Google, Makani, and the kite surfing-industrial complex at Moffett Field How did wind energy startup Makani Power garner $10 million in investment from Google and space at the NASA-run Ames research center on Moffett Field ? Through at least one convenient marriage and a shared passion for kite surfing, a tipster points out:

Nice to see NASA was able to find room at Moffett Field for Makani Power, the startup headed by kite-surfing dudes Saul Griffith (Tim O'Reilly's son-in-law) and Don "Father of Kite Surfing" Montague, which received $10M bucks from, the foundation headed by kite-surfing dudes Larry Page & Sergey Brin.
So to recap, the Valley is a meritocracy, and there's money for anyone with a good idea. Assuming "anyone" means "marrying into the local entrepreneurial aristocracy" and "merit" means "can totally shred at kite surfing ."