Alexis Madrigal, senior editor at The Atlantic
, has been writing about "Rust Belt" startups as part of an ongoing series called "Startup Nation."
In a feature titled, "A Space to Be an Entrepreneur and Not Feel Like You Have Leprosy Here in Cleveland," he writes about Shaker LaunchHouse
, where an abandoned car dealership has been transformed into a "lively space for Cleveland's nerds and entrepreneurs alike."
"Run by native Clevelander Dar Caldwell, LaunchHouse takes a bunch of the weird and geeky things going on in the Bay and compresses them into one glorious space filled with entrepreneurs, developers, designers, and (I use this word lovingly) nerds," Madrigal writes.
Writing about some of the more eccentric "tenants," he notes, "I'm not sure I could explain to an economic development officer or even some venture capitalists why these guys are so important in the formation of new companies, why you need them drinking beer with the entrepreneurs, or why their love for the sheer thingness of things is so exhilarating. But I'll put it like this: these guys are the wizards, even if they aren't the kings or the knights. They're the soul of a tech scene, even if they may never sign a term sheet, trademark a name, or raise seed capital. And where they are, there is magic."
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