A few months back, Jerry Baldwin, our CEO, gave me a strange assignment. “We need something different, something fun,” he said. “Go write an ebook.”
I must have looked puzzled because he went on, “Write what you want, be creative. If I like it, we’ll figure out what to do with it. If I don’t, it was a nice try.”
I think he was serious at the time, but he probably figured I wouldn’t get around to it or other projects would take priority. But as far as I was concerned, it was a challenge. And I aimed to come back with something different, and compelling, and relevant, and cool.
This turned out to be an awesome project, not only because I could run wild, but because I had permission to fail, which made all the difference. So in an unselfconscious manner I started typing—thinking about how drastically our lives have changed because of the Internet—the most significant invention of our lifetime.
I’m proud to share the result of this unusual assignment. I hope you get a chance to rise to a similar challenge one of these days: go do something different, you have permission to fail.
Smile, share, and enjoy The Everything Age (A Pop Culture eBook for Geeks).
..I enjoyed the read and remember playing ZORK on my DEC Rainbow back in my IT days..,while at present involved with the resale of SAN-less virtualized data solutions to the online gaming community. The proliferation of mobile devices and the Cloud have amplified the ever-increasing need for 24xforever internet access and I for one cannot fathom living without the internet, and heaven forbid having to wait for online query results. On the second to the last page of 'The Everything Age', that wonderful second paragraph, it would have been OK to have a hyperlink to a V-LOCITY overview on the "..here is technology that delivers time." line.
The permission to fail is the difference. All persons has good ideas but the condition for not to have mistakes create the wall between the challange and the glory.
All enterprises could have projects with permission to fail maybe we have best results.
FOR THINK: With big pressure does diamonds, but need time and all things happen naturally.
It was a nice assignment, and I'm happy for you that you got it. I only browsed the book, but as often happens came upon something I didn't like so had to comment.
I assume you live in the US, which is why the internet brought you to an age of digital content. But for many other people it brought and age of digital borders. When I was young I bought things locally. Then the internet came and I could easily order physical products from other countries, and that was marvelous. Then came digital content, and suddenly I couldn't buy it. I could buy a CD from a store abroad, but I couldn't buy an MP3. I could order a physical book, but I couldn't order an e-book. I could order a DVD or Blu-ray, but not download a movie or stream it.
So I feel that it's the age of "almost everything". Sure, it's still better than having to rely only on what's available locally, but it's in some ways worse than what we had — and still have — when ordering physical products. This really doesn't feel good.