Silicon Valley makes money, but is it good TV?

Startup U cast
The cast of Startup U, a reality show on ABC Family about aspiring entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley.

Watching engineers sit quietly in front a computer and code does not sound like riveting television. But Hollywood thinks Silicon Valley startups have enough outsized personalities and dramatic tension to make good TV.

A new crop of reality shows will try and turn Silicon Valley's entrepreneurs and venture capitalists into ratings. They join the successful "Shark Tank" and some already forgotten failures.

SyFy's "The Bazillion Dollar Club" profiles companies going through accelerators 500 Startups and Highway1. The 12-week programs help aspiring entrepreneurs polish their ideas with seed funding and coaching. The six-episode show, starting September 22, will feature 500 Startups founder and venture capitalist Dave McClure, a colorful fixture in Silicon Valley.

The ABC Family reality show "Startup U" turns the camera on students at an unaccredited Silicon Valley school led by venture capitalist Tim Draper. The show, which premiered earlier this month, puts 10 entrepreneurs through an eccentric program that includes wilderness training and jumping into a pool fully dressed, for some reason. At the end of the course, students will pitch their ideas to real venture capitalists.

On Tuesday, Intel (INTC) announced it was teaming up with Mark Burnett and Turner (CNNMoney's parent company) for "America's Greatest Makers." That show will document inventors as they race to take their hardware ideas from vision to a marketable product. The winner gets $1 million to invest in their business.

Related: 15 startups. One Silicon Valley bed and breakfast.

There are other potential shows, but it's unclear if they will ever come to fruition. Earlier this year, anonymous producers of a show called "94110" posted a casting call on Craigslist and lampposts in the Bay Area. They were looking for "leading technology executives living, learning, and loving together in San Francisco's Mission District." (Desired characters included a "bro" and an awkward engineer who "likes punk rock, [is] addicted to vaping."

In April, an ill-conceived casting for "Girlfriends of Silicon Valley" asked for "women with big social lives and even bigger personalities" who were married to or dating tech workers.

Hollywood has tapped Silicon Valley for reality TV before, with mixed results.

"Start-Ups: Silicon Valley," was Bravo's dramatized take on the "glamorous" world of entrepreneurs. The show was poorly reviewed and widely mocked by real founders -- and anyone who happened to flip by Bravo while it was on. It was wisely canceled in 2012 after eight episodes.

ABC's Shark Tank, which starts its seventh season on September 25, has succeeded by focusing on startup ideas and framing it as a competition, cutting out much of the manufactured behind-the-scenes drama.

But so far, no reality show has been as close to real life (or as entertaining) as HBO's "Silicon Valley."

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