Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Optimism of the will

Highlights here from a great piece on technology, the future and why we shouldn't be as gloomy.

Meanwhile, Paul Otellini, the top man at Intel gushed out his enthusiasm on what he calls "a personal net." He predicts that a range of devices will emerge, each with at least the processing power of a current PC, offering their own "specialist features," but which will all interface to the Internet. And in his Arthur C Clarke moment said, "Instead of going to the Internet, the Internet comes to us."

"Our business model is one of very high risk," he said. "We dig a very big hole in the ground, spend three billion dollars to build a factory in it, which takes three years, to produce technology we haven't invented yet, to run products we haven't designed yet, for markets which don't exist." Ummm, wonder if he could have got that business idea past the rich boys and girls in Dragon's Den. "I see Mr Otellini, but what I want to know is have you got distribution in Boots lined up for this product that doesn't exist yet."

It's very easy to be cynical about technology, but the truth is, it's Brits' cynicism that has held back the UK industry. Only in America could you hear so much optimism, so much willingness to throw money at products that don't even exist on paper. Google could never have got off the ground in any other country, (remember, its founders didn't even know how it would generate revenue when backing was secured) and the same applies to today's social networking sites.

It's from a financial email I get, which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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