Millennium Bug. It is also called Y2K, the Year 2000 Issue. This bug matters to our video and Bangalore today because there are two more things along with this bug which we will discuss later due to which, Bangalore, in Karnataka’s economy contributes more than 43% alone.
Bangalore contributes to more than 95% in Karnataka, and more than 35% share in software exports in India. We will also talk about an individual who dreamed of making Bangalore India’s Silicon Valley. He fought alone for this and won too.
From the first three months of 2022 50% of all the funding went to Bangalore startups. Whatever Bangalore is today, the credit goes to three things.
Three Things that made Bangalore Silicon Valley of India
What is this bug, and how did Bangalore benefit from it?
In 1993, a magazine named Computer World wrote the article ‘Dooms Day 2000’ and mentioned the Y2k bug. The bug was related to the computer’s date. All the computers operated on codes written in the 1960s. Storage was very expensive back then.
1KB disc space, which costs nothing today, used to cost more than ₹7,500 back then. So the software engineers tried something to save this storage. So they started to write 4-digit years as 2-digit years.
Such as 1967 was 67 and 1985 was 85 etc. The issue was that when the 2000s come, the computer will not store the last two digits that is double zero.
The question was, how will the computers read it? Will they read it as 2000 or 1900 or 1800? This was a big question because banks calculate interest rates on the basis of dates.
Transports book tickets on the basis of dates and many other industries could crash due to this problem. You might think, what’s the big deal? Turn the 2-digits into 4-digits.
But these codes were written in the 1960s using the Common Business Oriented Language (COBOL).
By the 1990s, this language had become outdated. So many software engineers didn’t know the language. But this is where Bangalore comes into the picture.
Many people used to say that India is 20-30 years behind the US and now say it’s 4-5 years behind them. Yes, we are behind but Bangalore benefitted from this.
During the 1990s, COBOL was outdated in the US but in India, particularly in Bangalore, it was quite popular. Many software engineers were learning the language.
The Bangalore software companies knew that if this problem is solved outside, it would cost billions. There’s cheap manpower here, the capability to solve the problem and engineers who can learn COBOL.
We will solve this problem for you. That is where Bangalore got its boost to be an IT Hub.
The export was so high that India’s IT sector contributed 1.2% to the GDP After solving the problem, the figure jumped to 7.7%.
You may ask, why Bangalore? There were other metro cities apart from Bangalore, so why didn’t they develop in the IT sector? For this, we will have to go to 1953 when Bangalore became Bangalore.
Hindustan Machine Tools (HMT)
That was the year when the Indian Govt established Hindustan Machine Tools (HMT) in Bangalore.
You might say that this one company, that doesn’t even sound related to the IT sector how does it concern all this? After HMT was set up in Bangalore a lot of heavy industries grew there.
The characteristics of heavy industries are that they use industry-complex technologies.
After heavy industries, DRDO set up labs here, the Aeronautical Development establishment was set up in 1959.
So whether its heavy industry’s industry-complex technology or the Indian Military’s aviation technology everybody needed integration technologies.To fulfil this, the electronic and computer sector, in Bangalore grew a lot.
You can call this a blessing in disguise because after the India-China war in 1962, heavy industries had the pressure of supplying, manufacturing and assembling, The need was to increase the heavy industry’s productive capacity.
This needed development in innovation and integration technologies. Bangalore was quite ahead in Science They had the Indian Institute of Science which is one of the most innovative institutions in the Asia Pacific Region.
In 1909, with the help of Jamshedji Tata’s endowment fund the Indian Institute of Science was established.IT companies here are helping businesses with IT development.Many startups are solving our daily life problems. Such as food delivery, shopping, investing etc.
Ram Krishna Baliga
To make Bangalore what it is this was not enough. Someone dreamed of making Bangalore India’s Silicon Valley. His name was Ram Krishna Baliga.
He was the Deputy General Manager of Bharat Electronic Limited’s Radar Divison. But he was alone on this journey.
He needed some support. As shown in the Dream11 Ad, when dreams are big, nobody’s alone.
That is what happened with Ram Krishna Baliga. The then Karnataka CM, Devraj Urs understood his vision and supported him.
In 1997, he was made the Chairman of the Karnataka State Electronics Development Corporation.
In 1978, Ram Krishna Baliga planned to make the electronic city. He purchased 332 acres of land in Anekal Taluk. which became India’s first electronic or IT Industry park. Companies started to set up here in the 1980s.
Many people think Bangalore grew because of Infosys but Infosys actually entered quite late. In 1983 when Infosys moved its Head Office from Pune to Bangalore it was a small company. Infosys has played a vital role in Bangalore’s IT development.
Bangalore received international recognition when Texas Instruments was set up there in 1985. Though they didn’t set up in the electronic city instead, they went to millers road.
The Indian Govt understood the importance of the IT sector. They introduced the Computer policy in 1984, the Electronic Policy in 1985 and the software policy in 1986. So the IT sector could grow further.
When the Y2k came due to all those reasons Bangalore was ready to grab the opportunity while no other metro city was ready. So due to all these efforts Bangalore became India’s silicon valley but a hurdle was created as well.
It was the Infrastructure. The Commissioner of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palika Gaurav Gupta said in one of his interviews that between 2010 and 2020 more than 50 lakh people have moved to Bangalore.
This put a lot of pressure on Bangalore’s infrastructure. The plan made for the city ten years ago is being implemented now.
That means Bangalore’s infrastructure is 10 years behind Bangalore. If you live in Bangalore, you can relate to this. Despite all of this, Bangalore is the back office and R&D Hotspot for the world. Ramkrishna Baliga, the father of the electronic city.
There are more than 120 companies in the electronic city. It includes companies like Infosys, TCS and 3M.
Today the area covers more than 800 acres. There are 67,000 companies registered in Bangalore and they employ more than 15 lakh people. You can see in this graph that Bangalore has 1,55,000 R&D talent, which is 4 times higher than Pune.
In the 2021 startup funding matter Bangalore raised ₹3.9 lakh crores. Which is higher than Beijing and Shanghai.
In the first quarter of 2022, out of all the startup funding in India, more than 50% has been raised by a Bangalore-based startup.
Bangalore is India’s biggest IT Hub but if we compare it to global cities then there’s still a long way to go. Their infrastructure has to strengthen for support.