About Heidi Hackford

Heidi Hackford is the content and curriculum director for the Exponential Center at the Computer History Museum. She is responsible for leading the development of educational materials focused on innovation and entrepreneurship. Heidi previously worked at Monticello, where she edited Thomas Jefferson’s family letters. At the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library, she established a digital archive and conducted teacher workshops on incorporating digital history resources in the classroom. After moving to Silicon Valley, Heidi directed the start-up of a new foundation promoting wilderness conservation through art.

Articles by Heidi Hackford(10)

Leading Man: Inspired Stories From a Silicon Valley Icon

Leading Man: Inspired Stories From a Silicon Valley Icon

 Oct 05, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
Storytelling can “engage the heart” and inspire people to follow your vision, according to John Hennessy, Alphabet chairman and former president of Stanford University. He and moderator Marissa Mayer, cofounder of Lumi Labs and former president and CEO of Yahoo, recently discussed some of the leadership stories and advice that Hennessy shares in his new book Leading Matters: Lessons From My Journey. Read More
Invested in China: Venture Capitalists on Growing Chinese Tech Companies

Invested in China: Venture Capitalists on Growing Chinese Tech Companies

 Aug 01, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
Remember when “Made in China” was synonymous with a cheap toy or electronic knockoff? Those days are long over. Chinese tech firms, once seen as quaint or copycats, can now count Alibaba, Tencent, and Ant Financial in the world’s top 10 most valuable internet companies, alongside Alphabet, Facebook, and Amazon. And the country’s tech economy is taking on, and beating, global rivals. Chinese founders are pushing the edge with new business models and disruptive innovations . . . and venture capitalists from both sides of the Pacific are shifting investments in a big way with important implications. Read More
Task Rabbits and Thunder Lizards: A Founder and Funder Story

Task Rabbits and Thunder Lizards: A Founder and Funder Story

 Jun 01, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
When a founder’s vision sparks a funder’s interest, an idea can become an enterprise with the potential to reimagine the whole idea of community. That’s what happened when TaskRabbit founder Leah Busque and Floodgate venture capitalist Ann Miura-Ko joined forces. The two discussed their partnership growing one of the earliest companies of the sharing economy during a panel produced by the Exponential Center at the Computer History Museum (CHM) on May 16, 2018. Read More
#WeToo: Insights from Silicon Valley Women in Tech

#WeToo: Insights from Silicon Valley Women in Tech

 Feb 28, 2018 Exponential Center
In 1962, Evelyn Berezin designed a reservation system for United Airlines that served 60 cities throughout the United States with a one-second response time. It had no central system failures in 11 years of operation. One of the largest systems built at that time, few people had the skills to design it, but Berezin was turned down for a subsequent job at the New York Stock Exchange because she might hear language on the trading floor that was “inappropriate for women.” Undeterred, she started her own computer company, Redactron, which quickly became a success. Evelyn Berezin was selected by the Computer History Museum (CHM) as a 2015 Fellow, honoring her early work in computer design and a lifetime of entrepreneurial activity. The Museum captured Berezin’s story in its freely accessible oral history collection and remains committed to ensuring that women are not only acknowledged for their contributions to computing and entrepreneurship past and present but also that their stories are shared. Read More
Silicon Valley: The Heart of the Untold Story

Silicon Valley: The Heart of the Untold Story

 Feb 13, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
Silicon Valley: The Untold Story, a new three-part documentary from award-winning Kikim Media airing on Discovery’s Science Channel in March 2018, reveals what has made Silicon Valley a hotbed of innovation and entrepreneurship for decades. As the community and educational outreach partner for the film, the Computer History Museum (CHM) hosted a premiere event with a panel discussion of Valley leaders featured in the movie: WhatsApp cofounder Jan Koum, technology entrepreneur Kim Polese, DFJ venture capitalist Heidi Roizen, and Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak. Journalist Michael S. Malone moderated the session, which was followed by a sneak preview of the first segment in the film series, “Secret Sauce.” Read More
Not Just for Calling Anymore: The Social Impact of the iPhone Revolution

Not Just for Calling Anymore: The Social Impact of the iPhone Revolution

 Jan 25, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
It will ruin your eyes, turn your brain to mush, and kids will see things they shouldn’t. The content is all just designed to sell stuff. It will destroy relationships—people won’t interact with family and friends in person anymore. What innovation prompted these dire predictions? The television when it came on the scene in the 1950s. And we’re raising the same questions and concerns about the smartphone today. New technologies tend to have that effect on people, who are hardwired to fear new things and worry about unintended consequences. They need time to learn how to understand and integrate new technologies into their daily lives. One of the most iconic smartphones—the iPhone—is only 10 years old. Humans are still learning to adapt to the new world it has brought. Read More
Making Trouble: Leslie Berlin Explores the People Who Built Silicon Valley

Making Trouble: Leslie Berlin Explores the People Who Built Silicon Valley

 Jan 05, 2018 CHM Live, Exponential Center
One of Silicon Valley’s great advantages, says author Leslie Berlin, is how accessible experienced founders and legendary CEOs are to the next generation of entrepreneurs. Steve Jobs counted David Packard of Hewlett-Packard and Robert Noyce of Intel among his mentors. Facebook’s young founder Mark Zuckerberg looked to Jobs for advice and also to Bob Taylor of Xerox PARC. Taylor is one of the seven pioneering individuals featured in Leslie Berlin’s book Troublemakers: Silicon Valley’s Coming of Age. Together, these “troublemakers” disrupted the world because they imagined a better future and were driven to help create it. Project historian for the Silicon Valley Archives at Stanford University, Berlin spoke about her book in a fireside chat at the Computer History Museum (CHM) with the Exponential Center’s Marguerite Gong Hancock on December 13, 2017. Read More
From Sailboats to Startups: Diane Greene’s Silicon Valley

From Sailboats to Startups: Diane Greene’s Silicon Valley

 Dec 15, 2017 CHM Live, Exponential Center
Diane Greene says her favorite experience ever was when, as a young woman, she windsurfed 15 miles from Molakai to Maui . . . alone. That confidence in her abilities and comfort with taking risks has served her well throughout her storied career as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, leading engineering teams and cofounding multiple startups. These include virtualization giant VMware, which she took to a $2 billion run rate over the course of 10 years. As CEO, Greene took the company public and oversaw its sale to EMC in 2003 for $635 million. Now she leads Google’s cloud enterprise, directing the growth and strategy of a major business partnering with customers like Snapchat, Disney, and eBay, and sits on the boards of Alphabet, Intuit, and MIT. In a July 2017 fireside chat with Exponential Executive Director Marguerite Gong Hancock at the Computer History Museum (CHM), Greene shared her experiences and insights. Read More
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