Friday, January 25, 2002

There is a big flap over John Katz's review of David Weinberger's new book Small Pieces ,Loosely Joined. I've recently joined the fray in my participation on a thread in the ongoing melee. I've been thinking about it a lot and people who say the net really isn't changing anything in a revolutionary way have no concept of the impact of their own actions on the economy, and culture. Where we used to call people on the phone we now send email. This drains money away from long distance carriers and funnels some of it to ISPs, etc. When we shop on line for books the local book store looses a sale, the online store maybe gets a chance to pull a profit, and FedEx gets a few bucks that it wouldn't normally have received. All these secondary effects add up. They are changing the economy and culture. They are a shift and they are revolutionary. Think of the industry that has popped up around web/internet based technology. (app servers, toolkits, html editors, etc.) Many of those companies didn't exist before 1999. Some may not live very much longer but there will be those that will left standing. I think most of the controversy here is generated by a number of people who are disenchanted with the Internet in the same way some people are disenchanted with the space program. Sure I wish I were writing this from my house on Mars but we're not there, yet.

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