JimPinto.com - Connections for Growth & Success™
No. 22 : November 2, 2000

JimPinto.com eNews is a new-age newsletter, published irreverently and irregularly by Jim Pinto.

Business, marketing & futures commentary. New attitudes and no platitudes. We tell it like we see it. Stay e-tuned....


  • Peer-to-peer computing - Napster's Legacy
  • MicroElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS)
  • Kurzweil's Future Forecast
  • George Gilder's new book: Telecosm
  • Evolution of the TechnoHuman
  • Fertility Time
  • eFeedback
    • Honeywell Turmoil
    • Morley Clarifies Modicon & Bedford Connections
    • Computers in the Attic

Peer-to-peer Computing

The decision by Napster (the start-up that started on-line computer sharing) to partner with Bertelsmann, seems like the best bet for a company plagued by record industry lawsuits and anxious to legitimize its business model. But, Napster's concept may be an idea whose time has come - it could change the basic way that we work as more and more people go to file and resource sharing on the web.

Read the UPSIDE magazine article on the new relationship between Napster and Bertelsmann, and how it affects the music industry.

Click Upside story on Napster & Bertelsmann

But, Napster is not dead! Its legacy is peer-to-peer (P2P) computing, which is essentially what the Internet means, and what will become reality as more people work and interact on the web. Why not allow your Customers to share files (information) that would make them your partner? Why not allow your friend's computer (that happens to be idle right now, as your friend sleeps, to provide you with additional processing power? Why not join several computers, working together, to solve problems that would previously take a massive main-frame or super-computer? Welcome to the future of internet computing!

This is what Dick Morley and others have been preaching at the Chaos Conferences at Santa Fe. Complexity Science will bring about a revolution, as P2P becomes not only popular, but the way to work.

Click Useful ZDNET article with several good hot links

Micro Electro Mechanical Systems - MEMS

In recent eNews, I have been discussing Nanotechnology - a significant technology revolution that is still in the experimental stage. Some eNews friends have mentioned products that are already available with a new technology that is yielding significant results today - MEMS, MicroElectroMechanicalSystems or micromachining.

MEMS is clearly the next step in integrated circuits, the revolution that allowed millions of transistors to be "grown" on one "chip". MEMS is a relatively new technology which utilizes silicon to create complex mechanical systems (machines) with micron geometry. MEMS can have many functions, including sensors (measuring physical variables) and actuators (causing movement). And, of course, on the same chip, in similar geometry, one can build processing power and memory, giving the MEMS "intelligence". As this new technology comes into play, there are thousands of applications in commercial and defense systems. Recent studies have estimated the market for intelligent micromachines to be around $100 Billion/year.

Click Sandia Labs Intelligent Micromachine Initiative

Click Excellent tutorial on MEMS

Kurzweil's Future Forecast

Ray Kurzweil, (raymond@kurzweiltech.com) author of the book: "The Age of Spiritual Machines - When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence" has been a seminal influence on my own thinking. Ray was the principal developer of the first omni-font optical character recognition device, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first CCD flatbed scanner, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the sounds of the grand piano as well as other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large vocabulary speech-recognition device.

In a new article entitled Dear PC - R.I.P - Ray Kurzweil says :

    "Many long-range forecasts of technical feasibility dramatically underestimate the power of future technology. It is not the case that we will experience 100 years of progress in the 21st century; rather we will witness on the order of 20,000 years of progress (at today's rate of progress, that is). By 2009, computers will disappear. Visual information will be written directly onto our retinas by devices in our eyeglasses and contact lenses. In addition to high resolution virtual monitors appearing to hover in space, these intimate displays will provide full-immersion visual virtual reality."
This stimulating article was in the September issue of Business 2.0 - and you can read it on the web:

Click Read Kurzweil's article at Business 2.0

Kurzweil Book Get Ray Kurzweil's book The Age of the Spiritual Machine

George Gilder's new book : Telecosm

"Telecosm - How infinite bandwidth will revolutionize our world." This new (Sept. 2000) long-awaited book is a bible of the new age of communications. To seek the key to the future, look to communication power, or bandwidth, which is exploding; its abundance is the most important fact of our time. One of the great technological visionaries of this age, George Gilder's track record of futurist predictions is one of the best. Equal parts science story, business history, social analysis and prediction, this book makes sense of the titanic changes underway. It is difficult to read - but read it!

Telecosm Gilder's Telecosm

*spark-online* - Evolution of the Techno-Human

*spark-online* is a popular monthly "webzine" that sets out to explore electronic consciousness - technology, media, politics, business & culture. The November issue has my latest article: Evolution of the TechnoHuman - read it on the web, and see if you like the content of *spark*.

check out *spark-online* *spark-online* November '00

Synopsis of my article : Is technology changing humans? Will the rapid advances in technology in the coming century cause, or allow, a different type of human to evolve? Will the span of human life extend beyond 150-200 years? Will synthetic life develop and evolve? Significant philosophical, ethical, moral, legal and sociological questions must be answered, as we move forward in a new century and millennium.

Read Evolution of the Techno-human Read Jim's webzine article

Fertility Time

I am a techno-geek - I buy all the latest gadgets and services. But, I've got to admit that perhaps our digital, connected world is offering some strange connections. Several European websites called "Zappybaby” allow a woman to type in her fertility cycle, and the site will then send a text message to her (or to her partner's) cell phone when the time is right!

This internet service started in Germany, but is also well established in the UK and several other European countries. Take a look at these websites (various European languages). Let me know if you can find the equivalent in English.

Click Zappybaby (German)

Click Zappybaby (Dutch)


I had a lot of eFeedback on my Honeywell-sold-to-GE story. Apparently no one really tells-it-like-it is, and many people appreciate the "no platitudes attitude". Here is a sample of my email, from a long-time Honeyweller :

    "It was with great interest that I read your article. It was sent to me by my former boss who left Honeywell last year. I'm still there and I have to comment that the division management is downsizing, outsourcing, and adding middle managers like crazy. The knowledge infrastructure is rapidly being driven from the company. New products are slow to market and managers routinely lie to employees. It has become a very strange place to work. I really couldn't recommend it to anyone seeking employment."

In a previous eNews, I mentioned that Dick Morley, the inventor of the PLC, was a founder of Modicon. Dick e-wrote with this interesting correction about his development incubator, Bedford Associates and its relationship with Modicon, now part of Groupe Schneider :

    "Bedford Associates did not change into Modicon. Bedford was founded in 1964 and one of its projects was Modicon, which became a separate corporation and started in '68."

After I disclosed proudly that I had an old 286 PC in my attic, I got a barrage of one-up - er one-downsmanship email :

Dave Korpi (korpi@quixnet.net) e-wrote :

    "I still have my very FIRST Zenith PC that I built from a kit. The thing was SUPER ROBUST! I had sparks fly out of it more than once while trying to figure out the pin-out to make my own A2D, D2A and wiring up a 9513 clock chip. It has Digital Research "Concurrent PC DOS" that still does a better job of full concurrency than Windows! I'll bet some folks still have their old Altair! And that's gotta be worth SOMETHING!"

Willy Smith (numatico@racsa.co.cr) e-boasted, all the way from his hideaway in Costa Rica:

    "I'll tell you a secret. I've still got my Apple ][, Commodore 64, and a TI 99 in my shop attic, as well as an original IBM PC with 4.77 MHz clock, 64K RAM, and a cassette interface!"

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