Silicon Valley is the part of the San Francisco Bay Area in California that is home to a large number of technology companies. Originally, this referred to primarily makers of silicon chips. Before that, the Bay Area had been used by both the government and private businesses as a place to research and develop technology, especially due to its proximity to Stanford University. Today, Silicon Valley is home to a large number of established technology firms - Apple Inc., Google, Adobe Systems, eBay, Hewlett Packard, Sun Microsystems and Yahoo! - as well as many startups in both the Web 2.0 space and other areas - green technology is one area that is currently growing. In addition, there are a large number of venture capital firms and other investors.