Gonna go with the idea that the long tail is really quite long and invisible here.
I imagine github as an iceburg. Sure, I see things like bootstrap with XXXk followers and jquery on there. Big projects! Big names! Big! Big! Big!
But what about what I don't see? How many thousands of users have private accounts? How many thousands of businesses have private github repos? I don't really know. It's a smart bet that every time somebody sees all the prestige of the big name projects, they think "Hmmm, this is really working for them; Could it work so well for me/my project/my startup/ my enterprise? I hope I can make this private."
I am just saying, sure there is a lot of shovel selling going on. But just because you can't see others digging, doesn't mean they aren't out there.
I think there's a pretty straight-forward reason for this. If you've worked as a software developer for 10 years, you know what business domain you know really well? Software development. That makes it a natural place to start in looking for ideas to build a business.
The companies that regularly get covered on hackernews, techcrunch, etc. are not the sum total of technology companies in the valley or in the world. I work at one of those companies that doesn't get covered by tech crunch and it's phenomenal. The vast majority of my coworkers have some sort of prior experience at big name firms. One colleague just paid for his sons college education and mortgage from his time at Splunk. We do exist.
Yes, they basically don't say what they're going to spend the money on.
But it may have been (they hint at this) that they didn't need or want the funding so much as to have AH invested in the company. Taking their investment may create something of a partnership and gives them access to AH's advice/rolodex and encourages future support. It also gives them a concrete valuation to cite down the road.
Lame. GitHub should have written that they were using Andreessen Horowitz for their money. Without the $100MM would they have written that post, say, if Andreessen was joining their board? Fact is, they're fawning.
The following isn't meant to harm or critizise anyone, but isn't such kind of outside investment more about changing your now worthy company stack against some more handy dollar notes? If a company just needs cash for profitable ideas they could get a loan, right? So if that's the case why would people say differently in their blog?