Re: A Zombie concept?
In theory yes, in practice no.
I can hire developers anywhere in the world, but I have to find them. How do I know that somebody in ToadSuck Ak is any good? Unless they are the inventor of Python/Ruby/etc then I am comparing them to somebody in India charging $1/hour on Elancer. By coming to work in the valley they have proven to me they are good because they were hired by %BIG NAME%, or simply have proved that they can earn enough to pay rent here.
Similarly the person in ToadSuck Ak who wants to be paid $100/hour can do that by coming to the valley, or by inventing their own language and hope it becomes wildly popular 10years later.
Once they have a reputation they can move back to ToadSuck and get $250/hour rates because everyone knows them.
I can (and do) have lawyers, patent agents, accountants completely online. They are a commodity, all accountants are equally good-enough, or I can judge how good they are easily.
But I need to raise money - so I have to meet VCs - the VCs are here. I could fly to SF every week to see them but at some point they are going to want to meet the team, see a prototype, get "a feel for the company". This is difficult to do if I have to fly a bunch of consultants in from around the world who have themselves never met before - to instantly bond in a motel conference room.