If your industry hasn't been disrupted by Google yet, observed the New Yorker writer Ken Auletta in his 2010 book Googled, it will be soon. Two recent books look at the next stage of those disruptions — one academic, one popular.
ZDNet UK Book Reviews
Essential reading for technophiles
Whenever possible, learn from other people's failures — it's cheaper than learning from your own. Eric Ries didn't have this advantage when, as a Yale undergraduate, he co-founded Catalyst Recruiting.
"Love makes the odds irrelevant," writes Lawrence Lessig at the end of Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress — and a Plan to Stop It. "It is a commitment to doing whatever can be done — sometimes destructively so — to beat the odds and save the soul who taught you that love.
In 1996 I reviewed three books for New Scientist about the same 1995 events: the chase (through cyberspace and the physical United States) after and capture of Kevin Mitnick. Who's that, you say?
"I came for the crack," a woman once said to me reproachfully at a party. She was miffed that I and the third person in the conversation had embarked on an impassioned discussion of…cryptography.
What's it like to work at Microsoft? Better still, what do the people who write software at Microsoft actually do?
You probably have an old family photo album with pictures of relatives you may or may not recognise. Perhaps you inherited knickknacks or heirlooms, holiday souvenirs, or bundles of old love letters.
The experience is the thing. Joseph Pine has this story he likes telling, and uses to open Infinite Possibility: Creating Customer Value on the Digital Frontier.
"All progress depends on the unreasonable man," George Bernard Shaw wrote in 'Maxims for Revolutionists', part of the preface to his play Man and Superman. No-one who's read anything about Steve Jobs over the last 40 years is likely to need Walter Isaacson's 600-plus pages to convince them that Steve Jobs was a very unreasonable man.
A few months ago, Autonomy founder and CEO Mike Lynch sold his company to HP for £7.1 billion.
In The Revolution Will Be Digitised, Heather Brooke criticises Julian Assange for allowing himself and Wikileaks to become the media story rather than the materials Wikileaks uncovered and published.
Ever since about 1995, when Nicholas Negroponte, then head of the MIT Media Lab, began talking about The Daily Me, a newspaper that would be built entirely of articles that interested you, the internet's potential to become an echo chamber has been obvious. In The Filter Bubble Eli Pariser — echoing a growing cry among those old enough to remember the early days — says this is not what the internet pioneers promised.
To my mother, there were two kinds of people: blood relatives and strangers. It's hard to imagine what she would have made of today's genetic testing, which shows, among other things, the complex and convoluted ways an African-American may be descended from a white Scot, and that all the many Cohens in the world may be related.
Location, location, location: it's not just for estate agents any more. As smartphones take a larger share of both the phone and the computing market, where we are (or where we want to be) becomes ever more important.
The investigative reporter Heather Brooke could not have known when she corrected the galleys for The Revolution Will Be Digitised: Dispatches from the Information War that the week it was released the former partnership of Julian Assange and the The Guardian would implode in a burst of headlines.
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- 2 CitizenFour, film review: The Snowden revelations, as they happened
- 3 Technocreep, book review: The erosion of privacy in a connected world
- 4 Big Data, Data Mining, and Machine Learning, book review: A sound but traditional approach
- 5 Flash Boys, book review: Exposing the Wall Street shuffle