Big Business in the Other Valley


One of my very favorite things about having a business in Missoula is the way the business community connects.

Lately, I have been surrounding myself with businesses who are thinking big (and going big)… and it inspires me. The first time I went to Silicon Valley, I was so energized, and thought that I would never get that kind of energy here in Missoula. I was wrong.

We have a Valley of our own here. A valley of innovation, hard work and big ideas. And we have a valley that wants to work together. The Other Valley – you know, the one with no traffic.

I have a friend, Alex Philp, who has a business called Terraechos. Our businesses couldn’t be more different.

But, because I love to dork out on businesses, I have been learning a lot about what he does—at its most basic, he takes gigantic amounts of data and is able to analyze it as it moves along—rather than having to stop it, take a slice, and analyze.

The Garden City

There are about a zillion applications for this right now, as we are living in a complete tidal wave of information. What he does is coined Big Data, and it is big business and bigger opportunity.

But what I like about it the most is the idea that something overwhelming can be solved, seen, and used smartly.

I like this because I get overwhelmed.

And although much of what overwhelms me does not compute into a bianary system of any sorts, I like knowing that there are people and processes that might be able to tame the tidal wave. I can think of dreamy applications for such a concept—education—can you imagine?

But above all, I like that here in our Other Valley, there are big ideas, big thinkers, and big opportunities, for myself and for this pack of kids that runs around my house, brilliant and excited.

I want them to be able to keep that spark and see the opportunities that exist in the world, and here.


Check out more from one of Missoula’s FAVORITE Mamas About Town, Elke Govertsen. And check out Missoula Children and Nature NetworkActive Moms Missoula, and the Make it Missoula Business section.

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Mamalode's Elke Govertsen and her boysElke Govertsen is the publisher of Mamalode which is a magazine and website for area moms. When not juggling her family, business, and the laundry (disclosure – there is no laundry being done whatsoever), Elke tries to eek out time to write, do yoga, and read like a fiend.