JimPinto.com - Connections for Growth & Success
No. 24 : November 17, 2000
A new-age newsletter, published irreverently and irregularly by Jim Pinto.
Business, marketing & futures commentary.
New attitudes, no platitudes.
- Fortune - Future of the Internet
- Old Models don't explain the new Economy
- Wearing a Computer Shirt
- Digital Cameras - Which one to buy?
- Monopoly Dotcom Edition
- Negroponte's Book : Being Digital
- Yesbutters and Whynotters
- eFeedback - Ending Wars
Fortune - Future of the Internet
Few dispute that we are now in the throes of a revolution the like of which
has happened only a few times in the past 10,000 years. Think of the things
that have produced a profound transformation in human society - movement
from the stone-age to metals; and then the emergence of new technologies -
the industrial age and then the information age. Railroads and then
airplanes made the world smaller. Computers extended intelligence and
microprocessors allowed that intelligence to be put almost anywhere.
Now, we have arrived in the Internet age - a network that allows people anywhere
on the planet to communicate as quickly and effortlessly as if they were in
the same office. And knowledge, found only by referring to large tomes in
imposing libraries, can be tapped instantly by anyone using a
The real spread of this new revolution is still to come. Fortune Magazine's
Future of the Internet - is a full issue devoted to this topic. It includes
an excellent introduction, with sections on business, finance,
entertainment and the impact of exploding communications bandwidth.
Spend some time on this significant Fortune presentation
Old models can't explain the new economy
The three largest segments - high-tech (semiconductors, computers, internet), telecommunications and health -
have soared since the 1970s to encompass 33 percent of US economic output
and growth will continue in this direction. While new economic forces are
"destroying" 43,000 jobs a month, the same forces are "producing" 136,000
new high-tech jobs every month. Old economic theories fail to explain the
new realities of the Information Age. The challenge lies in adjusting our
thinking to the new realities.
Michael Cox, the chief economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas was
in San Diego, CA. (my home town) recently at the Gartner Group
Semiconductors 2000 Conference. He presented a macroeconomic look at how
the microprocessor and related technologies continue to expand
productivity, while keeping unemployment at bay.
Read a summary of this thought-provoking speech
Today, about 8 million people telecommute full time in the United States, a
figure that's expected to grow to about 13.5 million within the next two
years. More robust networks and increased bandwidth, with a whole new
generation of software tools, are helping workers stay connected and still
be very productive at home. Wireless connectivity will allow more devices
to communicate with one another without cables and regardless of location.
Cell phones and personal digital assistants with bigger screens are making
it easier to do a lot of work - from anywhere. Why come into the office to
fill out your expense report, when you can do it right on your PDA as you
travel, and download it when you're web-connected? The ability to
telecommute provides significant advantages - and saving money - for
individuals and companies.
Take a look at this eWeek story on Telecommuting
Wearing a computer shirt
A new computerized shirt collects data from sensors built-in to the shirt's
grid, monitors environmental data, heart and breathing rate, ECG signals,
position etc. and routes the information to a remote computer to aid in
rapid medical diagnosis and response. The Sensatex shirt combines several
technologies: proprietary textiles, sensor measurement, data acquisition,
wireless communications. This provides a framework for biomedical
monitoring - but also perhaps (as this type of wearable computer becomes
more common) for many other interesting applications.
Take a look at the Sensatex shirt
Digital Cameras - which one to buy?
So, do you have a digital camera? Or, are you still using film, and going
(after you use the entire roll) to develop it at the 1-hour-photo place?
Actually, while I am on my fourth digital (a better one comes along every
couple of months) I still carry my clam-shell Olympus Stylus - it's small,
quick and effective and I don't have to mess around with my computer. And,
I scan the prints I like to send off to friends and relatives via email.
Hey, a good scanner costs about $90 these days....
What type of camera user are you? Do you need a digital camera? If you
would like some help to make your decision, check out PC Magazine's summary.
Review the the current crop of digitals
Monopoly - dotcom edition
In days gone by, as I traveled the world, I collected Monopoly boards from
different countries, in different languages with different currencies.
It's interesting to play with Indian Rupees to buy Byculla and Bandra in
Bombay; and to pay francs for the Eiffel Tower and The Louvre. Of course,
Jail is still Jail in any country - and you still have to pay to get out
immediately, or rot in there for three turns.
Now, the dotcom edition of Monopoly is available. As you travel the board,
you'll buy and sell today's hottest Websites to build your personal empire
of virtual real estate. You're after the top Net companies - the portals,
search engines, news, information, entertainment, shopping, business, ISP
and connectivity providers that are now household names. You can own Yahoo,
Amazon, eBay or Nokia - and all the other majors. Which properties replace
Park Place and Boardwalk?
Go take a look at the Dotcom Monopoly board
While driving to Los Angeles recently, I took along an audio tape from my
collection : "Being Digital" by Nicholas Negroponte. I was amazed at how
many of the ideas that Negroponte expressed about 5 or 6 years ago are even
more applicable today!
The book is an edited version of the 18 articles that Negroponte, the
founder of MIT's Media Lab, wrote for Wired magazine. He describes the
evolution of CD-ROMs, multimedia, hypermedia, HDTV (high-definition
television) and more. The section on interfaces is informative, offering an
up-to-date history on visual interfaces, graphics, virtual reality (VR),
holograms, teleconferencing hardware, the mouse and touch-sensitive
interfaces, and speech recognition. In the last chapter and the epilogue,
Negroponte offers visionary insight on what "being digital" means for our
future. Overall, this book provides an informative history of the rise of
technology and some interesting predictions for its future.
You can read most of the book online
Follow this link to Amazon.com, to get the book or the audio tape :
Rob Henley of Action Instruments gave me this today :
The next time youíre in a meeting, look around and identify the yesbutters,
the notnowers and the whynotters.
Yesbutters have all the answers - the wrong answers.
Yesbutters don't just kill ideas, they kill companies, even entire industries.
- Yesbut, we're different.
- Yesbut, we can't afford it.
- Yesbut, our business doesn't need it.
- Yesbut, we couldn't sell it to our work force.
- Yesbut, we can't explain it to the shareholders.
- Yesbut, letís wait and see.
Whynotters move companies !
They dare to dream. And to act.
By acting, they achieve what others see as unachievable.
Why not, indeed?
I had several interesting comments regarding the item in my last eNews (No.
23 - November 9, 2000) "Ending Ward - A Trend Analysis".
My brother, Jude Pinto [Jupin@bom2.vsnl.net.in] an economist and research
analyst from Bombay, India, provided a different perspective :
" Will war go away? Are developing countries graying? As long as there's poverty,
there will be overpopulation, and incentive for war. In any case, do wars
need lots of people now? With software, bigger wars can be fought with less
people. Yes, the mix of wars is changing. Perhaps more of them could be
fought over the Internet."
Lou Heavner [Lou.Heavner@frco.com] e-wrote:
"Your comments on the end of
war were interesting and scary. I believe the best way to reduce
oppression is to encourage trade with oppressed countries. What destroyed
communist USSR as much as anything was the increasing difficulty of the
government to fool the people that they were as well or better off than
people in the free west. "
John Carrigg [firstname.lastname@example.org] e-commented:
"Global Governance? In some hybrid advisory form perhaps, but I can't see nation-states giving
over their sovereignty to insulated global bureaucrats. It's hard enough
to get our federal bureaucrats to be responsive. Can you imagine how
responsive the global regulators would be? Also, there would be inexorable
pressure to shift wealth from the have nations to the have-nots. The more
prosperous nations have typically accumulated wealth because they created
it with their sweat and ingenuity. I don't think they'll be a willing
partner is such a transfer."
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