Crossroads

At the intersection of technology, finance and the Pacific Rim.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Recommended Reading

I spent the weekend reading a couple of books. As I noted in class, I am not that prolific a reader of business books (especially by consultants), but these two were very good within the context of what we are studying. After you spend time in IT you get the feeling that the more things change the more they stay the same--patterns repeat. But this is dangerous thinking and these days there is a definite feel that the dinosaurs are sniffing the air and sensing that something is different this time--that we are headed toward a new something--akin to when the PC revolutionalized the office worker. These books provide clues of where the direction could be. Both books are both well-kinown, recently published and much discussed in Silicon Valley and elsewhere.

The first was The Search by John Battelle. He runs an excellent blog on the search industry and its impact on media at http://battellemedia.com/ and is the former editor of Wired. You may not have time to read the whole of it, but suggest you take a look at Chapter 7 and 10--these provide clues of where we are headed. The second is the Long Tail by Chris Anderson, also of Wired. We will be reading his views later in the course about how cheap storage and systems, plus IP networks, plus search are creating niche markets and disrupting incumbents.

I will leave my copies of the book at the front desk of the library if you would like to read and review. Please return them promptly--am going to ask that check-out be overnight only.

Lastly, David Pogue of the NYT has an interesting review of a little company's effort in Redmond, Washington to fight back against the Google threat. We will look at it at the end of the class tomorrow.

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