up To Now’ gets very interesting for a set of folks, and not all of them are active on Twitter for us to just follow them and let our Twitter client do the rest.

There are some tools / workarounds that help us do this – Ark and its variants, LinkedIn based tools, and some Twitter based stuff (e.g. a list) but these are all workarounds, clearly not the solution. I guess what we are asking for, is like a Techmeme, but for Tech Icons, that bubbles up what the Tech Icons are up to, on a daily basis. The leaderboard must be auto-populated, based on some parameters, like a previous exit for example. And there could be leaderboards across domains, but that would be jumping the gun for now.

Do you know of any Website or Tool that does this? There would just be a handful of icons in any case, and they can easily be given an ‘iconrank’ based on previous success (it could be based on net worth, but that only works for maybe the top ten. Beyond that, the success- net worth correlation is very debatable.

Klout could probably be used as a model, and could very well be used as one of the many inputs to IconRank. The beauty of IconRank would be that it could be defined based on public information alone – much like Google’s PageRank. If you take away the thought that we are trying to rank people in some way, and read this as ‘Interesting People Do Interesting Things. How Do I Know What These Guys Are Up To Now?” – a ‘Techmeme for Tech Icons’ would appear more feasible. It could the first of many applications of IconRank.


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