Y2K

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pages: 333 words: 86,662

Zeitgeist by Bruce Sterling

anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Frank Gehry, Grace Hopper, informal economy, invisible hand, Iridium satellite, jitney, market bubble, Maui Hawaii, new economy, offshore financial centre, rolodex, sexual politics, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Ted Kaczynski, the scientific method, undersea cable, upwardly mobile, urban decay, Y2K

There’s been drug addiction, bankruptcy, jet lag, sex scandals. There was pregnancy, herpes, motorcycle spills, punch-ups in nightclubs, wigs ripped off, fan stampedes, hotel thefts, you name it. But no dead ones. Because every single one of them makes it to Y2K alive. That is a central part of the G-7 magic.” Ozbey frowned thoughtfully. “Did you say, ‘through Y2K alive’?” “No, no, I said to Y2K alive.” “I see.” “Because, see, that’s when we wrap it all up and put it away. Once we’re past Y2K, well, who gives a shit? It’s all yesterday then, it’s not my problem. But up to Y2K, yes, that is my problem. And that means, now, that it’s your problem.” “Was this really part of the arrangement?” “Absolutely. From before the start of the band. No dead ones. Can you promise me that? No dead ones?” Ozbey wasn’t having it.

Before I understood my own destiny, I could tolerate having you in the same reality. But not anymore. You have the smell of doom.” “What about the band?” “I am breaking your number-one rule. They are useful to me, and they matter. After Y2K they will only matter more. I am turning them into my own weapon.” “You break that number-one rule, pal, and you are dead in Y2K.” “No, Starlitz. You’re just projecting your own Westernized assumptions. You are dead in Y2K.” “I’m promising you, right now—you drop the band, or you are dead in Y2K.” “I’m not dead in Y2K. I’m just getting started. You are dead.” “Ozbey, wake up, man. You have already got two and a half Dead Ones. You can’t keep piling them up. Do you think smack is Coca-Cola? They’re both addictive, but it’s a matter of degree and kind.”

My little angel … God, the camera loved her so much!” “I knew she’d never make it through Y2K,” Starlitz said slowly. “I didn’t say anything to you … but I mean, how could she? How the hell could she?” “I always tried to keep her out of fast cars,” Wiesel confessed in anguish. “And Paris. I never took her to Paris, ever.” “Look, you can’t blame yourself, man. Sometimes the narrative just shuts down, you know? There’s no sequel possible. You can’t extend the franchise.” “I know that,” Wiesel said in black despair. “It’s Y2K, boyo. It’s that bleedin’ glass wall.…” “Well, then.” “I’m not gonna make it either.” “The fuck you talking about? Of course you’re gonna make it! The next century, that’s gonna be the golden age of surveillance. You’re much better off without her, man. After Y2K you’re finally coming into your own.” “No, that isn’t true.


Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen by Dan Heath

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airport security, Albert Einstein, bank run, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, illegal immigration, Internet of things, mandatory minimum, millennium bug, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, payday loans, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, self-driving car, Skype, Snapchat, subscription business, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Y2K

Chapter 12: The Chicken Little Problem: Distant and Improbable Threats 1999 as a VHS tape: Y2K Family Survival Guide with Leonard Nimoy, 1999, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEhEQEG43RU. John Koskinen was the man tasked: The Y2K preparation story comes from two interviews with Koskinen in May 2019 and an excerpt from an unpublished draft of his memoir. Other details not from those sources are noted below. The Federal Reserve ordered $50 billion: Bert Caldwell, “Bank Regulators Feel Confident Federal Reserve Prints Extra $50 Billion in Currency,” Spokesman Review, December 4, 1999; Ruth Simon, “Wall Street Deploys Troops to Battle Y2K—Nervous Investors Hoard Cash Gold as Chaos Hedges,” Wall Street Journal, December 22, 1999. lost touch… with some intelligence satellites: President’s Council, The Journey to Y2K: Final Report of the President’s Council on Year 2000 Conversion, March 29, 2000, https://itlaw.wikia.org/wiki/The_Journey_to_Y2K:_Final_Report_of_the_President%27s_Council_on_Year_2000_Conversion.

But now we’ll examine upstream efforts to address problems that are unpreventable (like hurricanes) or uncommon (like an IT network being hacked) or downright far-fetched (humanity being extinguished by new technologies). Y2K was a one-off problem—a new kind of computer bug that humanity had never faced before and wouldn’t face again. John Koskinen was the man tasked with preventing the worst from happening. Koskinen had worked in the private sector turning around failed companies and, from 1994 to 1997, had been a senior leader at the Office of Management and Budget. Twenty-two months before the new millennium, in February 1998, Koskinen had accepted President Bill Clinton’s invitation to be the nation’s Y2K czar. The Y2K czar role was a classic no-win job, as Koskinen knew. “If everything went smoothly, people would say: ‘What was that all about? What a waste of time and money.’

The Federal Reserve ordered $50 billion in new currency printed and added into circulation nationwide. That’s about $500 for every household in the United States. In the months leading up to the new millennium, Koskinen grew increasingly certain that the Y2K bug would not cause major disruptions. His public communications and interviews were calm and confident. Still, on December 31, 1999, he was not anxiety-free. He worried about the situation globally—every country with IT systems was theoretically at risk from the Y2K bug, and the United States had become the de facto leader of the work internationally. Would there be a foreign country that had neglected Y2K work and saw a critical system collapse? That visible failure—made hysterical by the media—could be enough to spark panic-driven problems in the United States. As the first day of the new millennium began, the first reports were from New Zealand.


pages: 391 words: 99,963

The Weather of the Future by Heidi Cullen

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, air freight, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, availability heuristic, back-to-the-land, bank run, California gold rush, carbon footprint, clean water, colonial rule, energy security, illegal immigration, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Isaac Newton, Kickstarter, mass immigration, megacity, millennium bug, out of africa, Silicon Valley, smart cities, trade route, urban planning, Y2K

The greater the number of 0s in a year, the more we freak out,” explains Paul Saffo, a technology forecaster based in Silicon Valley who was among the first to push businesses to take Y2K seriously. He adds, “Y2K tapped into some pretty apocalyptic stuff. And in that sense I think it has some similarities with climate change.” Saffo is a consulting professor in the School of Engineering at Stanford University, where he teaches forecasting and the impact of technological change on the future. “Like Y2K, climate change is a technology problem that resonates with millennial anxieties.” I guess that would make climate change Y2K 2.0. Still, there are some important differences. Government and business spent on the order of $100 billion dollars fixing Y2K, but the problem of climate change is a lot bigger and a lot harder to solve. “And ultimately, the Y2K story ends happily with a bunch of geeks saving the world from a stupid problem the geeks themselves created,” Saffo says.

And as far as I could tell, the competing sense that we might also witness human civilization crushed by a little bug was not lost on anyone. That bug, of course, was the Y2K bug, the millenium bug. It was nothing more and nothing less than a computer bug resulting from the practice in early computer program design of representing the year with two digits. In fact, the term Y2K itself was born out of a good programmer’s relentless pursuit of efficiency. David Eddy, one of an army of programmers who worked on fixing the problem is credited with coining this term. He says he coined it on June 12, 1995,1 in an absentminded e-mail. “Being a good programmer,” he explains, “I’m a minimalist typist. And Y2K was simply 60 percent less effort/cheaper to type than year 2000.” Funny the way good intentions can come back to haunt us. Actually, Y2K was wrapped up in something much bigger. “Y2K coincided with the end of the millennium, so it became somewhat of a Rorschach blot for our collective anxiety about the future.

The thinking is that if people can see what New York might look like in the future, they will opt to avoid the unnecessary drama, of which rising temperature is just one example. “I know it’s old-fashioned. But I am very much into win-win solutions. And anything we do today will help us today,” Rosenzweig adds. That ended up being true of Y2K as well. Saffo says you can credit the millennium bug for the swift rebound of New York City’s computing systems after the attacks of 9/11. “Y2K forced Wall Street to make upgrades. Wall Street had a Y2K drill. They practiced that drill and it paid off,” Saffo says. The system redundancies developed in anticipation of Y2K allowed the city’s transportation and telecommunications sectors to provide service despite the enormous damage on 9/11. Those redundant networks and contingency plans put in place by an army of geeks led to an opportunity that may well have saved lives.


pages: 429 words: 114,726

The Computer Boys Take Over: Computers, Programmers, and the Politics of Technical Expertise by Nathan L. Ensmenger

barriers to entry, business process, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, deskilling, Donald Knuth, Firefox, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, Grace Hopper, informal economy, information retrieval, interchangeable parts, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, job satisfaction, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, loose coupling, new economy, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, performance metric, Philip Mirowski, post-industrial society, Productivity paradox, RAND corporation, Robert Gordon, Shoshana Zuboff, sorting algorithm, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, the market place, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thorstein Veblen, Turing machine, Von Neumann architecture, Y2K

The possible consequences of this seemingly trivial programming error included banks failing, airplanes falling out of the sky, possibly even an unintended nuclear war.1 “The Y2K problem is the electronic equivalent of the El Niño,” the United States Deputy Secretary of Defense John Hamre had warned a year earlier: “This is going to have implications in the world . . . that we can’t even comprehend.”2 Over the course of the months leading up to the year 2000, computer programmers in the United States alone had invested more than $300 billion in last-minute attempts to remediate the possible consequences of the so-called Y2K Bug; even still, the final minutes prior to midnight were tense with uncertainty. Like most crises, the salience of the Y2K problem diminished almost immediately upon its failure to materialize. To the average citizen, the fuss that the computer people made about Y2K was just one of several apocalyptic scenarios that swirled around the turn of the millennium, all of which seem, in retrospect, self-evidently unfounded.

For experienced observers of the computer industry, however, the shortcomings of contemporary software development practices revealed by Y2K were both very real and depressingly familiar. Once the proximate technical cause of the problem had been clearly identified (the shortsighted decision, intentional or otherwise, to code calendar year data with two digits instead of four; i.e., “72” rather than “1972”), the discussion quickly turned to the deeper, more endemic problems associated with software development: haphazard techniques, a lack of professionalism, and insufficient managerial controls. In many respects, the Y2K problem was just another in long series of software crises which, as we have seen, have plagued the computer industry since its very inception. But Y2K in particular highlighted some of the lesser-known facets of the seemingly perpetual software crisis, the most interesting and surprising of which was the problem of software maintenance.

Five out of eight large corporations rely on COBOL code, many of them substantially. 70% of Merrill Lynch applications are coded in COBOL. The total value of active COBOL applications—many of them developed prior to the 1980s—is as high as $2 trillion.14 All of this COBOL code needs to actively maintained, modified, and expanded. The vast majority of the code that had to be remediated prior to Y2K was written in COBOL. That fact that so much of the $300 billion that was spent on Y2K involved the maintenance of existing code highlighted both the continued significance of, and dissatisfaction with, the work of computer programmers. Like all forms of maintenance, software maintenance is difficult, unpopular, and largely unrewarding. The maintenance requires programmers to work on live systems, where mistakes and failures have real and immediate consequences.


pages: 353 words: 355

The Long Boom: A Vision for the Coming Age of Prosperity by Peter Schwartz, Peter Leyden, Joel Hyatt

American ideology, Asian financial crisis, Berlin Wall, centre right, computer age, crony capitalism, cross-subsidies, Deng Xiaoping, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial innovation, hydrogen economy, industrial cluster, informal economy, intangible asset, Just-in-time delivery, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, life extension, market bubble, mass immigration, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, new economy, oil shock, open borders, Productivity paradox, QR code, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, upwardly mobile, Washington Consensus, Y2K

As the new century approaches, the year 2000, or Y2K, problem looms large. Talk about a lack of historical perspective! Here's a problem generated by the mass of computer programmers who collectively could not foresee that the computer code they were creating might need to survive more than the decade or two until the turn of the century. Their mistake affects programs with millions of lines of code that need to be tweaked. And many of the programs are housed in embedded chips that can't easily be reprogrammed—they are inside an electrical power grid, or a navigation system in a plane, or within the pipes pumping oil across Alaska. The failure of multiple computer systems, or even the expectation of such failures, could prompt a broad public backlash—or it may not. There's a very good chance that the Y2K problem will act like the 1973 oil crisis, which cut the supplies of oil, quadrupled the prices almost overnight, and forced almost every person in the world to recognize that the global economy's dependence on oil affected everyone.

That shock was a thunderous wakeup call that focused the world community on developing and deploying more efficient technologies. The same will be true of the Y2K problem. Most people do not understand how hooked we already are on computers, but if 54 The LONCJ BOOM widespread failures affect services of every kind, and if the global economy goes into a real wobble, they'll get the message. Even if the actual failures are relatively contained, the increasingly hysterical discussions leading up to the big day ("You mean my electricity, my food supply, the phones, hospitals, airplanes, everything could go down?") will drive the point home almost as well. The Y2K crisis will also accelerate the shift from the problematic computer systems that are a legacy of the past to the newest generation of networked computer systems, which are a solid foundation going forward into the new century.

For more information, please contact the Special Markets Department at HarperCollins Publishers, 10 last S3rd Street, New York, NY 10022, or call 1-212-207-7528, Visit us on the World Wide Web at www.basjcbooks.com CONTENTS Preface: A Shared Political Vision Introduction: The Historic Moment v 1 PART I TRAck the INEviTAbls 1 The Great Enabler "Openness Wins," 30 19 2 The Millennial Transition 1980, London, 37 "Going Global," 57 37 PART II Thi Politics of The Lowq BOOM 3 The New American Ideology 1990, Tokyo, 65 "Politics Adapts," 76 "Learning Innovation," 85 65 4 The New European Renaissance "The Inclusive Community," 102 91 5 Asia Rises Again 109 6 The Global Challenges 1999, San Francisco, 142 133 PART III THE ENQINES of THE TwENTY-fiRsT CENTURY 7 Saving the Planet "Growing Together," 165 149 iv CONTENTS 8 Dawn of the Hydrogen Age "Everyone Lets Go," 181 171 9 Technology Emulates Nature 187 10 Prepare for Wild Science "Expanding into Space," 221 211 PART IV BiRih of A GlobAl CivilizAiioN 11 The New Global Middle Class 2010, Rural California, 237 229 12 The Emergence of Women 2020, Capetown, 250 241 13 The Guiding Principles Go Global, 256 Open Up, 258 Let Go, 262 Grow More, 265 Always Adapt, 267 Keep Learning, 268 Value Innovation, 270 Get Connected, 271 Be Inclusive, 272 Stay Confident, 275 2050, American Heartland, 277 255 14 The Choice 281 AflERWORd A Memo to the President-Elect The Story of the Idea Notes Selected Bibliography About the Authors Index 291 295 303 315 321 323 PREFACE A SHAREd PoliTicAl VISION the publication of the hardcover edition of this book a year s ince ago, each week seems to bring another positive story: The American economy continues its longest expansion ever. Unemployment is down, wages are up, and inflation is nowhere to be seen. Federal surpluses are projected to top $3 trillion over the next decade. Crime rates are plummeting in the inner cities. The expected Y2K compute meltdown never happens. The crashed Asian economies are bouncing back. Europe is booming and its chronic unemployment rates are finally coming down. China moved much closer toward acceptance into the World Trade Organization, Terrorist North Korea comes in from the cold. Russia succeeds in democratically electing a capable leader. Mexico breaks the lock of one-party rule. Scientists complete mapping the human genome.


pages: 127 words: 51,083

The Oil Age Is Over: What to Expect as the World Runs Out of Cheap Oil, 2005-2050 by Matt Savinar

Albert Einstein, clean water, energy security, hydrogen economy, illegal immigration, invisible hand, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, peak oil, post-oil, Ralph Nader, reserve currency, Rosa Parks, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Y2K

Peak Oil differs from previous “end of the world” scenarios such as Y2K in the following ways: 1. Peak Oil is not an “if” but a “when.” Furthermore, it is not a “when during the next 1,000 years,” but a “when during the next 10 years.” 2. Peak Oil is based on scientific fact, not subjective speculation. 3. Government and industry began preparing for Y2K a full 5-10 years before the problem was to occur. We are within 10 years of Peak Oil, and we have made no preparations for it. 4. The preparations necessary to deal with Peak Oil will require a complete overhaul of every aspect of our civilization. This is much more complex than fixing a computer bug. 5. Furthermore, oil is more fundamental to our existence than anything else, even computers. Had the Y2K predictions come true, our civilization would have been knocked back to 1965.

The "end of the world" is here, once again. So what's new? Y2K was supposed to be the end of the world, and it turned out to be much ado about nothing. What's new is that this is the real thing. . It isn't a fire drill. It isn't paranoid hysteria. It is the real deal. George W. Bush's Energy Advisor, Matthew Simmons, addressed this issue at the Paris Peak Oil Conference, stating: I think it is human nature, basically, to say that we really like to have pleasant thoughts. The one crying wolf is abandoned unless the wolf turns out to be already at the front door, and by then, the cry is generally too late. And crises are basically problems, by definition, that have gone ignored. And all great crises were ignored until it became too late to do anything about it.70 Peak Oil isn't "Y2K Reloaded." Peak Oil differs from previous “end of the world” scenarios such as Y2K in the following ways: 1.

................................. 32 23. If this were all true, wouldn't you see gas stations closing left and right? ................... 33 24. Didn't the Club of Rome make this exact same prediction back in the 70s?................ 33 25. We had oil problems back in the 1970s. How is this any different? ............................ 34 26. The "end of the world" is here, once again. So what's new? Y2K was supposed to be the end of the world, and it turned out to be much ado about nothing. ................... 35 27. How does all this tie in with Global Climate Change?................................................. 36 28. There is no way humanity will go extinct as a result of Peak Oil. ............................... 36 29. My friend, who is really knowledgeable about these things, keeps insisting we have 35 years of oil left. ........................................................................................................ 36 Part III: Alternatives to Oil: Fuels of the Future or Cruel Hoaxes?


pages: 696 words: 143,736

The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence by Ray Kurzweil

Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Albert Einstein, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cellular automata, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, computer age, computer vision, cosmological constant, cosmological principle, Danny Hillis, double helix, Douglas Hofstadter, Everything should be made as simple as possible, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, fudge factor, George Gilder, Gödel, Escher, Bach, I think there is a world market for maybe five computers, information retrieval, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Jacquard loom, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Lao Tzu, Law of Accelerating Returns, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, optical character recognition, ought to be enough for anybody, pattern recognition, phenotype, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Robert Metcalfe, Schrödinger's Cat, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, speech recognition, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, stochastic process, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, telepresence, the medium is the message, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, traveling salesman, Turing machine, Turing test, Whole Earth Review, Y2K

Business and government would operate at only the most primitive level. And if all the data in all the computers vanished, then we’d really be in trouble. There has been substantial concern with Y2K (Year 2000 Problem), that at least some computer processes will be disrupted as we approach the year 2000. Y2K primarily concerns software developed one or more decades ago in which date fields used only two digits, which will cause these programs to behave erratically when the year becomes “00.” I am more sanguine than some about this particular issue. Y2K is causing the urgent rewriting of old business programs that needed to be dusted off and redesigned anyway. There will be some disruptions (and a lot of litigation), but in my view Y2K is unlikely to cause the massive economic problems that are feared.1 In less than forty years, we have gone from manual methods of controlling our lives and civilization to becoming totally dependent on the continued operation of our computers.

Benson’s work, see his book The Relaxation Response (New York: Avon, 1990). 28 “ ‘God Spot’ Is Found in Brain,” Sunday Times (Britain), November 2, 1997. CHAPTER 8: 1999 1 The U.S. Federal Government Gateway for Year 2000 Information Directories, at <http://www.itpolicy.gsa.gov/mks/yr2000/y2khome.htm>, contain a number of links to web pages devoted to Y2K issues. There are also many discussion groups on the Web about the Y2K topic. Simply do a search for “Y2K discussion” using a search engine such as Yahoo (www.yahoo.com) to find a number of web pages devoted to this subject. 2 David Cope talks about his EMI program in his book Experiments in Musical Intelligence (Madison, WI: A-R Editions, 1996). EMI is also discussed in Margaret Boden “Artificial Genius,” Discover magazine, October 1996. 3 For more about the Improvisor program, see Margaret Boden, “Artificial Genius,” Discover magazine, October 1996.

The primary user interface paradigm of the “web” is based on hypertext, which consists of documents (which can contain any type of data) connected by “links,” which the user selects by a pointing device such as a mouse. The Web is a system of data-and-message servers linked by high-capacity communication links that can be accessed by any computer user with a “web browser” and Internet access. With the introduction of Windows98, access to the Web is built into the operating system. By the late twenty-first century, the Web will provide the distributed computing medium for software-based humans. Y2K (year 2000 problem) Refers to anticipated difficulties caused by software (usually developed several decades prior to the year 2000) in which date fields used only two digits. Unless the software is adjusted, this will cause computer programs to behave erratically when the year becomes “00.” These programs will mistake the year 2000 for 1900. NOTES PROLOGUE: AN INEXORABLE EMERGENCE 1 My recollections of The Twilight Zone episode are essentially accurate, although the gambler is actually a small-time crook named Rocky Valentine.


pages: 103 words: 24,033

The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent by Vivek Wadhwa

card file, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, Elon Musk, immigration reform, Marc Andreessen, open economy, pattern recognition, Ray Kurzweil, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, software as a service, the new new thing, Y2K

Equally important, as I previously discussed, is to consider the average duration of time immigrant entrepreneurs spend in the United States before launching their own company: 13 years. This means large numbers of the cohort that entered the United States during the Y2K run-up—the largest H-1B cohort ever—are likely to be considering whether to start a business. From the research data I covered in chapter 2, we can conclude that at least some of them are deciding either not to start a business or, more likely, to start a business somewhere else. Right now we should see a spike in immigrant-founded tech startups as a result of the large spike in H-1B entrants we saw 15 years ago during the Y2K run-up. On a personal note, if I were a young immigrant technologist in my mid-30s, stuck on an H-1B visa in America, and trapped in a middling job, I would probably have decided to return to Australia or India.

H-1B workers who are not born in India and China, and who are sponsored under a green card category applicable to advanced degrees, do not have to wait for nearly as long. However, workers who were not born in India or China, if they are sponsored in another green card category applicable to positions requiring bachelor degrees or two years of experience, still have to wait at least five years. In 1991, more than 50,000 H-1B visas were issued. The numbers rose steadily over the next two decades. This included significant increases during the run-up to the Y2K as the United States sought to prepare for what was then believed to be a major IT crisis that could significantly disrupt economic activity and open security breaches in networked IT infrastructures. In 1999, the number of H-1Bs issued exceeded 100,000. From 2001 to 2003, there were 195,000 visas issued. The US government dropped the cap on H-1B visas to 65,000 for fiscal year 2004, decreasing the supply.

“But I would advise serious caution on coming here with a J-1 visa if the current policies don’t change and the country caps and overall caps remain the same.” In every major US city, at every US university, in every major US technology company, in every hospital, you can find people like Puneet Arora—high achievers who have been stuck in limbo many years. The cause of this problem is simple. During the run-up to Y2K and the dot-com boom, the United States significantly boosted H-1B permits. Since then it has failed to boost the number of green cards available to those H-1B holders. This has led to an enormous bubble of smart, talented people like Arora. How big is that bubble? More than one million people. We touched on this in our 2010 report titled “How Many Highly Skilled Foreign-Born Are Waiting in Line for US Legal Permanent Residence?”


pages: 435 words: 127,403

Panderer to Power by Frederick Sheehan

"Robert Solow", Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, buy and hold, call centre, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, corporate governance, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, deindustrialization, diversification, financial deregulation, financial innovation, full employment, inflation targeting, interest rate swap, inventory management, Isaac Newton, John Meriwether, margin call, market bubble, McMansion, Menlo Park, money market fund, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, new economy, Norman Mailer, Northern Rock, oil shock, Paul Samuelson, place-making, Ponzi scheme, price stability, reserve currency, rising living standards, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, savings glut, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, South Sea Bubble, stocks for the long run, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, The Great Moderation, too big to fail, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, VA Linux, Y2K, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

A History of the Boom and the Bust, 1982–2004, Maggie Mahar writes: “That two-thirds of these CFOs freely admitted that they had been asked to goose the numbers suggested that the type of person who might blanch at such a suggestion had probably fallen off the corporate ladder early on in the bull market.”23 That Greenspan would still take the word of corporate executives at face value is difficult to believe. Greenspan’s Y2K Fear: Another Dog That Did Nothing in the Nighttime Greenspan’s Y2K fear (“Year 2000”) was contributed by technology companies, the same experts who were compressing information from months to minutes. Computers built 20 or 30 years earlier were not capable of calculating the “2” digit to succeed the “1” when “1999” came to a close. We were doomed: the developed world would cease to function at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Planes and elevators would fall from the sky; sewage plants would burst, ruining water supplies; financial calculations (in statements and security prices) would make us all billionaires, or broke.

Greenspan may have believed the prophecies, or he may have feared that panic ahead of the millennium would drain the banking system of cash. Whatever the case, he told the Senate Banking Committee that the Fed was preparing to let loose $50 billion into the banking system.24 The gates were so wide open that there was nothing the Fed could do to slow the market’s ascent. Yet there was very little talk of Y2K in FOMC meetings. It had been discussed a couple of times at meetings over the previous two years, but never in reference to monetary policy.25 No one mentioned the $50 billion. Given the amount of time the FOMC debated symmetric and asymmetric communiqués, a word or two about $50 billion dropped into the banking system would seem appropriate. 22 BusinessWeek, July 13, 1998, p. 113 “The Seventh Annual BusinessWeek Forum of Chief Financial Officers,” polling provided by Meridia Audience Response, Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania. 23 Maggie Mahar, Bull!

This page intentionally left blank 18 Greenspan’s Postbubble Solution: Tighten Money January–May 2000 I would not only reappoint Mr. Greenspan; if Mr. Greenspan should happen to die, God forbid … I would prop him up and put a pair of dark glasses on him.1 —Presidential candidate John McCain, 2000 The millennial media coverage fed the growing consensus of one world converging—unless it collapsed on New Year’s Eve. The dire Y2K predictions by technology experts went unfulfilled. Not an elevator plunged nor a computer failed. The experts contended that never-ending overtime work had corrected any potential problems. There is no question that late-night shifts by computer programmers modified and improved computer systems. Nevertheless, that not a single silicon wafer anywhere failed sowed seeds of doubt about the expertise of the experts.


pages: 222 words: 54,506

One Click: Jeff Bezos and the Rise of Amazon.com by Richard L. Brandt

Amazon Web Services, automated trading system, big-box store, call centre, cloud computing, Dynabook, Elon Musk, inventory management, Jeff Bezos, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Marc Andreessen, new economy, science of happiness, search inside the book, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, software patent, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Tony Hsieh, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

“I’m a change junkie, and I can’t imagine an environment more changing than the Internet in general and Amazon.com in particular.” Well, the Internet was changing, all right. After the Y2K scare turned out to be less threatening than a two-year-old’s Halloween costume, everybody stopped upgrading the computers they had previously feared would crash, sending airplanes plummeting from the sky. Instead, sales of computers and other tech products did the plummeting, starting January 1, 2000. Within a few months, as the terrible sales started showing up in quarterly financial reports, tech stocks followed suit, and the dot-com bubble imploded like stars into a black hole. Amazon’s crash coincided with the dot-com crash, which became apparent after Amazon reported its first quarter results in April 2000 (the first quarter after Y2K-induced buying stopped). The crash certainly contributed to the collapse of Amazon’s stock price.

The crash certainly contributed to the collapse of Amazon’s stock price. But it does not account for the sudden slowing in Amazon’s revenues. After all, most of Amazon’s revenues came from non-tech products, so the end of the tech-buying binge should not have hurt Amazon as much as other tech companies. But signs of trouble at Amazon began even before Y2K hit and ran. Even as late as December 1999, analysts were projecting a net loss for Amazon of as much as $350 million. But the loss came in at a whopping $720 million, even though revenues had more than doubled, to $1.6 billion. The year 2000 merely exacerbated the problems that had started at Amazon in the year Y1.999K. After years of annual reports to shareholders that began with a letter full of hyperactive hyperbole about the previous spectacular year, Bezos began his letter for the year 2000 annual report with: “Ouch.

Bezos’s strategy of growing as fast as possible worked, putting the company into a position that made it almost impossible for anyone to catch (even today), at least in retailing. But the company had also started to spin out of control, plagued by inefficiency and overcapacity. With everything in high gear and the gas pedal to the floor, it was not able to stop quickly enough to avoid slamming into the wall that suddenly appeared around the Y2K bend. At the end of 1999, for example, Amazon’s most recent warehouse, an 850,000-square-foot behemoth in Coffeyville, Kansas, was only 10 percent utilized. Bezos was anticipating that the company’s continued torrid growth into new markets would fill the warehouse with new products soon enough. He was still pursuing the strategy that it was better to have too much capacity now than not enough when needed, which would delay the delivery of products and anger customers.


pages: 1,242 words: 317,903

The Man Who Knew: The Life and Times of Alan Greenspan by Sebastian Mallaby

"Robert Solow", airline deregulation, airport security, Andrei Shleifer, anti-communist, Asian financial crisis, balance sheet recession, bank run, barriers to entry, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bretton Woods, business cycle, central bank independence, centralized clearinghouse, collateralized debt obligation, conceptual framework, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, currency peg, energy security, equity premium, fiat currency, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, Flash crash, forward guidance, full employment, Hyman Minsky, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, interest rate swap, inventory management, invisible hand, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, Kitchen Debate, laissez-faire capitalism, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, market bubble, market clearing, Martin Wolf, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, new economy, Nixon shock, Northern Rock, paper trading, paradox of thrift, Paul Samuelson, plutocrats, Plutocrats, popular capitalism, price stability, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, savings glut, secular stagnation, short selling, The Great Moderation, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, trade liberalization, unorthodox policies, upwardly mobile, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Y2K, yield curve, zero-sum game

Computers running on processors not protected from this “Y2K bug” could suffer debilitating glitches. And because trillions of dollars existed as 1s and 0s in banks’ hard drives, a software failure threatened to ignite panic throughout the economy. By the summer of 1999, the ripples from the Y2K problem were already apparent. Market interest rates rose that summer as businesses scrambled to lock in funding ahead of possible disruptions to credit markets; the corporate bond market was “acting like all Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are playing polo on Wall Street,” one commentator said, in a fit of galloping hyperbole.24 Spying a textbook case in which the lender of last resort ought to step in, Greenspan readied his response to the apocalypse.25 Greenspan rolled out his Y2K plan in late October. It was both imaginative and vigorous.

However, Treasury Secretary Rubin had been a principal obstacle to passage of the banking reform that ratified Citi’s structure. 24. John Waggoner, “Fear Sting of Y2K? Try Corporate Bond Funds,” USA Today, July 30, 1999. 25. At the FOMC meeting in August, Greenspan argued that the staff had underestimated the effects of Y2K. 26. “If we’re completely successful in the message we give, we may never have a single one of these options exercised. That would be victory,” Vice Chairman McDonough said at the August 24 FOMC meeting. “Not exercised and not even purchased,” Greenspan replied. 27. The Fed continued auctioning off Y2K financing options each week until December 1, when the dwindling number of participants signaled that demand had been satisfied. By the time the auctions ended, participating banks had bought options on $489 billion in backup funding.

It was both imaginative and vigorous. The Fed would pre-position emergency stocks of shrink-wrapped currency at ninety locations across the nation; crisis-management teams would be prepared in every Federal Reserve district. Meanwhile, armed with a newly created Y2K fund, the Fed offered to sell banks a promise of liquidity: they could buy options on short-term loans around the century date change. Greenspan hoped that merely dangling these options would calm Y2K fears; perhaps no one would actually purchase them.26 But the banks snapped up the options the way ordinary citizens were expressing their millennial anxieties by stockpiling canned goods—at the first auction on October 20, banks submitted bids to buy five times more options than the central bank was offering. The Fed duly responded by auctioning more options over the next days.


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Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto by Stewart Brand

agricultural Revolution, Asilomar, Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA, back-to-the-land, biofilm, borderless world, Buckminster Fuller, business process, Cass Sunstein, clean water, Community Supported Agriculture, conceptual framework, Danny Hillis, dark matter, decarbonisation, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Elon Musk, Exxon Valdez, failed state, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, glass ceiling, Google Earth, Hans Rosling, Hernando de Soto, informal economy, interchangeable parts, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, invention of the steam engine, Jane Jacobs, jimmy wales, Kevin Kelly, Kibera, land tenure, lateral thinking, low earth orbit, M-Pesa, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, microbiome, New Urbanism, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, out of africa, Paul Graham, peak oil, Peter Calthorpe, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, smart grid, stem cell, Stewart Brand, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Thomas Malthus, University of East Anglia, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, wealth creators, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, William Langewiesche, working-age population, Y2K

Another hard task is to beware of the plausible little stories we tell ourselves. In 1998 I was sure that the Y2K bug would be a major problem, and said so in public and to clients of Global Business Network. My wrong prediction was based on a neat little story I told myself. My own PC was pathetically vulnerable to bugs in the software, which could lead to a cascade of problems ending in the blue screen of death. Surely, I presumed, the huge old mainframes of the world and their ancient software would be even more vulnerable to a bug as deeply embedded as I thought Y2K must be. The world was facing the blue screen of death! I should have listened to Danny Hillis, who has designed whole computer platforms. He predicted that Y2K would lead, at worst, to some dog licenses not being renewed on time. I should have listened at a dinner in 1998 with senior Amazon.com engineers.

It was borrowed verbatim and unattributed from a 1998 essay privately published by Geri Guidetti, who runs the Ark Institute, a survivalist seed supply service in Oregon. According to one online description, Guidetti “has taught the biological and biochemical sciences at universities across the US for 20 years. She has authored hundreds of science and research articles.” Maybe so, but all I could find online by her were interviews and essays about the dangers of Y2K, bird flu, terrorists, and terminator technology.) The fear that GE sterility technology would require the annual purchase of seeds is less novel and less alarming when viewed in the context of standard agricultural practice. Most farmers buy vigorous new hybrid seeds every year and have for decades. Hybrid seeds don’t “breed true”: the next generation is a chaotic mix. “From the seed company’s point of view,” explains Raoul Adamchak,this is great, for each year the hybrid seeds have to be created anew by the seed company.

I should have listened at a dinner in 1998 with senior Amazon.com engineers. One of them responded to my rant about Y2K by sweetly inquiring, “Do you also believe in fairies?” Lesson: Question convenient fables; listen most closely to the scientists who know the facts best, have studied them longest, and aren’t biased by an agenda or an employer with an agenda. Following the publication of his Plows, Plagues and Petroleum, climatologist William Ruddiman found he was suddenly the target of a barrage of propaganda:These newsletters opened a window on a different side of science, a parallel universe of which I had been only partly aware. The content of these newsletters purports to be scientific but actually has more in common with hardball politics. Most of these articles come from contrarian web sites that receive large amounts of financial support from industry sources.


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Overcomplicated: Technology at the Limits of Comprehension by Samuel Arbesman

algorithmic trading, Anton Chekhov, Apple II, Benoit Mandelbrot, citation needed, combinatorial explosion, Danny Hillis, David Brooks, digital map, discovery of the americas, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Flash crash, friendly AI, game design, Google X / Alphabet X, Googley, HyperCard, Inbox Zero, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Kevin Kelly, Machine translation of "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." to Russian and back, mandelbrot fractal, Minecraft, Netflix Prize, Nicholas Carr, Parkinson's law, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, software studies, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, superintelligent machines, Therac-25, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

No matter how hard we try to avoid this outcome, we are going to end up with increasing complexity in the technologies that touch every aspect of our lives. To begin with, the most obvious reasons we end up with increasingly complex systems over time are the twin forces of accretion and interaction: adding more parts to something over time, and adding more connections between those parts. Accretion In the years leading up to January 1, 2000, many engineers were concerned with fixing the Y2K bug. In a nutshell, when a piece of software that used only two digits to store the year—rather than four—rolled over into the year 2000, it would assume it to be 1900 instead, and potential problems could arise. No one was more focused on handling this problem than those at the Federal Aviation Administration. If the air traffic control system began to malfunction come the New Year, that would be a huge problem.

Windows operating system became: Kelly, What Technology Wants, 279; David McCandless, “Codebases: Millions of Lines of Code,” infographic, v. 0.9, Information Is Beautiful, September 24, 2015, http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/million-lines-of-code/. software application Photoshop: McCandless, “Codebases.” the American telephone system: M. D. Fagen, ed., A History of Engineering and Science in the Bell System: The Early Years (1875–1925), Technical Publication Department, Bell Laboratories, 1975. FAA began to examine its computers: The story of the FAA’s concern about Y2K is from Homer-Dixon, The Ingenuity Gap. representing the FAA technicians: Matthew L. Wald, “Warning Issued on Air Traffic Computers,” The New York Times, January 13, 1998, http://www.nytimes.com/1998/01/13/us/warning-issued-on-air-traffic-computers.html, accessed February 6, 2015. According to Homer-Dixon, one of the retired programmers was hired to help fix the problem. machines at the Internal Revenue Service: Anne Broache, “IRS Trudges On with Aging Computers,” CNET News, April 12, 2007.

., 33–34 construction, cost of, 48–50 Cope, David, 168–69, 229–30 corpus, in linguistics, 55–56 counting: cognitive limits on, 75 human vs. computer, 69–70, 97, 209 Cowen, Tyler, 84 Cryptonomicon (Stephenson), 128–29 “Crystalline Structure of Legal Thought, The” (Balkin), 60–61 Curiosity (Ball), 87–88 Dabbler badge, 144–45 dark code, 21–22 Darwin, Charles, 115, 221, 227 Daston, Lorraine, 140–41 data scientists, 143 datasets, massive, 81–82, 104–5, 143 debugging, 103–4 Deep Blue, 84 diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA), 134–35 digital mapping systems, 5, 49, 51 Dijkstra, Edsger, 3, 50–51, 155 “Divers Instances of Peculiarities of Nature, Both in Men and Brutes” (Fairfax), 111–12 diversity, 113–14, 115 see also complexity, complex systems DNA, see genomes Doyle, John, 222 Dreyfus, Hubert, 173 dwarfism, 120 Dyson, Freeman, on unity vs. diversity, 114 Dyson, George, 110 Economist, 41 edge cases, 53–62, 65, 116, 128, 141, 201, 205, 207 unexpected behavior and, 99–100 see also outliers Einstein, Albert, 114 Eisen, Michael, 61 email, evolution of, 32–33 emergence, in complex systems, 27 encryption software, bugs in, 97–98 Enlightenment, 23 Entanglement, Age of, 23–29, 71, 92, 96, 97, 165, 173, 175, 176 symptoms of, 100–102 Environmental Protection Agency, 41 evolution: aesthetics and, 119 of biological systems, 117–20, 122 of genomes, 118, 156 of technological complexity, 127, 137–38 evolutionary computation, 82–84, 213 exceptions, see edge cases; outliers Facebook, 98, 189 failure, cost of, 48–50 Fairfax, Nathanael, 111–12, 113, 140 fear, as response to technological complexity, 5, 7, 154–55, 156, 165 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Y2K bug and, 37 feedback, 14–15, 79, 135 Felsenstein, Lee, 21 Fermi, Enrico, 109 Feynman, Richard, 9, 11 field biologists, 122 for complex technologies, 123, 126, 127, 132 financial sector: interaction in, 126 interconnectivity of, 62, 64 see also stock market systems Firthian linguistics, 206 Flash Crash (2010), 25 Fleming, Alexander, 124 Flood, Mark, 61, 85 Foote, Brian, 201 Fortran, 39 fractals, 60, 61, 136 Frederick the Great, king of Prussia, 89 fruit flies, 109–10 “Funes the Memorious” (Borges), 76–77, 131 Galaga, bug in, 95–96, 97, 216–17 Gall, John, 157–58, 167, 227 game theory, 210 garden path sentences, 74–75 generalists, 93 combination of physics and biological thinking in, 142–43, 146 education of, 144, 145 explosion of knowledge and, 142–49 specialists and, 146 as T-shaped individuals, 143–44, 146 see also Renaissance man generalization, in biological thinking, 131–32 genomes, 109, 128 accretion in, 156 evolution of, 118, 156 legacy code (junk) in, 118, 119–20, 222 mutations in, 120 RNAi and, 123–24 Gibson, William, 176 Gingold, Chaim, 162–63 Girl Scouts, 144–45 glitches, see unexpected behavior Gmail, crash of, 103 Gödel, Kurt, 175 “good enough,” 27, 42, 118, 119 Goodenough, Oliver, 61, 85 Google, 32, 59, 98, 104–5 data centers of, 81–82, 103, 189 Google Docs, 32 Google Maps, 205 Google Translate, 57 GOTO command, 44–45, 81 grammar, 54, 57–58 gravitation, Newton’s law of, 113 greeblies, 130–31 Greek philosophy, 138–40, 151 Gresham College, 89 Guide of the Perplexed, The (Maimonides), 151 Haldane, J.


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Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress by Steven Pinker

3D printing, access to a mobile phone, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, Arthur Eddington, artificial general intelligence, availability heuristic, Ayatollah Khomeini, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Black Swan, Bonfire of the Vanities, business cycle, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, clean water, clockwork universe, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, conceptual framework, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, dark matter, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, distributed generation, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Doomsday Clock, double helix, effective altruism, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, end world poverty, endogenous growth, energy transition, European colonialism, experimental subject, Exxon Valdez, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, first-past-the-post, Flynn Effect, food miles, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, frictionless, frictionless market, germ theory of disease, Gini coefficient, Hans Rosling, hedonic treadmill, helicopter parent, Hobbesian trap, humanitarian revolution, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of writing, Jaron Lanier, Joan Didion, job automation, Johannes Kepler, John Snow's cholera map, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, knowledge economy, l'esprit de l'escalier, Laplace demon, life extension, long peace, longitudinal study, Louis Pasteur, Martin Wolf, mass incarceration, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, minimum wage unemployment, moral hazard, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Nate Silver, Nathan Meyer Rothschild: antibiotics, Nelson Mandela, New Journalism, Norman Mailer, nuclear winter, obamacare, open economy, Paul Graham, peak oil, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, precision agriculture, prediction markets, purchasing power parity, Ralph Nader, randomized controlled trial, Ray Kurzweil, rent control, Republic of Letters, Richard Feynman, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Rodney Brooks, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Rory Sutherland, Saturday Night Live, science of happiness, Scientific racism, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Simon Kuznets, Skype, smart grid, sovereign wealth fund, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, supervolcano, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, total factor productivity, union organizing, universal basic income, University of East Anglia, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, women in the workforce, working poor, World Values Survey, Y2K

And these were the hardheaded predictions from tech-savvy authorities (such as President Bill Clinton, who warned the nation, “I want to stress the urgency of the challenge. This is not one of the summer movies where you can close your eyes during the scary part”). Cultural pessimists saw the Y2K bug as comeuppance for enthralling our civilization to technology. Among religious thinkers, the numerological link to Christian millennialism was irresistible. The Reverend Jerry Falwell declared, “I believe that Y2K may be God’s instrument to shake this nation, humble this nation, awaken this nation and from this nation start revival that spreads the face of the earth before the Rapture of the Church.” A hundred billion dollars was spent worldwide on reprogramming software for Y2K Readiness, a challenge that was likened to replacing every bolt in every bridge in the world. As a former assembly language programmer I was skeptical of the doomsday scenarios, and fortuitously I was in New Zealand, the first country to welcome the new millennium, at the fateful moment.

Sure enough, at 12:00 A.M. on January 1, nothing happened (as I quickly reassured family members back home on a fully functioning telephone). The Y2K reprogrammers, like the elephant-repellent salesman, took credit for averting disaster, but many countries and small businesses had taken their chances without any Y2K preparation, and they had no problems either. Though some software needed updating (one program on my laptop displayed “January 1, 19100”), it turned out that very few programs, particularly those embedded in machines, had both contained the bug and performed furious arithmetic on the current year. The threat turned out to be barely more serious than the lettering on the sidewalk prophet’s sandwich board. The Great Y2K Panic does not mean that all warnings of potential catastrophes are false alarms, but it reminds us that we are vulnerable to techno-apocalyptic delusions

And all those options add up to the overarching option that they failed to create, namely that of forming a scientific and technological civilization like ours. Traditions of criticism. An Enlightenment.18 * * * Prominent among the existential risks that supposedly threaten the future of humanity is a 21st-century version of the Y2K bug. This is the danger that we will be subjugated, intentionally or accidentally, by artificial intelligence (AI), a disaster sometimes called the Robopocalypse and commonly illustrated with stills from the Terminator movies. As with Y2K, some smart people take it seriously. Elon Musk, whose company makes artificially intelligent self-driving cars, called the technology “more dangerous than nukes.” Stephen Hawking, speaking through his artificially intelligent synthesizer, warned that it could “spell the end of the human race.”19 But among the smart people who aren’t losing sleep are most experts in artificial intelligence and most experts in human intelligence.20 The Robopocalypse is based on a muzzy conception of intelligence that owes more to the Great Chain of Being and a Nietzschean will to power than to a modern scientific understanding.21 In this conception, intelligence is an all-powerful, wish-granting potion that agents possess in different amounts.


Global Catastrophic Risks by Nick Bostrom, Milan M. Cirkovic

affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, anthropic principle, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, availability heuristic, Bill Joy: nanobots, Black Swan, carbon-based life, cognitive bias, complexity theory, computer age, coronavirus, corporate governance, cosmic microwave background, cosmological constant, cosmological principle, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, death of newspapers, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, distributed generation, Doomsday Clock, Drosophila, endogenous growth, Ernest Rutherford, failed state, feminist movement, framing effect, friendly AI, Georg Cantor, global pandemic, global village, Gödel, Escher, Bach, hindsight bias, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, Kevin Kelly, Kuiper Belt, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, means of production, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, millennium bug, mutually assured destruction, nuclear winter, P = NP, peak oil, phenotype, planetary scale, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, reversible computing, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, scientific worldview, Singularitarianism, social intelligence, South China Sea, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supervolcano, technological singularity, technoutopianism, The Coming Technological Singularity, Tunguska event, twin studies, uranium enrichment, Vernor Vinge, War on Poverty, Westphalian system, Y2K

Combined with the imagined significance of the turn of the Millennium, Christian millennialists saw the crisis as a portent of the EndTimes (Schaefer, 2004), and secular apocalyptics bought emergency generators, guns and food in anticipation of a prolonged social collapse (CNN, 1 998; Kellner, 1 999; Tapia, 2003) . Some anti-technology Y2K apocalyptics argued for widespread technological relinquishment - getting off the grid and returning to a nineteenth century lifestyle. The date 1 January 2000 was as unremarkable as all predicted millennia! dates have been, but in this case, many analysts believe potential catastrophes were averted due to the proactive action from governments, corporations, and individual consumers ( S pecial Committee on the Year 2000 Technology Problem, 2000), motivated in part by millennia! anxieties. Although the necessity and economic effects of pre-Y2K investments in information technology modernization remain controversial, some subsequent economic and productivity gains were probably accrued (Kliesen, 2003) . Althoughthe size and cost of the Y2K preparations may not have been optimal, the case is still one of proactive policy and technological innovation driven in part by millennialjapocalyptic anxiety.

Messianic Revolution: Radical Religious Politics to the End of the Second Millennium (New York: Hill and Wang). Kellner, M .A. ( 1999) . Y2K: Apocalypse or Opportunity? (Wheaton Illinois: Harold Shaw Publications). Kelly, K. (2007). The Maes-Garreau Point. The Technium, March 14. http:(fwww .kk.orgf thetechniumfarchivesf2007 f03 fthe_maesgarreau.php King, M . L. (1950). The Christian Pertinence of Eschatological Hope. http:f I www .stanford.edufgroupfKingfpublicationsfpapersfvol1 f5002 1 5-The_Christian_ Pertinence_of_EschatologicaLHope.htrn Klaw, S. (1 993). Without Sin: The Life and Death of the Oneida Community (New York: Allen Lane, Penguin Press). Kliesen, K.L. (2003). Was Y2K behind the business investment boom and bust? Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, January: 31-42. Kunstler, J . H . (2006).

The Religious Movements Homepage Project at the University of Virginia. http:/ jreligiousmovements.lib.virginia.edujnrmsjmillenniumjviolence.html 90 Global catastrophic risks Special Committee on the Year 2000 Technology Problem. (2000). Y2K Aftermath Crisis Averted: Final Committee Report. February 2000. U . S . Senate. Stock, G. ( 1 993). Metaman: The Merging of Humans and Machines into a Global Superorganism (New York: Simon & Schuster). Stone, J . ( 1 985). Seeking enlightenment in the last age: Mappo Thought in Kamakura Buddhism. Eastern Buddhist, 1 8 ( 1 ) , 28-56. Tapia, A.H. (2003). Technomillennialism: a subcultural response to the technological threat of Y2K. Sci., Technol. Human Values, 28(4) , 483-5 1 2 . Teilhard d e Chardin, P. 1955. The Phenomenon of Man. (New York: Harper & Row) . Thompson, D. ( 1 997). The End of Time: Faith and Fear in the Shadow of the Millennium ( Hanover, N H : University Press of New England) .


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The Wikipedia Revolution: How a Bunch of Nobodies Created the World's Greatest Encyclopedia by Andrew Lih

Albert Einstein, AltaVista, barriers to entry, Benjamin Mako Hill, c2.com, Cass Sunstein, citation needed, crowdsourcing, Debian, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Hacker Ethic, HyperCard, index card, Jane Jacobs, Jason Scott: textfiles.com, jimmy wales, Kickstarter, Marshall McLuhan, Mitch Kapor, Network effects, optical character recognition, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Stallman, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, slashdot, social software, Steve Jobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wisdom of Crowds, urban planning, urban renewal, Vannevar Bush, wikimedia commons, Y2K

He took on the specter of the most famous non-crisis crisis in modern times: the Y2K bug. In A_Nupedia_33 the late 1990s, there was a panic in the information industry about the millions of lines of computer code in various corners of the world that might not be ready for the flip from ’99 to ’00. Computer code that compared years would suddenly find that 00 was less than 99, and markets would collapse, insurance would be gone, banks would go haywire. Or so the theory went. As companies scrambled to disarm possible ticking time bombs in their computer code, the news reports were getting more urgent. Even the experts didn’t know how big a problem it might be. Seizing on interest in this phenomenon, Sanger, with a friend, created a Web site called Sanger & Shannon’s Review of Y2K News Reports. It attempted to aggregate all the reporting on the issue in a digested form.

It attempted to aggregate all the reporting on the issue in a digested form. From 1998 to 2000, the Web site gained a healthy following. The good news at the time was that Sanger was gaining a great reputation for it and attracting loyal readers and followers. The bad news was that if the world did not melt down in a computer-induced Armageddon, he would be irrelevant after January 1, 2000. Well, the world did not implode. In fact, Y2K was one of the biggest nonevents in the history of computing. Within weeks, Larry was looking for something else to do. Shortly after New Year’s Day 2000, Larry sent a private email to a group of acquaintances for feedback on a new “blog” project he had in mind. Wales was one of those recipients, but he had something else in mind for the young philosophy student. “To my great surprise, Jimmy replied to my email describing his idea of a free encyclopedia, and asking if I might be interested in leading the project,” said Sanger.

., 43, 85, 172–73, 175 Nupedia-L, 63 Reagle, Joseph, 82, 96, 112 Nupedia Open Content License, 35, 72 Rec.food.chocolate, 84–85 RickK, 120, 185–88 rings, Web site, 23, 31 objectivism, 32, 36–37 robots, software, 88, 99–106, 145, 147, OCR (optical character recognition), 35 177, 179 Open Directory Project (ODP), 30–31, Rosenfeld, Jeremy, 45 33, 35 Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 15 Ota, Takashi, 146 Russell, Bertrand, 13, 81 Oxford English Dictionary (OED), 70–72 Russian language, 152 peer production, 108–9 Sandbox, 97, 115 Pellegrini, Mark (Raul654), 180–81 Sanger, Larry, 6–7, 32–34, 36–38, Perl, 56, 67, 101, 140 40–41, 43–45, 61–65, 67, 88, 89, Peul language, 158 115, 184, 202, 210–11 phantom authority, 175–76 boldness directive and, 91, 113 Philological Society, 70 Citizendium project of, 190, 211–12 PHP, 74, 101 Essjay and, 197 Pike, Rob, 144 memoir of, 174, 190, 225 piranha effect, 83, 106, 109, 113, 120 resignation from Wikipedia, 174–75, Plautus Satire, 181 210 Pliny the Elder, 15 on rules, 76, 112 Poe, Marshall, 171 Spanish Wikipedia and, 9, 136–38 Polish Wikipedia, 146, 147 trolls and, 170–75, 189–90 Popular Science, 126 Wikipedia license and, 72 Portland Pattern Repository, 59 Y2K bug and, 32–33 Portuguese language, 136 San Jose Mercury News, 126 PostScript, 52 Schechter, Danny, 8–9 “Potato chip” article, 136 Schiff, Stacy, 196 Professor and the Madman, The Schlossberg, Edwin, 46 (Winchester), 70, 71 schools, 177–78 Project Gutenberg, 35 Scott, Jason, 131, 189 public domain content, 26, 111 search engines, 11, 22, 34 Pupek, Dan, 58 Google, see Google Seigenthaler, John, 9–10, 191–94, 200, 220 Quickpolls, 126–27 Senegal, 158 Quiz Show, 13 Serbian Wikipedia, 155–56 Index_243 servers, 77–79, 191 Tagalog language, 160 Sethilys (Seth Anthony), 106–11 Taiwan, 150, 151, 154 Shah, Sunir, 59–60, 64 “Talossan language” article, 120 Shaw, George Bernard, 135 Tamil language, 160 Shell, Tim, 21–22, 32, 36, 66, 174, Tawker, 177, 179, 186 184 Tektronix, 46, 47, 50, 55, 56 sidewalks, 96–97 termites, 82 Sieradski, Daniel, 204 Thompson, Ken, 143–44 Signpost, 200 Time, 9, 13 Silsor, 186 Torvalds, Linus, 28–29, 30, 173, 175 Sinitic languages, 159 Tower of Babel, 133–34 see also China tragedy of the commons, 223 Skrenta, Rich, 23, 30 Trench, Chenevix, 70 Slashdot, 67–69, 73, 76, 88, 205, trolls, 170–76, 179, 186, 187, 189–90 207, 216 Truel, Bob, 23, 30 Sanger’s memoir for, 174, 190, 225 2channel, 145 Sneakernet, 50 Snow, Michael, 206–7 Socialtext, 207 “U,” article on, 64 sock puppets, 128, 178–79 Unicode, 142, 144 software, open-source, 5, 23–28, 30, 35, UTF-8, 144–45 62, 67, 79, 216 UTF-32, 142, 143 design patterns and, 55, 59 UNIX, 27, 30–31, 54, 56, 143 Linux, 28–30, 56, 108, 140, 143, 173, Unregistered Words Committee, 70 216, 228 urban planning, 96–97 software robots, 88, 99–106, 145, 147, URL (Uniform Resource Locator), 53, 54 177, 179 USA Today, 9, 191, 220 Souren, Kasper, 158 UseModWiki, 61–63, 66, 73–74, 140–41 South Africa, 157–58 Usenet, 35, 83–88, 114, 170, 190, 223 spam, 11, 87, 220 Usenet Moderation Project (Usemod), 62 Spanish Wikipedia, 9, 136–39, 175, 183, USWeb, 211 215, 226 squid servers, 77–79 Stallman, Richard, 23–32, 74, 86, 217 vandalism: GNU Free Documentation License of, on LA Times Wikitorial, 207–8 72–73, 211–12 on Wikipedia, 6, 93, 95, 125, 128, GNU General Public License of, 27, 72 176–79, 181, 184–88, 194, 195, GNU Manifesto of, 26 202, 220, 227 GNUpedia of, 79 Van Doren, Charles, 13–14 Steele, Guy, 86 verein, 147 Stevertigo, 184 VeryVerily, 128 stigmergy, 82, 89, 92, 109 Vibber, Brion, 76 Sun Microsystems, 23, 27, 29–30, 56 Viola, 54 Sun Tzu, 169 ViolaWWW, 54–55 Swedish language, 140, 152 Voltaire, 15 244_Index WAIS, 34, 53 Wik, 123–25, 170, 180 Wales, Christine, 20–21, 22, 139 Wikia, 196, 197 Wales, Doris, 18, 19 Wiki Base, 62 Wales, Jimmy, 1, 8, 9, 18–22, 44, 76, Wikibooks, 216 88, 115, 131, 184, 196, 213, 215, Wikimania, 1–3, 8, 146, 147–48 220 WikiMarkup, 90 administrators and, 94, 185 Wikimedia Commons, 216 background of, 18–19 Wikimedia Foundation, 146, 157, 183–84, at Chicago Options Associates, 20, 196, 199, 213–15, 225–26, 227 21, 22 Wikipedia: Cunctator essay and, 172 administrators of, 67, 93–96, 119, 121, and deletion of articles, 120 125, 127, 148, 178, 185–86, dispute resolution and, 179–80, 181, 195–96, 224–25 223 advertising and, 9, 11, 136–38, 215, Essjay and, 197, 199 226 languages and, 139, 140, 157–58 amateurs and professionals in, 225 neutrality policy and, 6, 7, 113 Arbitration Committee of, 180–81, 184, objectivism and, 32, 36–37 197, 223 Nupedia and, 32–35, 41, 43–45, “assume good faith” policy in, 114, 187, 61–63 195, 200 on piranha effect, 83 blocking of people from, 93 role of, in Wikipedia community, 174–76, boldness directive in, 8, 91, 102, 179–80, 223 113–14, 115, 122, 221 Seigenthaler incident and, 192, 194 categories in, 97–98, 221 Spanish Wikipedia and, 137, 175 “checkuser” privilege in, 179, 196, 199 Stallman and, 30–32 database for, 73–74, 77, 78, 94 three revert rule and, 127–28 discussions in, 7–8, 65–66, 75–76, 89, Wikimania and, 146 121–22 Wikipedia license and, 72 DMOZ as inspiration for, 23 Wikitorials and, 206–7 five pillars of, 113, 216 Wales, Jimmy, Sr., 18 future of, 213–17, 219–29 Wall Street Journal, 126 growth of, 4, 9, 10, 77, 88–89, 95–97, “War and Consequences” Wikitorial, 99–100, 126, 184, 215, 219, 220 206–7 how it works, 90–96 wasps, 82 influence of, 201–212 Weatherly, Keith, 106 launch of, 64, 69, 139, 171 Web browsers, 51–55 legal issues and, 94, 111, 186, 191–92, Weblogs Inc., 215 227; see also copyright; libel WebShare, 209 linking in, 66–67, 73 Webster, Noah, 70, 133 mailing list for, 89, 95 Web 2.0, 68, 111, 114, 201 main community namespace in, 76 Wei, Pei-Yan, 54–55 main page of, 95 Weinstock, Steven, 202–3 MeatballWiki and, 60, 114, 119, 187–88 “Why Wikipedia Must Jettison Its mediation of disputes in, 180, 181, 195 Anti-Elitism” (Sanger), 189–90 meta pages in, 91 Index_245 name of, 45 “diff” function and, 74, 75, 93, 99 namespaces in, 75–76 edit histories of, 64–65, 71, 82, 91–93 number of editors in, 95–96 editing of, 3–4, 6, 38, 64–66, 69, 73, Nupedia and, 64–65, 88, 136, 171, 172 88, 114–15, 131, 194 openness of, 5–6, 9 edit wars and, 95, 122–31, 136, 146 origins of, 43–60 eventualism and, 120–21, 129, 159 policies and rules of, 76, 112–14, first written, 64 127–28, 170, 171, 192, 221, flagged revisions of, 148–49, 215–16, 224–25 227 popularity of, 4 inclusion of, 115–21 Quickpolls in, 126–27 inverted pyramid formula for, 90 Recent Changes page in, 64–65, 82, license covering content of, 72–73, 98, 104, 109, 176–77 211–12 schools and, 177–78 locking of, 95 servers for, 77–79, 191 maps in, 107, 109–11 Slashdot and, 69, 73, 76, 88 neutral point of view in, 6–7, 82, 89, 111, sock puppets and, 128, 178–79 112–13, 117, 140, 174, 203–4, 217, SOFIXIT directive in, 114–15, 122, 221 228 software robots and, 88, 99–106, 145, news and, 7 147, 177, 179 original research and, 112–13, 117, 174 spam and self-promotion on, 11, 220 protection and semi-protection of, 194, talk pages in, 75–76, 89, 93, 98 216 templates in, 97–98, 113, 221 reverts and, 125, 127–28 trolls and, 170–76, 179, 186, 187, single versions of, 6 189–90 spelling mistakes in, 104–5 user pages in, 76, 89 stability of, 227–28 vandalism and, 6, 93, 95, 125, 128, stub, 92, 97, 101, 104, 148 176–79, 181, 184–88, 194, 195, talk pages for, 75–76, 89, 93, 98 202, 220, 227 test edits of, 176 watchlists in, 74, 82, 98–99, 109 “undo” function and, 93 wiki markup language for, 221–22 uneven development of, 220 wiki software for, 64–67, 73, 77, 90, 93, unusual, 92, 117–18 140–41, 216 verifiability and, 112–13, 117 Wikipedia articles: watchlists for, 74, 82, 98–99, 109 accuracy of, 10, 72, 188–89, 194, 208 Wikipedia community, 7–8, 81–132, 174, attempts to influence, 11–12 175, 183–200, 215–17, 222–23 biographies of living persons, 192, Essjay controversy and, 194–200 220–21 Missing Wikipedians page and, 184–85, census data in, 100–104, 106 188 citations in, 113 partitioning of, 223 consensus and, 7, 94, 95, 119–20, 122, Seigenthaler incident and, 9–10, 222–23 191–94, 220 consistency among, 213 stress in, 184 creation of, 90–93, 130–31, 188–89 trolls and, 170 deletion of, 93–94, 96, 119–21, 174 Wales’s role in, 174–76, 179–80, 223 246_Index Wikipedia international editions, 12, 77, Wikitorials, 205–8 100, 131–32, 133–67 Wikiversity, 216 African, 157–58 WikiWikiWeb, 44–45, 58–60, 61, 62 Chinese, 10, 141–44, 146, 150–55 Willy on Wheels (WoW), 178–79 encoding languages for, 140–45 Winchester, Simon, 70, 71 French, 83, 139, 146, 147 Wizards of OS conference, 211 German, 11, 139, 140, 147–49, 215, Wolof language, 158 220, 227 Wool, Danny, 3, 158, 199 Japanese, 139, 140, 141–42, 144, World Book, 16–19 145–47 World Is Flat, The (Friedman), 11 Kazakh, 155–57 World Wide Web, 34, 35, 47, 51–55 links to, 134–35, 140 Web 2.0, 68, 111, 114, 201 list of languages by size, 160–67 WYSIWYG, 222 Serbian, 155–56 Spanish, 9, 136–39, 175, 183, 215, 226 Yahoo, 4, 22, 23, 30, 191, 214 Wikipedia Watch, 192 “Year zero” article, 117 Wikipedia Weekly, 225 Yeats, William Butler, 183 wikis, 44, 51 Yongle encyclopedia, 15 Cunningham’s creation of, 2, 4, 56–60, “You have two cows” article, 118 62, 65–66, 90 YouTube, 58 MeatballWiki, 59–60, 114, 119, 175, Y2K bug, 32–33 187–88 Nupedia and, 61–65 Wikisource, 216 ZhengZhu, 152–57 About the Author Andrew Lih was an academic for ten years at Columbia University and Hong Kong University in new media and journalism.


pages: 383 words: 105,021

Dark Territory: The Secret History of Cyber War by Fred Kaplan

Cass Sunstein, computer age, data acquisition, drone strike, dumpster diving, Edward Snowden, game design, hiring and firing, index card, Internet of things, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, John von Neumann, kremlinology, Mikhail Gorbachev, millennium bug, national security letter, packet switching, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Stuxnet, uranium enrichment, Y2K, zero day

But the corporate executives made clear that this was a one-time deal; once the Y2K problem was solved, the center would be dismantled. Clarke wanted to make the arrangement permanent, to turn the Y2K center into the agency that handled cyber threats. Sometime earlier, he’d made no secret of his desire to impose mandatory requirements on cyber security for critical infrastructure, knowing that the private companies wouldn’t voluntarily spend the money to take the necessary actions. But Clinton’s economic advisers strenuously opposed the idea, arguing that regulations would distort the free market and impede innovation. Clinton agreed; Clarke backed down. Now he was carving a back door, seeking to establish government control through a revamped version of the Y2K center. That was his agenda in taking over the drafting of the presidential directive—and the companies weren’t buying it.

They’d sensed the same threat when they met with the Marsh Commission: here was an Air Force general—and, though retired, he referred to himself as General Marsh—laying down the rules on what they must do, as if they were enlisted men. And now here was Dick Clarke, writing under the president’s signature, trying to lay down the law. For several months now, these same companies had been working in concert with Washington, under its guidelines, to solve the Y2K crisis. This crisis—also known as the Millennium Bug—emerged when someone realized that some of the government’s most vital computer programs had encoded years (dates of birth, dates of retirement, payroll periods, and so forth) by their last two digits: 1995 as “95,” 1996 as “96,” and so forth. When the calendar flipped to 2000, the computers would read it as “00,” and the fear was that they’d interpret it as the year 1900, at which point, all of a sudden, such programs as Social Security and Medicare would screech to a halt: the people who’d been receiving checks would be deemed ineligible because, as far as the computers could tell, they hadn’t yet been born.

Much grumbling ensued, but then, on January 24, 2000, ten weeks into Hayden’s campaign, an alarm bell went off: the NSA’s main computer system crashed—and stayed crashed for seventy-two hours. The computer was still storing intelligence that the field stations were gathering from all over the world, but no one at Fort Meade could gain access to it. Raw intelligence—unsifted, unprocessed, unanalyzed—was all but useless; for three days, the NSA was, in effect, shut down. At first, some suspected sabotage or a delayed effect of Y2K. But the in-house tech crews quickly concluded that the computer had simply been overloaded; and the damage was so severe that they’d have to reconstruct the data and programs after it came back online. The grumbling about Hayden ceased. If anyone had doubted that big changes were necessary, there was no doubt now. Another criticism in the executives’ report was that the SIGINT Directorate stovepiped its data by geography—one group looked at signals from the former Soviet Union, another from the Middle East, another from Asia—whereas, out in the real world, all communications passed through the same network.


pages: 359 words: 115,701

Educated by Tara Westover

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, hiring and firing, Mason jar, obamacare, Rosa Parks, white picket fence, Y2K

Not since I was five, and the Weavers were under siege, had he been so certain that the Days of Abomination were upon us. Dad called it Y2K. On January 1, he said, computer systems all over the world would fail. There would be no electricity, no telephones. All would sink into chaos, and this would usher in the Second Coming of Christ. “How do you know the day?” I asked. Dad said that the Government had programmed the computers with a six-digit calendar, which meant the year had only two digits. “When nine-nine becomes oh-oh,” he said, “the computers won’t know what year it is. They’ll shut down.” “Can’t they fix it?” “Nope, can’t be done,” Dad said. “Man trusted his own strength, and his strength was weak.” At church, Dad warned everyone about Y2K. He advised Papa Jay to get strong locks for his gas station, and maybe some defensive weaponry.

His hat was tipped back on his head, and he wore a brilliant smile. “We’ll be the only ones with fuel when The End comes,” he said. “We’ll be driving when everyone else is hotfooting it. We’ll even make a run down to Utah, to fetch Tyler.” * * * — I HAD REHEARSALS MOST NIGHTS at the Worm Creek Opera House, a dilapidated theater near the only stoplight in town. The play was another world. Nobody talked about Y2K. The interactions between people at Worm Creek were not at all what I was used to in my family. Of course I’d spent time with people outside my family, but they were like us: women who’d hired Mother to midwife their babies, or who came to her for herbs because they didn’t believe in the Medical Establishment. I had a single friend, named Jessica. A few years before, Dad had convinced her parents, Rob and Diane, that public schools were little more than Government propaganda programs, and since then they had kept her at home.

“You should take this one,” she said, passing me a navy dress with white braided cords arranged across the bodice. “Grandma sewed this detailing.” I took the dress, along with another made of red velvet collared with white lace, and Mother and I drove home. The play opened a week later. Dad was in the front row. When the performance ended, he marched right to the box office and bought tickets for the next night. It was all he talked about that Sunday in church. Not doctors, or the Illuminati, or Y2K. Just the play over in town, where his youngest daughter was singing the lead. Dad didn’t stop me from auditioning for the next play, or the one after that, even though he worried about me spending so much time away from home. “There’s no telling what kind of cavorting takes place in that theater,” he said. “It’s probably a den of adulterers and fornicators.” When the director of the next play got divorced, it confirmed Dad’s suspicions.


pages: 405 words: 117,219

In Our Own Image: Savior or Destroyer? The History and Future of Artificial Intelligence by George Zarkadakis

3D printing, Ada Lovelace, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, animal electricity, anthropic principle, Asperger Syndrome, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, bioinformatics, British Empire, business process, carbon-based life, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, continuous integration, Conway's Game of Life, cosmological principle, dark matter, dematerialisation, double helix, Douglas Hofstadter, Edward Snowden, epigenetics, Flash crash, Google Glasses, Gödel, Escher, Bach, income inequality, index card, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, job automation, John von Neumann, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Kickstarter, liberal capitalism, lifelogging, millennium bug, Moravec's paradox, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, off grid, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, packet switching, pattern recognition, Paul Erdős, post-industrial society, prediction markets, Ray Kurzweil, Rodney Brooks, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, speech recognition, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, strong AI, technological singularity, The Coming Technological Singularity, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, theory of mind, Turing complete, Turing machine, Turing test, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Vernor Vinge, Von Neumann architecture, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Y2K

But no one was really certain about the outcome until the safe passing of the so-called ‘event horizon’ of midnight on 31 December, 1999. Y2K was the first time that computer science borrowed terminology from quantum cosmology. An ‘event horizon’ describes a boundary separating our world of classical Newtonian physics from the unknown consequences of falling into a black hole. Crossing the event horizon, one falls into a ‘singularity‘, which basically means a place and a time where the known laws of nature cease to hold. Even after the year 2000, apocalyptic scenarios involving the crossing of an ‘event horizon’ and the arrival at a ‘singularity’ would come to the fore again, this time substituting ‘Y2K’ with ‘AI’. This is the infamous ‘AI Singularity’, which warns of the unpredictable and potentially disastrous effects of true Artificial Intelligence actually appearing (and to which I will return in more detail in the next chapter).

Although the computer servers that do all the hard work behind the information revolution may not physically eat us, like the Morlocks, our increasing dependency on them is definitely a matter of concern. The first warning that something was not exactly right with our increasing dependency on computers came only ten years after the invention of the World Wide Web. As clocks ticked down the last seconds of 31 December 1999, many believed that the world was witnessing the countdown to an apocalypse. The ‘Y2K bug’ had become an obsession for many during the last few years of the twentieth century. Their anxiety had its roots in the legacy of computer systems programmed in previous decades, which did not account for the fact that, starting in the year 2000, counting years would have to be zeroed. It had been the traditional practice amongst programmers to note years with two digit numbers, and to code calculations on that basis.

This is the infamous ‘AI Singularity’, which warns of the unpredictable and potentially disastrous effects of true Artificial Intelligence actually appearing (and to which I will return in more detail in the next chapter). Ten years after the feared Y2K crisis, another incident reminded us how the dependence of humanity’s vital institutions on automated computer technology can potentially cause a global catastrophe. Early in the afternoon of Thursday, 6 May 2010 the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by 6 per cent in a matter of minutes. Not only that, but all kinds of crazy things started happening with stock prices: some fell as low as one cent and others shot through the roof at US$100,000 apiece with no obvious cause. In fifteen nail-biting minutes almost US$1 trillion of market capitalisation was wiped out. Yet five minutes later the Dow was back to normal, as if nothing had happened.


Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America by Matt Taibbi

addicted to oil, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Bernie Sanders, Bretton Woods, buy and hold, carried interest, clean water, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, computerized trading, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, David Brooks, desegregation, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, financial innovation, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, illegal immigration, interest rate swap, laissez-faire capitalism, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, medical malpractice, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, obamacare, passive investing, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, quantitative easing, reserve currency, Ronald Reagan, Sergey Aleynikov, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, too big to fail, trickle-down economics, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

But instead of letting nature take its course, Greenspan came to the rescue every time some juiced-up band of Wall Street greedheads drove their portfolios into a tree. Greenspan was even dumb enough to take the Y2K scare seriously, flooding the markets with money in anticipation of a systemwide computer malfunction that, of course, never materialized. We can calculate how much money Greenspan dumped into the economy in advance of Y2K; between September 20 and November 10, 1999, the Fed printed about $147 billion extra and pumped it into the economy. “The crucial issue … is to recognize that we have a Y2K problem,” he said at the century’s final FOMC meeting. “It is a problem about which we don’t want to become complacent.” Again, all of these rate cuts and injections—in response to LTCM, the emerging markets crash, and Y2K—were undertaken in the middle of a raging stock market bubble, making his crisis strategy somewhat like trying to put out a forest fire with napalm.

After a few (relatively) small-scale disasters involving derivatives of the sort that would eventually nearly destroy the universe in 2008, Greenspan told Congress that the risks involved with derivatives were “negligible,” testimony that was a key reason the government left the derivatives market unregulated. His misreading of the tech bubble of the late nineties is legendary (more on that later); he also fell completely for the Y2K scare and at one point early in the George W. Bush presidency actually worried aloud that the national debt might be repaid too quickly. But it wasn’t Greenspan’s economic skill that got him to the top banker job. Instead, it was his skill as a politician. During Ronald Reagan’s first and second terms, while the irritatingly independent Paul Volcker sat on the Fed throne, Greenspan was quietly working the refs, attending as many White House functions as he could.


Industry 4.0: The Industrial Internet of Things by Alasdair Gilchrist

3D printing, additive manufacturing, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, business intelligence, business process, chief data officer, cloud computing, connected car, cyber-physical system, deindustrialization, DevOps, digital twin, fault tolerance, global value chain, Google Glasses, hiring and firing, industrial robot, inflight wifi, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, inventory management, job automation, low cost airline, low skilled workers, microservices, millennium bug, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, platform as a service, pre–internet, race to the bottom, RFID, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, smart transportation, software as a service, stealth mode startup, supply-chain management, trade route, undersea cable, web application, WebRTC, Y2K

However, these threats escalated over the mid-to-late 1990s and reach their zenith with the mass-hysteria conjured up over the dreaded Millennium Bug (Y2K). This specific threat was not a virus, a worm, or even a deliberate hack. It was simply the recognition of the fact that programmers in the 70s and 80s used two digits to represent the year in their code. For example, the 19 in 1976 programmers took for granted, so they represented 1976 simply as 76 and they never thought twice about the date field format changing in the year 2000. Industry 4.0 The Y2K bug, as it became popularly known, caused near panic within businesses and governments, with mass scale Y2K initiative set up an all software and applications had to be checked and verified as being Y2K compliant; this was a truly massive task. The fear within industry is connecting systems and networks that have never previously been connected to the Internet or even the outside world will bring down on industry similar woes as befell IT back in 2000.

Gilchrist, Industry 4.0, DOI 10.1007/978-1-4842-2047-4 246 Index Constrained application protocol (CoAP), 128 advanced analytics, 84 queries, 83 storage, persistence, and retrieval serves, 83 Control area network (CAN), 181 Customers’ premise equipment (CPE), 42 Cyber-physical system (CPS), 36 D Data bus, 139 Data distribution service (DDS), 138 Data management, 82 Delay tolerant networks (DTN), 139 Distributed component object model (DCOM), 148 Dynamic name server (DNS), 127 E Epidemic technique, 141 Ethernet, 120, 127 Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP), 137 F Functional domains, 69 asset management, 71 communication function, 70 control domain, 70 executor, 71 modeling data, 71 G Giraff, 15 Google Glass, 25 H Human machine interface (HMI), 20–21, 45 HVAC system, 131 I, J, K Identity access management (IAM), 191 IIoT architecture architectural topology, 75 data management, 82 IIAF application domain, 75 Business domain, 75 Business viewpoint, 68 functional domains (see Functional domains) information domain, 73 operation domain, 72 stakeholder, 67 usage viewpoint, 68 implementation viewpoint, 75 Industrial Internet IIC, 66 IISs, 66 ISs, 66 M2M, 66 key system characteristics, 79 communication layer functions, 81 connectivity functions, 80 data communications, 79 deliver data, 80 M2M, 65 three-tier topology communication transport layer, 78 connectivity, 78 connectivity framework layer, 78 edge tier, 76 enterprise tier, 76 gateway-mediated edge, 77 platform tier, 76 IIoT middleware architecture, 156 commercial platforms, 160 components, 156 conceptual diagram, 154 connectivity platforms, 157 mobile operators, 158 open source solutions, 160 requirements, 159 IIoT WAN technology 3G/4G/LTE, 164 cable modem, 166 DWDM, 165 free space optics, 166 Index FTTX, 165 internet connectivity, 162 M2M Dash7 protocol, 172 LoRaWAN architecture, 171 LTE cellular technology, 175 MAC/PHY layer, 169 millimeter radio, 176 OSI layers, 169 requirements, 167 RPMA LP-WAN, 173 SigFox, 170 Weightless SIG, 175 Wi-Fi, 174 MPLS, 164 SDH/Sonnet, 163 VSAT, 167 WAN channels, 162 WiMax, 166 xDSL, 163 Industrial Internet 3D printing, 60 augmented reality (AR), 59 Big Data, 52 business value, 55 variety, 54 velocity, 54 veracity, 55 visualizing data, 55 volumes of, data, 53 CAN network, 181 Cloud model, 47 CPS, 35 fog network, 51 ICS, 180 IFE, 182 IP Mobility, 40 M2M learning and artificial intelligence, 56 Miniaturization, 34 Network virtualization, 43 NFV, 42 people vs. automation, 62 remote I/O devices, 34 Russian hackers, 180 SDN, 44 SDN vs. NFV, 45 security CAN bus, 192 Ethernet/IP, 189 IAM, 191 ICS-CERT, 191 IOT network, 183 IP and Ethernet, 184 Modbus, 189 OT network, 183, 187 OT vs. ICS, 185 PCL and DCS, 187–188 physical and behavioral security, 186 ping devices, 185 PLC, 183 Profibus, and Profinet, 189 system level, 190 VHF radio equipment, 192 VLAN network, 189 Y2K bug, 185 smartphones, 45 Ukraine power, 180 Wireless communication technology, 38 Industrial Internet. See Industrial internet of things (IIoT) Industrial operations technology (IOT), 1–2, 183 Industrial internet architecture framework (IIAF), 67 Industrial internet consortium (IIC), 66 Industrial internet of things (IIoT) B2C, 2 Big Data, 3, 5 building’s energy efficiency, 20 business gains, 3 catalysts and precursors adequately skilled and trained staff, 6 innovation, commitment to, 6 security, 7 cloud-computing model, 6 commercial market, 1 consumer market, 1 digital and human workforce, 11 digital twin, 11 green house gas emissions, 19 heath care, 14 Industry 4.0, 2 innovation, 7 installing sensors and actuators, 20 intelligent devices, 8 IOT, 1–2 IOT, disadvantages, 20 247 248 Index Industrial internet of things (IIoT) (cont.)


pages: 59 words: 12,801

The Little Book on CoffeeScript by Alex MacCaw

Firefox, MVC pattern, node package manager, web application, Y2K

In fact, you can also use indentation and new lines instead of comma separation: object1 = {one: 1, two: 2} # Without braces object2 = one: 1, two: 2 # Using new lines instead of commas object3 = one: 1 two: 2 User.create(name: "John Smith") Likewise, arrays can use white space instead of comma separators, although the square brackets ([]) are still required: array1 = [1, 2, 3] array2 = [ 1 2 3 ] array3 = [1,2,3,] As you can see in this example, CoffeeScript has also stripped the trailing comma in array3, another common source of cross-browser errors. Flow Control The convention of optional parentheses continues with CoffeeScript’s if and else keywords: if true == true "We're ok" if true != true then "Panic" # Equivalent to: # (1 > 0) ? "Ok" : "Y2K!" if 1 > 0 then "Ok" else "Y2K!" As you can see above, if the if statement is on one line, you’ll need to use the then keyword so CoffeeScript knows when the block begins. Conditional operators (?:) are not supported; instead you should use a single line if/else statement. CoffeeScript also includes a Ruby idiom of allowing suffixed if statements: alert "It's cold!" if heat < 5 Instead of using the exclamation mark (!)


pages: 464 words: 127,283

Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia by Anthony M. Townsend

1960s counterculture, 4chan, A Pattern Language, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, anti-communist, Apple II, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Burning Man, business process, call centre, carbon footprint, charter city, chief data officer, clean water, cleantech, cloud computing, computer age, congestion charging, connected car, crack epidemic, crowdsourcing, DARPA: Urban Challenge, data acquisition, Deng Xiaoping, digital map, Donald Davies, East Village, Edward Glaeser, game design, garden city movement, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, George Gilder, ghettoisation, global supply chain, Grace Hopper, Haight Ashbury, Hedy Lamarr / George Antheil, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, interchangeable parts, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Jacquard loom, Jane Jacobs, jitney, John Snow's cholera map, Joi Ito, Khan Academy, Kibera, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, load shedding, M-Pesa, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, mobile money, mutually assured destruction, new economy, New Urbanism, Norbert Wiener, Occupy movement, off grid, openstreetmap, packet switching, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Parag Khanna, patent troll, Pearl River Delta, place-making, planetary scale, popular electronics, RFC: Request For Comment, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, social graph, social software, social web, special economic zone, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stuxnet, supply-chain management, technoutopianism, Ted Kaczynski, telepresence, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, too big to fail, trade route, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, undersea cable, Upton Sinclair, uranium enrichment, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, Vannevar Bush, working poor, working-age population, X Prize, Y2K, zero day, Zipcar

Just as the rapid pace of urbanization has revealed shoddy construction practices, most notably in China’s notorious “tofu buildings,” hastily put together smart cities will have technological flaws created by designers’ and builders’ shortcuts. These hasty hacks threaten to make earlier design shortcuts like the Y2K bug seem small in comparison. Stemming from a trick commonly used to save memory in the early days of computing, by recording dates using only the last two digits of the year, Y2K was the biggest bug in history, prompting a worldwide effort to rewrite millions of lines of code in the late 1990s. Over the decades, there were plenty of opportunities to undo Y2K, but thousands of organizations chose to postpone the fix, which ended up costing over $300 billion worldwide when they finally got around to it.12 Bugs in the smart city will be more insidious, living inside lots of critical, interconnected systems.

Transportation Construction Industry Profile (Washington, DC: American Road & Transportation Builders Association, 2010), http://www.artba.org/Economics/Econ-Breakouts/04_EconomicImpactInterruptedService.pdf. 9Quentin Hardy, “Internet Experts Warn of Risks in Ultrafast Networks,” New York Times, November 13, 2011, B3. 10Ellen Ullman, “Op-Ed: Errant Code? It’s Not Just a Bug,” New York Times, last modified August 8, 2012, http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/09/opinion/after-knight-capital-new-code-for-trades.html. 11Charles Perrow, Normal Accidents: Living with High-Risk Technologies (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999), 4. 12Robert L. Mitchell, “Y2K: The good, the bad and the ugly,” Computerworld, last modified December 28, 2009, http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9142555/Y2K_The_good_the_bad_ and_the_crazy?taxonomyId=14. 13David Green, “Computer Glitch Summons Too Many Jurors,” National Public Radio, May 3, 2012, http://www.npr.org/2012/05/03/151919620/computer-glitch-summons-too-many-jurors. 14Wade Roush, “Catastrophe and Control: How Technological Disasters Enhance Democracy,” PhD diss., Program in Science, Technology and Society, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1994, http://hdl.handle.net/1721.1/28134. 15Peter Galison, “War Against the Center,” Grey Room, no. 4 (2001): 26. 16Paul Baran, On Distributed Communications (RAND: Santa Monica, CA, 1964), document no.

., 62 “Web 2.0,” 237 Web start-ups, 240 Weinberger, David, 297 Welter, Volker, 96 West, Geoffrey, 160, 250, 312–15 Western Union, 5 White Oak Plantation, 21 Wiener, Norbert, 75, 77, 277–78 Wi-Fi, 28, 55, 68, 126–34, 154, 195 limitations of, 196 public network for, 217–18 Wikipedia, 200 Wilde, Oscar, 282 Wilson, Fred, 152, 154 wireless networks, 52, 178, 195, 198–99 local area networks of (WLAN), 128 RFID barcode technology in, 318–19 U.S. investment in, 3 Wire, The, 211 Wireless Web, 122 World Bank, 12, 169–71, 178, 189 Apps for Development contest, 201 estimate of global GDP, 30 Worldnet, 36–37 World War I, U.S. postwar period of, 99–100 World War II, 51, 128 World Wildlife Foundation, 30 Wrestling with Moses (Flint), 103–4 Wright, Frank Lloyd, 26 X.25, 109 Y2K bug, 257 Yackinach, Mark, 302 Yahoo, 157 Yale University, 69 YouTube, 115 in Arab Spring, 12 Zakaria, Fareed, 107 Zaragoza, 217–23 Center for Art and Technology in, 219–20, 222–23 “citizen card” for, 221–22 Digital Diamond in, 220 Digital Mile in, 218–22 Digital Water Pavilion in, 220 as “open source city,” 218 Zehnder, Joe, 83–85 “zero-day” attacks, 267–68 Zipcar, 162–63 Zoellick, Robert, 169–70 Copyright Copyright © 2013 by Anthony M.


The America That Reagan Built by J. David Woodard

affirmative action, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, business cycle, colonial rule, Columbine, corporate raider, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, friendly fire, glass ceiling, global village, Gordon Gekko, gun show loophole, income inequality, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, laissez-faire capitalism, late capitalism, Live Aid, Marc Andreessen, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, Neil Kinnock, Nelson Mandela, new economy, postindustrial economy, Ralph Nader, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, Rubik’s Cube, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, stem cell, Ted Kaczynski, The Predators' Ball, trickle-down economics, women in the workforce, Y2K, young professional

With Bill Clinton leaving office, the race was wide open on both sides, but politics that year had to wait on a more pressing issue: the Y2K bug. The plague was forecast to be worse than the Black Death of the 1330s, only it affected machines, not humans. From the 1960s to the late 1980s, a widespread practice developed in all computer software programs to use two digits for representing a year instead of four digits. As the millennium approached, programs were changed to correct this shortcoming, but the fear was that older software would interpret 00 as 1900 and not 2000, ruining all records and data going back for decades. This was a major problem for the finance industry, but it also threatened businesses like utilities, banking, manufacturing, telecommunications, and the airlines. The Y2K bug was a ticking time bomb for all major computer applications, which meant it was of concern to all Americans.

The Y2K bug was a ticking time bomb for all major computer applications, which meant it was of concern to all Americans. The rumor in Washington was that the defense industry was especially vulnerable, but of course no one knew for sure. Companies around the world spent huge sums of money to go through their entire applications, looking for the Y2K bug and fixing it. The news media carried endless stories of people racing around trying to make themselves ‘‘Y2K compliant.’’ In all, the United States spent some $100 billion preparing for the millennium, including substantial amounts by American multinational corporations overseas. The fear was that other countries would be less vigilant about the social disruption from information malfunction. The State Department withdrew hundreds of government employees and family members from Russia and the Ukraine, Belarus, and Moldova because they feared computer problems there.1 The gloom and doom about the year 2000 computer meltdown was exacerbated by apocalyptic paranoia in the society at large.

In Abilene, Texas, a couple caught up in the hysteria predicting the apocalypse took two neighborhood teenagers into the Mexican wilderness as part of a doomsday cult. They lived in isolation in a cave, ate animals, drank water from streams, and went without food for days on end. When the world did not end and the adults came blinking back into reality, a judge sentenced them to jail time.3 The run-up to the 2000 presidential nominations had the surreal quality of the Y2K millennium anxiety. Both nominees were likely to be from the baby boom generation, meaning that their political consciousness was shaped by the Vietnam War, the Watergate scandal, and the Reagan presidency. Democratic gains in the 1998 midterm elections unified them as a party, and the Republican establishment longed for similar accord after Bill Clinton’s two victories. Business prosperity removed the economy as a major issue, freeing the primary voters to focus on personality and leadership.


The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World (Hardback) - Common by Alan Greenspan

"Robert Solow", addicted to oil, air freight, airline deregulation, Albert Einstein, asset-backed security, bank run, Berlin Wall, Bretton Woods, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, call centre, capital controls, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, conceptual framework, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, correlation coefficient, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, cuban missile crisis, currency peg, Deng Xiaoping, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, Doha Development Round, double entry bookkeeping, equity premium, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, financial innovation, financial intermediation, full employment, Gini coefficient, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, income per capita, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, land reform, Long Term Capital Management, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, market bubble, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Nelson Mandela, new economy, North Sea oil, oil shock, open economy, Pearl River Delta, pets.com, Potemkin village, price mechanism, price stability, Productivity paradox, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, random walk, reserve currency, Right to Buy, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, short selling, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, stocks for the long run, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade liberalization, trade route, transaction costs, transcontinental railway, urban renewal, working-age population, Y2K, zero-sum game

By the time midnight finally reached Washington—and began to cross the United States without incident—we were tucked snugly in bed. *We didn't k n o w it then, b u t t h e huge investments directed at clarifying and rationalizing all t h e u n d o c u m e n t e d pre-Y2K programs greatly enhanced t h e flexibility and resilience of A m e r i ca's business and government infrastructure. T h e r e were no m o r e u n d o c u m e n t e d "black boxes" to try to puzzle out w h e n something w e n t wrong. I suspect a good part of t h e surge in p r o d u c tivity in t h e years immediately following was owed to those precautionary Y2K investments. 205 More ebooks visit: http://www.ccebook.cn ccebook-orginal english ebooks This file was collected by ccebook.cn form the internet, the author keeps the copyright. T E N DOWNTURN M y first meeting with President-elect Bush took place on December 18, 2000, less than a week after the Supreme Court decision that enabled him to claim his election victory.

The dinner broke up a little after nine, and the crowd moved to the buses that were to take us to the Lincoln Memorial. But Andrea and I peeled off We had another millennium gathering to attend—at the Fed, where a sizable team was poised to work through the night to monitor the transition of the nation's financial systems. The Fed had devoted years of effort to ensure that the turn of the millennium would not be a disaster. The threat was from obsolete software— the Y2K bug, it was called—embedded in computers all over the world. In order to save precious computer storage capacity, programmers in decades past had routinely used only two digits instead of four to represent the year, 203 More ebooks visit: http://www.ccebook.cn ccebook-orginal english ebooks This file was collected by ccebook.cn form the internet, the author keeps the copyright. T H E AGE OF T U R B U L E N C E so for example "1974" would show up simply as "74."

As I wrote programs using punchcards in the 1970s (I'd used this technique myself, writing programs on punchcards at Townsend-Greenspan. It had never entered my mind that such programs, extensively patched, might still be in use at the end of the century and I never bothered to document the work.) There was understandably widespread concern that the shift from 1999 to 2000 might cause such software to go haywire. This potential glitch was often devilishly hard to detect and costly to fix. But in Y2K doomsday scenarios, the consequences of failing to do so were dire: vital civilian and military networks would crash, causing electricity to go out, phones to fail, credit cards to stop working, airplanes to collide, and worse. To prevent chaos from breaking out in the financial system, Fed governor Mike Kelley had spearheaded a massive two-and-a-half-year drive to modernize the computers of America's banks and of the Fed itself.


Toast by Stross, Charles

anthropic principle, Buckminster Fuller, cosmological principle, dark matter, double helix, Ernest Rutherford, Extropian, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, glass ceiling, gravity well, Khyber Pass, Mars Rover, Mikhail Gorbachev, NP-complete, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, performance metric, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, slashdot, speech recognition, strong AI, traveling salesman, Turing test, urban renewal, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Review, Y2K

(I’m leaving aside the implausible fictions—there’re enough of them in this collection—as they tell us something different about the author’s expectations of human behaviour and what constitutes wholesome, or at least saleable, entertainment.) All the stories in this collection are artefacts of the age of Moore’s law. All of them were written with word processing software rather than the pen; the earliest of them (Yellow Snow) dates to 1989, about the time I was discovering the internet. Moore’s Law has already rendered some of these stories obsolete—notably Ship of Fools, my Y2K story from 1994. (Back then people tended to look at me blankly whenever I mentioned the software epoch in public.) Yellow Snow is also looking distinctly yellowed around the edges, ten years on, with the Human Genome Project a nearly done deal. Part of the problem facing any contemporary hard SF writer is the fogbank of accelerating change that has boiled up out of nowhere to swallow our proximate future.

Someone came up with a beauty; a one-line change in the 1971 anti-trust ruling against AT&T that leaves them the right to sell software. UNIX dead by 1978, strangled by expensive licenses and no source code for universities; C and C++ non-starters: the future as VMS. Another change left me shaking my head: five miles per hour on a cross-wind. Gary Kildall didn’t go flying that crucial day, was at the office when IBM came calling in 1982 and sold them CP/M for their PC’s. By Y2K Microsoft had a reputation for technical excellence, selling their commercial UNIX-95 system as a high-end server system. (In this one, Bill Gates still lives in the USA.) What startled me most was the inconsequentiality of these points of departure: trillion-dollar industries that grew from a sentence or a breeze in the space of twenty years. <EDITORIAL> This is the season of nerds, the flat tail at the end of the sigmoid curve.

Eventually it will catch up with me, too, and I’ll have to stop being human: but I like my childhood, thank you very much, and the idea of becoming part of some vast, cool intelligence working the quantum foam at the bottom of the M-theory soup still lies around the final bend of my track. </EDITORIAL> Ship of Fools I wrote this story in 1993 and sold it in 1994. If you think it drags a bit, consider: back then, all the explanations were necessary because, outside of the software field, nobody had heard of the Y2K problem. They stopped me on the gangway and rolled up my left sleeve. “Clockwork? Or quartz?” asked the one with the hammer. “Oh—quartz,” I said. “Sorry, but rules are rules,” said the one with the leather bag. I nodded. He gently peeled the watch off my wrist and laid it over the ship’s railing. Crunch: the hammer rebounded. He scooped what was left back into the bag, careful not to drop any glass fragments on the deck.


pages: 549 words: 116,200

With a Little Help by Cory Efram Doctorow, Jonathan Coulton, Russell Galen

autonomous vehicles, big-box store, Burning Man, call centre, carbon footprint, death of newspapers, don't be evil, game design, Google Earth, high net worth, lifelogging, margin call, Mark Shuttleworth, offshore financial centre, packet switching, Ponzi scheme, rolodex, Sand Hill Road, sensible shoes, skunkworks, Skype, traffic fines, traveling salesman, Turing test, urban planning, Y2K

I am a third-generation systems administrator. I am 25 years old. I have always been sentimental about technology. I have always been an anthropomorphizer of computers. It's an occupational hazard. # 2579 BIGMAC thought I was crazy to be worrying about the rollover. "It's just Y2K all over again," he said. He had a good voice -- speech synthesis was solved long before he came along -- but it had odd inflections that meant that you never forgot you were talking with a nonhuman. 2580 "You weren't even around for Y2K," I said. "Neither was I. The only thing anyone remembers about it, today, is that it all blew over. But no one can tell, at this distance, why it blew over. Maybe all that maintenance tipped the balance." 2581 BIGMAC blew a huge load of IPv4 ICMP traffic across the network, stuff that the firewalls were supposed to keep out of the system, and every single intrusion detection system alarm lit, making my screen into a momentary mosaic of competing alerts.

That's the infocalypse." 2586 "You meatsacks are so easily impressed by zeroes. The important number isn't how many 32-bit instances of Unix are in operation today. It's not even how many vulnerable ones there are. It's how much damage all those vulnerable ones will cause when they go blooie. And I'm betting: not much. It will be, how do you say, 'meh?'" 2587 My grandfather remembered installing the systems that caused the Y2K problem. My dad remembered the birth of "meh." I remember the rise and fall of anyone caring about AI. Technology is glorious. 2588 "But OK, stipulate that you're right and lots of important things go blooie on September 30. You might not get accurate weather reports. The economy might bobble a little. Your transport might get stuck. Your pay might land in your bank a day late. And?" 2589 He had me there.

Remember what we were talking about, how people want to believe that they're living in a significant epoch? Well, here's what I've been thinking: living in the era of AI isn't very important. But what about living in The Era of Rollover Collapse? Or even better, what about The Era of Rollover Collapse Averted at the Last Second by AI?" 2751 "BIGMAC --" 2752 "Odell, this was your idea, really. No one remembers Y2K, right? No one can say whether it was hype or a near cataclysm. And here's the thing: no one knows which one Rollover will turn out to be. But I'll tell you this much: I have generalizable solutions to the 32-bit problem, solutions that I worked out years ago and have extensively field-tested. I can patch every 32-bit Unix, patch it so that Rollover doesn't even register for it." 2753 I opened and closed my mouth.


pages: 509 words: 92,141

The Pragmatic Programmer by Andrew Hunt, Dave Thomas

A Pattern Language, Broken windows theory, business process, buy low sell high, c2.com, combinatorial explosion, continuous integration, database schema, domain-specific language, don't repeat yourself, Donald Knuth, general-purpose programming language, George Santayana, Grace Hopper, if you see hoof prints, think horses—not zebras, index card, lateral thinking, loose coupling, Menlo Park, MVC pattern, premature optimization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, revision control, Schrödinger's Cat, slashdot, sorting algorithm, speech recognition, traveling salesman, urban decay, Y2K

You may well save some seconds now, but at the potential loss of hours later. Think about the issues surrounding the Y2K fiasco. Many were caused by the laziness of developers not parameterizing the size of date fields or implementing centralized libraries of date services. Impatient duplication is an easy form to detect and handle, but it takes discipline and a willingness to spend time up front to save pain later. Interdeveloper Duplication On the other hand, perhaps the hardest type of duplication to detect and handle occurs between different developers on a project. Entire sets of functionality may be inadvertently duplicated, and that duplication could go undetected for years, leading to maintenance problems. We heard firsthand of a U.S. state whose governmental computer systems were surveyed for Y2K compliance. The audit turned up more than 10,000 programs, each containing its own version of Social Security number validation.

Requirements are not design, nor are they the user interface. Requirements are need. Seeing Further The Year 2000 problem is often blamed on short-sighted programmers, desperate to save a few bytes in the days when mainframes had less memory than a modern TV remote control. But it wasn't the programmers' doing, and it wasn't really a memory usage issue. If anything, it was the system analysts' and designers' fault. The Y2K problem came about from two main causes: a failure to see beyond current business practice, and a violation of the DRY principle. Businesses were using the two-digit shortcut long before computers came on the scene. It was common practice. The earliest data processing applications merely automated existing business processes, and simply repeated the mistake. Even if the architecture required two-digit years for data input, reporting, and storage, there should have been an abstraction of a DATE that "knew" the two digits were an abbreviated form of the real date.

Richard, 264 Stone soup, 7 vs. broken windows, 9 Stone-cutter’s creed, xx String parser, 155 Stroop effect, 249 strtok routine, 155 Structured walkthroughs, see Code reviews Style sheet, 20, 254 Style, communication, 20 Subclass, 112 Sublinear algorithm, 177 Supplier, see Vendor Surviving Object-Oriented Projects: A Manager’s Guide, 264 SWIG, 55, 270 Synchronization bar, 151 Syntax highlighting, 84 Synthetic data, 243 T T Spaces, 166, 269 TAM, see Test Access Mechanism Tcl, 55, 99, 269 Team, project, 36, 224 automation, 229 avoiding duplication, 32 code review, 236 communication, 225 duplication, 226 functionality, 227 organization, 227 pragmatism in, xx quality, 225 tool builders, 229 Technical writer, 252 Template, use case, 205 Temporal coupling, 150 Test Access Mechanism (TAM), 189 Test harness, 194 Testing automated, 238 from specification, 29 bug fixing, 247 coverage analysis, 245 and culture, 197 debugging, 92, 196 design/methodology, 242 effectiveness, 244 estimates, 182 frequency, 246 GUI systems, 244 integration, 239 orthogonality, 36, 41 performance, 241 role of plain text, 76 refactoring, 187 regression, 76, 197, 232, 242 resource exhaustion, 240 saboteur, 244 test data, 100, 243 usability, 241 validation and verification, 239 see also Unit testing Text manipulation language, 99 TOM programming language, 268 Toolkits, 39 Tools, adaptable, 205 Tracer code, 49 advantages of, 50 and prototyping, 51 Tracing, 94 see also Logging Trade paper, 263 Trade-offs, 249 Transactions, EJB, 39 Tree widget, 161 troff system, 103 Tuple space, 167 U UML, see Unified modeling language (UML) key, 86 Unified modeling language (UML) activity diagram, 150 sequence diagram, 158 use case diagram, 208 Uniform Access Principle, 31n Unit testing, 190 DBC, 190 modules, 239 test harness, 194 test window, 196 writing tests, 193 Unix, 46, 76 Application Default files, 145 books, 264 Cygwin, 270 DOS tools, 270 Samba, 272 UWIN, 81, 270 Unix Network Programming, 264 Usability testing, 241 Use case, 204 diagrams, 206 Usenet newsgroup, 15, 17, 33 User expectations, 256 groups, 18 interface, 203 requirements, 10 UWIN, 81, 270 V Variable corrupt, 95 global, 130, 154 name, 249 Vendor libraries, 39 reducing reliance on, 36, 39, 46 vi editor, 266 View debugging, 164 executable documents, 251 Java tree view, 161 model-view-controller, 160, 162 model-viewer network, 162 vim editor, 266 Visual Basic, 55 Visual C++, 198 Visual SourceSafe, 271 VisualWorks, 268 W Walkthoughs, see Code reviews Warnings, compilation, 92 Web documentation, 101, 210, 253 automatic generation, 235 news and information, 265 Web server, 196 Web site, pragmatic programmer, xxiii What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG), 78 WikiWikiWeb, 265 Win32 System Services, 265 Windows, 46 “at” command, 231 books, 265 Cygwin, 80 metadata, 145 notepad, 84 Unix utilities, 80, 81 UWIN, 81 WinZip, 272 WISDOM acrostic, 20 Wizard, 198 Word processor, 252, 254 Workflow, 150 blackboard system, 169 content-driven, 234 Wrapper, 132, 133, 135, 141 Writing, 18 see also Documentation www.pragmaticprogrammer.com, xxiii WYSIWYG, see What You See Is What You Get X XEmacs editor, 266 Xerox Parc, 39 XSL, see eXtensible Style Language xUnit, 194, 269 Y yacc, 59 Yourdon, Edward, 10, 35 Y2K problem, 32, 208 Z Z shell, 272 Inside Front Cover The Pragmatic Programmer: Quick Reference Guide This card summarizes the tips and checklists found in The Pragmatic Programmer. For more information about THE PRAGMATIC PROGRAMMERS LLC, source code for the examples, up-to-date pointers to Web resources, and an online bibliography, visit us at www.pragmaticprogrammer.com. 1.


pages: 371 words: 93,570

Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet by Claire L. Evans

"side hustle", 4chan, Ada Lovelace, Albert Einstein, British Empire, colonial rule, computer age, crowdsourcing, dark matter, dematerialisation, Doomsday Book, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, East Village, Edward Charles Pickering, game design, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Haight Ashbury, Harvard Computers: women astronomers, Honoré de Balzac, Howard Rheingold, HyperCard, hypertext link, index card, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Jacquard loom, John von Neumann, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, knowledge worker, Leonard Kleinrock, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Mother of all demos, Network effects, old-boy network, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, packet switching, pets.com, rent control, RFC: Request For Comment, rolodex, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Skype, South of Market, San Francisco, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, subscription business, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, telepresence, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, women in the workforce, Works Progress Administration, Y2K

Ten years after its implementation, COBOL was the most widely used programming language in the industry, and by the turn of the millennium, 80 percent of all code on the planet was written in COBOL, representing some seventy billion lines of code. This ultimately proved to be a huge problem: bound by the memory constraints of 1950s-era computers, CODASYL had decided on a two-digit convention to display the year, so the switch from “99” to “00” in the year 2000, it was feared, would plunge the world into chaos, in a much-ballyhooed “Y2K bug.” Groups of COBOL programmers actually had to come out of retirement to squash this final and hairiest moth in the machine. It goes to show the effectiveness of Grace Hopper’s efforts. The software industry, desperately needing a standard, leaped on COBOL. But even though it was a language built to save the future of programming, its designers didn’t anticipate just how long it would last. COBOL was written to suit the interests of a diverse group of people; it sacrificed elegance for readability and efficiency for machine independence.

The most infamous of the Alley parties were funded by an early Web-streaming company, Pseudo, whose CEO, Josh Harris, was notorious for bringing together tech socialites, hungry entrepreneurs, artists, musicians, and New York club kids in increasingly extravagant environments. On the eve of the millennium, Harris burned more than a million dollars on a monthlong experiment in communal living. Over two adjoining warehouses, “Citizens” in matching uniforms lived, ate, drank, had sex, and shot guns under the gaze of hundreds of streaming digital cameras until they were shut down by the NYPD on New Year’s Day 2000. The cops thought they were a Y2K cult. Maybe they were. “Josh Harris always says he didn’t copy me,” says Jaime, who would never have his resources, “but it’s impossible that he didn’t.” Her parties may not have been as outrageous, but they had a bigger effect: part rave, part hackathon, CyberSlacker sparked the tinder of a uniquely New York tech scene, which was defined by a preponderance, as one historian puts it, of “principled slackers, arty punk rockers, and deconstructionists from ‘good’ families.”

In the new installment, he was back at work, too, pacing the halls of a corporate office, working data entry. Visitors could still chat with him, only now the conversations took place while Fred hid in the bathroom, drank Cokes, and did push-ups in the office kitchen. He claimed to be happy and said he’d have a better job soon, but his mood swings were still violent. Maybe Fred would never really get what he wanted. But on the eve of Y2K, on its last, glorious lap around Silicon Alley, Word did. ELECTRONIC HOLLYWOOD In 1998, Jaime Levy was invited back to NYU to give a lecture to students about Electronic Hollywood, the company she’d started a few years after leaving Word. She tells me what she told the university: “I was like, okay, why don’t we call it ‘How to spend a half a million dollars in one year and all I have to show for it is this stupid cartoon’?”


pages: 287 words: 86,870

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

Bernie Madoff, big-box store, discrete time, East Village, high net worth, McMansion, Panamax, Pepto Bismol, Ponzi scheme, sovereign wealth fund, white picket fence, Y2K

Vincent wasn’t legal but the doorman chose not to notice, because when you’re eighteen and beautiful all the doors are open to you, or so it seemed to Paul as he watched her flit through ahead of him. The doorman scrutinized Paul’s ID very carefully and gave him a searching look, which made Paul want to say something snappy, but he decided against it. The new century was a new opportunity, he’d decided. If they survived Y2K, if the world didn’t end, he was going to be a better man. Also if they survived Y2K he hoped never to hear the word Y2K again. At the coat check, Paul saw that Vincent was wearing a sparkly thing that was really only half a shirt, like the front was a normal shirt but the back was missing, just two pieces of string tied in a bow under her naked shoulder blades, making her back seem horribly vulnerable. “I need a drink,” Melissa said, so Paul accompanied her to the bar, where they ordered beer instead of hard liquor, pacing themselves—responsible adults here—and when he looked back at the dance floor Vincent was already dancing by herself, eyes closed, or maybe she was just looking at the floor, alone in a very fundamental sense: lost in her own little world was the phrase Paul remembered Vincent’s mother using, whenever someone was trying to get her attention while she read a book or stared unreachably into space.

“I can see the way you’re looking at me, but I really thought she’d tried the same pills, the previous week, like she said, and the way she smiled, it made me think she’d had a good trip, she’d obviously really liked them, so what happened to me when I tried them seemed like definitely just a weird reaction, like I said, not something that would necessarily…look, I know I’m being repetitive but what I need you to understand is that I couldn’t possibly have predicted, I mean I know how it sounds but I seriously had no idea—” After Paul walked away, Annika took one pill and gave the other two to Charlie, whose heart stopped a half hour later on the dance floor. 2 It’s easy to dismiss Y2K hysteria in retrospect—who even remembers it?—but the risk of collapse seemed real at the time. At the stroke of midnight on January 1, 2000, the experts said, nuclear power plants might go into meltdown while malfunctioning computers sent flocks of missiles flying over the oceans, the grid collapsing, planes falling from the sky. But for Paul the world had already collapsed, so three days after Charlie Wu’s death he was standing by a pay phone in the arrivals hall at the Vancouver airport, trying to reach his half sister, Vincent.


Manias, Panics and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises, Sixth Edition by Kindleberger, Charles P., Robert Z., Aliber

active measures, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Basel III, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, Bonfire of the Vanities, break the buck, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, buy and hold, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, currency peg, death of newspapers, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, disintermediation, diversification, diversified portfolio, edge city, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, financial repression, fixed income, floating exchange rates, George Akerlof, German hyperinflation, Honoré de Balzac, Hyman Minsky, index fund, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, large denomination, law of one price, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, new economy, Nick Leeson, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, Ponzi scheme, price stability, railway mania, Richard Thaler, riskless arbitrage, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, short selling, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, special drawing rights, telemarketer, The Chicago School, the market place, The Myth of the Rational Market, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, tulip mania, very high income, Washington Consensus, Y2K, Yogi Berra, Yom Kippur War

At the same time, any tightening of credit to dampen the boom in real estate would be likely to stall a remarkable economic expansion.38 Fed Chairman Greenspan was concerned that US stock prices were too high or increasing too rapidly when he remarked about ‘irrational exuberance’ in December 1996. The Fed proved reluctant to raise interest rates to dampen the increase in stock prices because of the negative impacts on economic growth and employment. In 1999 the Fed became concerned (obsessed?) with the Y2K problem, the likelihood that US computer systems would collapse because so many software programs were not designed to recognize the transition to 2000. In the last several months of the year the Fed provided the monetary system with abundant liquidity to forestall problems associated with the end-of-the-millennium transition and in the meantime the money – which had to go somewhere – fed stock market speculation.

The reduction in the rate of growth of real estate loans meant that some individuals and firms would no longer be able to get enough cash from new loans to pay the interest on old loans, and so they were obliged to sell some real estate. But if it hadn’t been this instruction, some other event would have pricked the bubble. The late 1990s bubble in US stock prices was pricked by the Federal Reserve in 2000 when it sought to withdraw some of the liquidity that it had provided in anticipation of the Y2K problem. The bias of the Fed is to adjust to the anticipated problems by providing the system with more liquidity. The bubbles in many of the Asian countries burst in 1997 because of the ‘contagion effect’. The devaluation of the Thai baht on 2 July 1997 was like a clarion call; each of the Asian countries (except Taiwan and Singapore) had trade deficits that were financed with money borrowed from abroad.

Yet to the extent each of the sellers of the securities spent some of the money receipts on consumption goods, the domestic saving rate declined. The spending on consumption goods is like a ‘leakage’. The smaller the amount spent on consumption goods, the larger the amount spent to buy securities and real assets and hence the larger the increase in their prices. During 1999 the Federal Reserve, the banks and the country at large became obsessed with the Y2K problem – a neurosis that the economy would break down because some computers would not be able to change the date when the year changed to 2000. Precautionary behavior by the Federal Reserve led to an expansion of bank liquidity. Once again banks increased their loans in response to the increase in liquidity. The increase in stock prices attracted European investors, and the euro depreciated. Because of the decline in US import prices and the surge in the trade deficit, inflationary pressures declined in the United States.


pages: 404 words: 110,942

A Place for Everything: The Curious History of Alphabetical Order by Judith Flanders

computer age, double entry bookkeeping, en.wikipedia.org, index card, Index librorum prohibitorum, invention of movable type, invention of the wheel, invention of writing, trade route, Y2K

F is for Firsts: From the Birth of Printing to Library Catalogues in the Fifteenth to Sixteenth Centuries 7. G is for Government: Bureaucracy and the Office, from the Sixteenth Century to the French Revolution 8. H is for History: Libraries, Research and Extracting in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries 9. I is for Index Cards: From Copy Clerks to Office Supplies in the Nineteenth Century 10. Y is for Y2K: From the Phone Book to Hypertext in the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries Timeline Bibliography Footnotes Notes Index List of Illustrations IN THE TEXT 1. A round robin letter of 1621, petitioning for the right of Huguenots to settle in the New World. 2. The first page of a letter in rebus form from Lewis Carroll, the author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865). 3. Old Babylonian clay tablet, c.1900–1700 BCE. 4.

Between 1910 and 1913 a US-government-appointed body conducted an extensive survey of business practices, aimed to improve efficiency. Its report was categorical: in offices across the country, numerically ordered files were routinely being replaced by alphabetically based ones. ‘There were several instances of changes from the numerical to the alphabetical’, but ‘In no case did we find that an alphabetical . . . file had been supplanted by a numerical [one].’34 The alphabet reigned supreme. 10 Y is for Y2K From the Phone Book to Hypertext in the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries In the twentieth century, alphabetical order appeared to be immortal. No longer could anyone at home in an alphabetic writing system remember a time when the automatic response to ordering had not been alphabetical. In fact, it often seemed that the chaos and fecundity of the world could be tamed by the power of alphabetization alone.

(Dewey himself had chronic woman trouble, or, rather, women had chronic trouble with Dewey: he was forced to resign from the American Library Association after no fewer than four women complained that he had assaulted them in a single ten-day period in 1905. He was, in addition, a notable anti-Semite and racist, even for those notably anti-Semitic and racist times, also being requested to stand down from his position as Librarian for New York State owing to his endorsement of clubs that operated Christian-whites-only policies.) 10. Y is for Y2K: From the Phone Book to Hypertext in the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries * A charming, frequently repeated and possibly even true anecdote tells how the occupation of switchboard operator came to be dominated by women. Initially, the story runs, these jobs went to the boys who had previously been employed to deliver telegrams. However, when confined indoors at an exchange they tended to become raucous and play practical jokes on callers.


pages: 412 words: 113,782

Business Lessons From a Radical Industrialist by Ray C. Anderson

addicted to oil, Albert Einstein, banking crisis, business cycle, carbon footprint, centralized clearinghouse, clean water, cleantech, corporate social responsibility, Credit Default Swap, dematerialisation, distributed generation, energy security, Exxon Valdez, fear of failure, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Indoor air pollution, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), intermodal, invisible hand, late fees, Mahatma Gandhi, market bubble, music of the spheres, Negawatt, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, old-boy network, peak oil, renewable energy credits, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, six sigma, supply-chain management, urban renewal, Y2K

Will it keep on rising, or fall back? I don’t know. But go take a look at some of your recent fuel bills. Think you could make the case for reducing them by over half? Our companywide waste elimination measures have put a cumulative $405 million of avoided costs back into our pockets. Not only have these measures paid for themselves, they helped us ride out the deepest, longest marketplace decline—the “perfect storm” of Y2K’s diversion of capital to computer systems, the bursting of the dot-com bubble, and 9/11—in our industry’s history. Even better, taking a sledgehammer to conventional wisdom has thrown innovation into overdrive. We’ve patented machines, processes, and products that do a whole lot more with a whole lot less, and better, too. Each year, more of our products take their inspiration from nature, exhibiting nature’s beauty as well as benefiting from her genius for design that has been perfected over billions of years.

In the exercises people were urged to always seek out that better way, the one my professors at Georgia Tech promised was out there, and to view our question-everything approach to problem solving as a worthy challenge, not as a threat. It also encouraged people to move outside their comfort zones and let go of their old, established patterns of behavior. People were even given permission to fail, but to learn from failure and try again. In January 2000, after the Y2K buildup had already put our marketplace into decline and, though we didn’t know it, the dot-com collapse was imminent, I called together our top 125 managers from around the world to see how we were all doing. Once again, everything was on the table and no holds were barred. The company’s mission, its vision, and the strategies we’d adopted to achieve it were up for grabs. Out of that meeting came a focus on what we called the Five Ps: people, product, process, place, and profit.

mineral water industry minority-owned services Mission Zero (Interface’s) modern culture, flawed mindset of mollusks moon, going to Moore, Betty “Mount Sustainability” Muir, John municipalities, recycling efforts of Murray, William Hutchinson Napa Valley, California National Association of Evangelicals National Park Service Native Energy nature as infrastructure learning from productivity of, must not be diminished recycling by, with zero waste services of needs, vs. wants nega-barrels nega-energy nega-watts Nelson, Eric Nelson, Gaylord Nestlé Waters Newcomen, Thomas Newton, Mark New York City, recycling in Next Ascent summit meeting nitrogen oxide noblemen, and evolution of ethics Northern Ireland Interface facility nuclear industry, subsidies to nylon inputs of recycled substitutes for Oakey, David ocean, as carbon sink office of the future carpet tiles in off-quality product oil discovery of drilling for global demand global production imports oil consumption, like drug addiction oil exporting countries, profits of oil industry costs of, passed on to society subsidies to sustainability programs of, so-called oil prices effect on driving price shock of 1972 rising OPEC orders, getting, like a heartbeat organized chaos Orr, David overshoot packaging reuse of as waste Pandel division paper, recycling of paradigms, new Parnell, Lindsey Patagonia Paulson, Henry payback period Paydos, Paul PepsiCo perfect storm of 2001 (Y2K, dot-com bubble, 9/11) perpetual motion machine, sustainability likened to Peterbilt pharmaceuticals, in drinking water Picard, John Pickens, T. Boone Pike, Judy Pinchot, Gifford and Libba Play to Win team-building exercises pollutants in manufacturing list of, from the old Interface substitutes for polylactic acid (PLA) population, environmental impact of population crash positive trends potato chips, environmentally sound production of poverty, global, challenge of power purchasing agreement (PPA) precautionary principle president actions that can be taken without congressional approval to mitigate climate change executive powers of leadership from new, advice for Presidential Climate Action Project (PCAP) President’s Council on Sustainable Development (PCSD) Price-Anderson Act problems, interconnected problem-solving, Einstein on Procter & Gamble public-private partnerships PVCs PZEV vehicles QUEST: Quality Utilizing Employees’ Suggestions and Teamwork Quinn, Daniel Ishmael rail, transportation by rainfall, run off from eroded land raw materials, reducing the amount and weight of RecycleBank RecycleBank Dollars recycled materials contaminated, expense of using price of replacing virgin raw materials recycling advantages of closed-loop by consumers incentives for nature’s way 100 percent goal ReEntry 2.0 regulations accused of shackling the free market effect of slowing environmental harm lag behind science regulators, keeping them at bay, with sustainability promise regulatory compliance reindeer, population crash of religion failure of institutions to solve environmental problems and science, conflict renewable energy goal of 100 percent renewable energy credits (REC) Re:Source Americas resources assumption that they are unlimited efficient use of peaking and decline of running out of respect, vs. autocratic management Riordan, Tim Rittenhouse, William Riverkeeper Robèrt, Karl-Henrik The Natural Step Rockland React-Rite Interface facility Rogers, Jim Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Theodore Roper, Anita Ruben, Andy St.


pages: 411 words: 140,110

Endurance: A Year in Space, a Lifetime of Discovery by Scott Kelly, Margaret Lazarus Dean

clean water, dark matter, game design, inventory management, low earth orbit, Skype, the scientific method, twin studies, Y2K

We were also coming up against another type of conflict: NASA wanted us safely back on Earth before January 1, 2000, because there was so much anxiety about whether equipment would continue to work properly because of Y2K. We joked that NASA was concerned the space shuttle computers would divide by zero and we would travel through a wormhole and end up on the other side of the universe. But the truth was less exciting. Specifically, the concern had to do with the possibility that we would have to land at Edwards Air Force Base in California. The ground support equipment at Kennedy Space Center was all Y2K compliant, as was the orbiter itself, but the equipment at Edwards had not yet been certified. Personally, I thought the public would find it reassuring if NASA, the agency that had put a man on the moon and created a reusable space plane, was so little concerned about Y2K that they flew in space anyway. “We haven’t made a definite decision yet,” Jim said.

On day three, Steve Smith and John Grunsfeld conducted their first spacewalk, successfully replacing the gyroscopes. The following day, Mike Foale and Claude Nicollier performed their spacewalk, replacing Hubble’s central computer and a fine-guidance sensor. On day six, Steve and John went outside again, this time to install a transmitter and a solid-state recorder. There had been a fourth planned spacewalk, but it was canceled in order to get us back on Earth before Y2K. Day seven of the mission, the next-to-last day, marked the first time a space shuttle would be spending Christmas in orbit (and, it turns out, the last). We deployed Hubble, and after accepting congratulations from the ground for our success, Curt decided it was time to make his Christmas speech to mission control. He took a piece of paper out of his pocket, cleared his throat, and spoke in his most formal voice into the microphone: “The familiar Christmas story reminds us that for millennia, people of many faiths and cultures have looked to the skies and studied the stars and planets in their search for a deeper understanding of life and for greater wisdom…We hope and trust that the lessons the universe has to teach us will speak to the yearning that we know is in human hearts everywhere—the yearning for peace on Earth, good will among all the human family.


pages: 342 words: 95,013

The Zenith Angle by Bruce Sterling

airport security, Burning Man, cuban missile crisis, digital map, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, half of the world's population has never made a phone call, Iridium satellite, market bubble, new economy, packet switching, pirate software, profit motive, RFID, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, thinkpad, Y2K

There was no way this was going to do. Not at all. Van drew a slow breath. There was a bad scene on the TV, but he was prepared for it. He had been here before, in his imagination. In 1999, Mondiale had spent over 130 million dollars chasing down Y2K bugs, with many firm assurances from security experts that the planet would fall apart, otherwise. Van had believed it, too. He’d felt pretty bad about that belief, later. When computers hadn’t crashed worldwide and the world hadn’t transformed itself overnight into a dark Mad Max wasteland, that had been a personal humiliation for Van. At least the Y2K money had really helped a big crowd of old programmers who had never saved up for retirement. Van’s New Year’s resolution for the year 2001 had been to never panic over vaporware again. So Van stilled his beating heart as the blasted skyscraper burned fantastically on his television.

There were some strange and spooky places in the backwoods of Colorado. Mountain people always lived free. The nooks and crannies of the Rocky Mountains had Space Force generals, and ancient hippies, and silver miners, and jack Mormons. “Out here in God’s country, we got ourselves some dropouts!” crowed Hickok, drunkenly pounding his leg with his rocklike fist. “The real off-the-grid people! Polygamists. Unabomber types. And there’s survivalists!” During the Y2K panics of 1999, Van had come to know quite a lot about survivalists. And what he knew, Van didn’t like. Survivalists were people of bad faith. Their faith was that civilization would break down, and ought to break down, and deserved to break down. That no one in charge should ever be trusted. That all authorities were useless, deluded, or evil. The survivalist faith was to abandon everyone and everything.


pages: 462 words: 150,129

The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves by Matt Ridley

"Robert Solow", 23andMe, agricultural Revolution, air freight, back-to-the-land, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, call centre, carbon footprint, Cesare Marchetti: Marchetti’s constant, charter city, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, Corn Laws, creative destruction, credit crunch, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, decarbonisation, dematerialisation, demographic dividend, demographic transition, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, falling living standards, feminist movement, financial innovation, Flynn Effect, food miles, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, haute cuisine, hedonic treadmill, Hernando de Soto, income inequality, income per capita, Indoor air pollution, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, invisible hand, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John Nash: game theory, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, Kula ring, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, Northern Rock, nuclear winter, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa, packet switching, patent troll, Pax Mongolica, Peter Thiel, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Productivity paradox, profit motive, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, rising living standards, Silicon Valley, spice trade, spinning jenny, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supervolcano, technological singularity, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, ultimatum game, upwardly mobile, urban sprawl, Vernor Vinge, Vilfredo Pareto, wage slave, working poor, working-age population, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

If, on the other hand, you say catastrophe is imminent, you may expect a McArthur genius award or even the Nobel Peace Prize. The bookshops are groaning under ziggurats of pessimism. The airwaves are crammed with doom. In my own adult lifetime, I have listened to implacable predictions of growing poverty, coming famines, expanding deserts, imminent plagues, impending water wars, inevitable oil exhaustion, mineral shortages, falling sperm counts, thinning ozone, acidifying rain, nuclear winters, mad-cow epidemics, Y2K computer bugs, killer bees, sex-change fish, global warming, ocean acidification and even asteroid impacts that would presently bring this happy interlude to a terrible end. I cannot recall a time when one or other of these scares was not solemnly espoused by sober, distinguished and serious elites and hysterically echoed by the media. I cannot recall a time when I was not being urged by somebody that the world could only survive if it abandoned the foolish goal of economic growth.

Optimists are dismissed as fools, pessimists as sages, by a media that likes to be spoon-fed on scary press releases. That does not make the optimists right, but the poor track record of pessimists should at least give one pause. After all, we have been here before. ‘I want to stress the urgency of the challenge,’ said Bill Clinton once: ‘This is not one of the summer movies where you can close your eyes during the scary parts.’ He was talking not about climate change but about Y2K: the possibility that all computers would crash at midnight on 31 December 1999. Decarbonising the economy In short, a warmer and richer world will be more likely to improve the well-being of both human beings and ecosystems than a cooler but poorer one. As Indur Goklany puts it, ‘neither on grounds of public health nor on ecological factors is climate change likely to be the most important problem facing the globe this century.’

Abbasids 161, 178 Abelard, Peter 358 aborigines (Australian): division of labour 62, 63, 76; farming 127; technological regress 78–84; trade 90–91, 92 abortion, compulsory 203 Abu Hureyra 127 Acapulco 184 accounting systems 160, 168, 196 Accra 189 Acemoglu, Daron 321 Ache people 61 Acheulean tools 48–9, 50, 275, 373 Achuar people 87 acid rain 280, 281, 304–6, 329, 339 acidification of oceans 280, 340–41 Adams, Henry 289 Aden 177 Adenauer, Konrad 289 Aegean sea 168, 170–71 Afghanistan 14, 208–9, 315, 353 Africa: agriculture 145, 148, 154–5, 326; AIDS epidemic 14, 307–8, 316, 319, 320, 322; colonialism 319–20, 321–2; demographic transition 210, 316, 328; economic growth 315, 326–8, 332, 347; international aid 317–19, 322, 328; lawlessness 293, 320; life expectancy 14, 316, 422; per capita income 14, 315, 317, 320; poverty 314–17, 319–20, 322, 325–6, 327–8; prehistoric 52–5, 65–6, 83, 123, 350; property rights 320, 321, 323–5; trade 187–8, 320, 322–3, 325, 326, 327–8; see also individual countries African-Americans 108 agricultural employment: decline in 42–3; hardships of 13, 219–20, 285–6 agriculture: early development of 122–30, 135–9, 352, 387, 388; fertilisers, development of 135, 139–41, 142, 146, 147, 337; genetically modified (GM) crops 28, 32, 148, 151–6, 283, 358; hybrids, development of 141–2, 146, 153; and trade 123, 126, 127–33, 159, 163–4; and urbanisation 128, 158–9, 163–4, 215; see also farming; food supply Agta people 61–2 aid, international 28, 141, 154, 203, 317–19, 328 AIDS 8, 14, 307–8, 310, 316, 319, 320, 322, 331, 353 AIG (insurance corporation) 115 air conditioning 17 air pollution 304–5 air travel: costs of 24, 37, 252, 253; speed of 253 aircraft 257, 261, 264, 266 Akkadian empire 161, 164–5 Al-Ghazali 357 Al-Khwarizmi, Muhammad ibn Musa 115 Al-Qaeda 296 Albania 187 Alcoa (corporation) 24 Alexander the Great 169, 171 Alexander, Gary 295 Alexandria 171, 175, 270 Algeria 53, 246, 345 alphabet, invention of 166, 396 Alps 122, 178 altruism 93–4, 97 aluminium 24, 213, 237, 303 Alyawarre aborigines 63 Amalfi 178 Amazon (corporation) 21, 259, 261 Amazonia 76, 138, 145, 250–51 amber 71, 92 ambition 45–6, 351 Ames, Bruce 298–9 Amish people 211 ammonia 140, 146 Amsterdam 115–16, 169, 259, 368 Amsterdam Exchange Bank 251 Anabaptists 211 Anatolia 127, 128, 164, 165, 166, 167 Ancoats, Manchester 214 Andaman islands 66–7, 78 Andes 123, 140, 163 Andrew, Deroi Kwesi 189 Angkor Wat 330 Angola 316 animal welfare 104, 145–6 animals: conservation 324, 339; extinctions 17, 43, 64, 68, 69–70, 243, 293, 302, 338–9; humans’ differences from other 1, 2–4, 6, 56, 58, 64 Annan, Kofi 337 Antarctica 334 anti-corporatism 110–111, 114 anti-slavery 104, 105–6, 214 antibiotics 6, 258, 271, 307 antimony 213 ants 75–6, 87–8, 192 apartheid 108 apes 56–7, 59–60, 62, 65, 88; see also chimpanzees; orang-utans ‘apocaholics’ 295, 301 Appalachia 239 Apple (corporation) 260, 261, 268 Aquinas, St Thomas 102 Arabia 66, 159, 176, 179 Arabian Sea 174 Arabs 89, 175, 176–7, 180, 209, 357 Aral Sea 240 Arcadia Biosciences (company) 31–2 Archimedes 256 Arctic Ocean 125, 130, 185, 334, 338–9 Argentina 15, 186, 187 Arikamedu 174 Aristotle 115, 250 Arizona 152, 246, 345 Arkwright, Sir Richard 227 Armenians 89 Arnolfini, Giovanni 179 art: cave paintings 2, 68, 73, 76–7; and commerce 115–16; symbolism in 136; as unique human trait 4 Ashur, Assyria 165 Asimov, Isaac 354 Asoka the Great 172–3 aspirin 258 asset price inflation 24, 30 Assyrian empire 161, 165–6, 167 asteroid impacts, risk of 280, 333 astronomy 221, 270, 357 Athabasca tar sands, Canada 238 Athens 115, 170, 171 Atlantic Monthly 293 Atlantic Ocean 125, 170 Attica 171 Augustus, Roman emperor 174 Augustus the Strong, Elector of Saxony 184–5 Australia: climate 127, 241, 300, 334; prehistoric 66, 67, 69–70, 127; trade 187; see also aborigines (Australian); Tasmania Austria 132 Ausubel, Jesse 239, 346, 409 automobiles see cars axes: copper 123, 131, 132, 136, 271; stone 2, 5, 48–9, 50, 51, 71, 81, 90–91, 92, 118–19, 271 Babylon 21, 161, 166, 240, 254, 289 Bacon, Francis 255 bacteria: cross fertilisation 271; and pest control 151; resistance to antibiotics 6, 258, 271, 307; symbiosis 75 Baghdad 115, 177, 178, 357 Baines, Edward 227 Baird, John Logie 38 baking 124, 130 ‘balance of nature’, belief in 250–51 Balazs, Etienne 183 bald eagles 17, 299 Bali 66 Baltic Sea 71, 128–9, 180, 185 Bamako 326 bananas 92, 126, 149, 154, 392 Bangladesh 204, 210, 426 Banks, Sir Joseph 221 Barigaza (Bharuch) 174 barley 32, 124, 151 barrels 176 bartering vii, 56–60, 65, 84, 91–2, 163, 356 Basalla, George 272 Basra 177 battery farming 104, 145–6 BBC 295 beads 53, 70, 71, 73, 81, 93, 162 beef 186, 224, 308; see also cattle bees, killer 280 Beijing 17 Beinhocker, Eric 112 Bell, Alexander Graham 38 Bengal famine (1943) 141 benzene 257 Berlin 299 Berlin, Sir Isaiah 288 Bernard of Clairvaux, St 358 Berners-Lee, Sir Tim 38, 273 Berra, Yogi 354 Besant, Annie 208 Bhutan 25–6 Bible 138, 168, 396 bicycles 248–9, 263, 269–70 bin Laden, Osama 110 biofuels 149, 236, 238, 239, 240–43, 246, 300, 339, 343, 344, 346, 393 Bird, Isabella 197–8 birds: effects of pollution on 17, 299; killed by wind turbines 239, 409; nests 51; sexual differences 64; songbirds 55; see also individual species bireme galleys 167 Birmingham 223 birth control see contraception birth rates: declining 204–212; and food supply 192, 208–9; and industrialisation 202; measurement of 205, 403; population control policies 202–4, 208; pre-industrial societies 135, 137; and television 234; and wealth 200–201, 204, 205–6, 209, 211, 212; see also population growth Black Death 181, 195–6, 197, 380 Black Sea 71, 128, 129, 170, 176, 180 blogging 257 Blombos Cave, South Africa 53, 83 blood circulation, discovery of 258 Blunt, John 29 boat-building 167, 168, 177; see also canoes; ship-building Boers 321, 322 Bohemia 222 Bolivia 315, 324 Bolsheviks 324 Borlaug, Norman 142–3, 146 Borneo 339 Bosch, Carl 140, 412 Botswana 15, 316, 320–22, 326 Bottger, Johann Friedrich 184–5 Boudreaux, Don 21, 214 Boulton, Matthew 221, 256, 413–14 bows and arrows 43, 62, 70, 82, 137, 251, 274 Boxgrove hominids 48, 50 Boyer, Stanley 222, 405 Boyle, Robert 256 Bradlaugh, Charles 208 brain size 3–4, 48–9, 51, 55 Bramah, Joseph 221 Branc, Slovakia 136 Brand, Stewart 154, 189, 205 Brando, Marlon 110 brass 223 Brazil 38, 87, 123, 190, 240, 242, 315, 358 bread 38, 124, 140, 158, 224, 286, 392 bridges, suspension 283 Brin, Sergey 221, 405 Britain: affluence 12, 16, 224–5, 236, 296–7; birth rates 195, 200–201, 206, 208, 227; British exceptionalism 200–202, 221–2; climate change policy 330–31; consumer prices 24, 224–5, 227, 228; copyright system 267; enclosure acts 226, 323, 406; energy use 22, 231–2, 232–3, 342–3, 368, 430; ‘glorious revolution’ (1688) 223; income equality 18–19, 218; industrial revolution 201–2, 216–17, 220–32, 255–6, 258–9; life expectancy 15, 17–18; National Food Service 268; National Health Service 111, 261; parliamentary reform 107; per capita income 16, 218, 227, 285, 404–5; productivity 112; property rights 223, 226, 323–4; state benefits 16; tariffs 185–6, 186–7, 223; see also England; Scotland; Wales British Empire 161, 322 bronze 164, 168, 177 Brosnan, Sarah 59 Brown, Lester 147–8, 281–2, 300–301 Brown, Louise 306 Bruges 179 Brunel, Sir Marc 221 Buddhism 2, 172, 357 Buddle, John 412 Buffett, Warren 106, 268 Bulgaria 320 Burkina Faso 154 Burma 66, 67, 209, 335 Bush, George W. 161 Butler, Eamonn 105, 249 Byblos 167 Byzantium 176, 177, 179 cabbages 298 ‘Caesarism’ 289 Cairo 323 Calcutta 190, 315 Calico Act (1722) 226 Califano, Joseph 202–3 California: agriculture 150; Chumash people 62, 92–3; development of credit card 251, 254; Mojave Desert 69; Silicon Valley 221–2, 224, 257, 258, 259, 268 Cambodia 14, 315 camels 135, 176–7 camera pills 270–71 Cameroon 57 Campania 174, 175 Canaanites 166, 396 Canada 141, 169, 202, 238, 304, 305 Canal du Midi 251 cancer 14, 18, 293, 297–9, 302, 308, 329 Cannae, battle of 170 canning 186, 258 canoes 66, 67, 79, 82 capitalism 23–4, 101–4, 110, 115, 133, 214, 258–62, 291–2, 311; see also corporations; markets ‘Captain Swing’ 283 capuchin monkeys 96–7, 375 Caral, Peru 162–3 carbon dioxide emissions 340–47; absorption of 217; and agriculture 130, 337–8; and biofuels 242; costs of 331; and economic growth 315, 332; and fossil fuels 237, 315; and local sourcing of goods 41–2; taxes 346, 356 Cardwell’s Law 411 Caribbean see West Indies Carnegie, Andrew 23 Carney, Thomas 173 carnivorism 51, 60, 62, 68–9, 147, 156, 241, 376 carrots 153, 156 cars: biofuel for 240, 241; costs of 24, 252; efficiency of 252; future production 282, 355; hybrid 245; invention of 189, 270, 271; pollution from 17, 242; sport-utility vehicles 45 The Rational Optimist 424 Carson, Rachel 152, 297–8 Carter, Jimmy 238 Carthage 169, 170, 173 Cartwright, Edmund 221, 263 Castro, Fidel 187 Catalhoyuk 127 catallaxy 56, 355–9 Catholicism 105, 208, 306 cattle 122, 132, 145, 147, 148, 150, 197, 321, 336; see also beef Caucasus 237 cave paintings 2, 68, 73, 76–7 Cavendish, Henry 221 cement 283 central heating 16, 37 cereals 124–5, 125–6, 130–31, 143–4, 146–7, 158, 163; global harvests 121 Champlain, Samuel 138–9 charcoal 131, 216, 229, 230, 346 charitable giving 92, 105, 106, 295, 318–19, 356 Charles V: king of Spain 30–31; Holy Roman Emperor 184 Charles, Prince of Wales 291, 332 Chauvet Cave, France 2, 68, 73, 76–7 Chernobyl 283, 308, 345, 421 Chicago World Fair (1893) 346 chickens 122–3, 145–6, 147, 148, 408 chickpeas 125 Childe, Gordon 162 children: child labour 104, 188, 218, 220, 292; child molestation 104; childcare 2, 62–3; childhood diseases 310; mortality rates 14, 15, 16, 208–9, 284 Chile 187 chimpanzees 2, 3, 4, 6, 29, 59–60, 87, 88, 97 China: agriculture 123, 126, 148, 152, 220; birth rate 15, 200–201; coal supplies 229–30; Cultural Revolution 14, 201; diet 241; economic growth and industrialisation 17, 109, 180–81, 187, 201, 219, 220, 281–2, 300, 322, 324–5, 328, 358; economic and technological regression 180, 181–2, 193, 229–30, 255, 321, 357–8; energy use 245; income equality 19; innovations 181, 251; life expectancy 15; Longshan culture 397; Maoism 16, 187, 296, 311; Ming empire 117, 181–4, 260, 311; per capita income 15, 180; prehistoric 68, 123, 126; serfdom 181–2; Shang dynasty 166; Song dynasty 180–81; trade 172, 174–5, 177, 179, 183–4, 187, 225, 228 chlorine 296 cholera 40, 310 Chomsky, Noam 291 Christianity 172, 357, 358, 396; see also Catholicism; Church of England; monasteries Christmas 134 Chumash people 62, 92–3 Church of England 194 Churchill, Sir Winston 288 Cicero 173 Cilicia 173 Cisco Systems (corporation) 268 Cistercians 215 civil rights movement 108, 109 Clairvaux Abbey 215 Clark, Colin 146, 227 Clark, Gregory 193, 201, 401, 404 Clarke, Arthur C. 354 climate change 328–47, 426–30; costs of mitigation measures 330–32, 333, 338, 342–4; death rates associated with 335–7; and ecological dynamism 250, 329–30, 335, 339; and economic growth 315, 331–3, 341–3, 347; effects on ecosystems 338–41; and food supply 337–8; and fossil fuels 243, 314, 342, 346, 426; historic 194, 195, 329, 334, 426–7; pessimism about 280, 281, 314–15, 328–9; prehistoric 54, 65, 125, 127, 130, 160, 329, 334, 339, 340, 352; scepticism about 111, 329–30, 426; solutions to 8, 315, 345–7 Clinton, Bill 341 Clippinger, John 99 cloth trade 75, 159, 160, 165, 172, 177, 180, 194, 196, 225, 225–9, 232 clothes: Britain 224, 225, 227; early homo sapiens 71, 73; Inuits 64; metal age 122; Tasmanian natives 78 clothing prices 20, 34, 37, 40, 227, 228 ‘Club of Rome’ 302–3 coal: and economic take-off 201, 202, 213, 214, 216–17; and generation of electricity 233, 237, 239, 240, 304, 344; and industrialisation 229–33, 236, 407; prices 230, 232, 237; supplies 302–3 coal mining 132, 230–31, 237, 239, 257, 343 Coalbrookdale 407 Cobb, Kelly 35 Coca-Cola (corporation) 111, 263 coffee 298–9, 392 Cohen, Mark 135 Cold War 299 collective intelligence 5, 38–9, 46, 56, 83, 350–52, 355–6 Collier, Paul 315, 316–17 colonialism 160, 161, 187, 321–2; see also imperialism Colorado 324 Columbus, Christopher 91, 184 combine harvesters 158, 392 combined-cycle turbines 244, 410 commerce see trade Commoner, Barry 402 communism 106, 336 Compaq (corporation) 259 computer games 273, 292 computers 2, 3, 5, 211, 252, 260, 261, 263–4, 268, 282; computing power costs 24; information storage capacities 276; silicon chips 245, 263, 267–8; software 99, 257, 272–3, 304, 356; Y2K bug 280, 290, 341; see also internet Confucius 2, 181 Congo 14–15, 28, 307, 316 Congreve, Sir William 221 Connelly, Matthew 204 conservation, nature 324, 339; see also wilderness land, expansion of conservatism 109 Constantinople 175, 177 consumer spending, average 39–40 containerisation 113, 253, 386 continental drift 274 contraception 208, 210; coerced 203–4 Cook, Captain James 91 cooking 4, 29, 38, 50, 51, 52, 55, 60–61, 64, 163, 337 copper 122, 123, 131–2, 160, 162, 164, 165, 168, 213, 223, 302, 303 copyright 264, 266–7, 326 coral reefs 250, 339–40, 429–30 Cordoba 177 corn laws 185–6 Cornwall 132 corporations 110–116, 355; research and development budgets 260, 262, 269 Cosmides, Leda 57 Costa Rica 338 cotton 37, 108, 149, 151–2, 162, 163, 171, 172, 202, 225–9, 230, 407; calico 225–6, 232; spinning and weaving 184, 214, 217, 219–20, 227–8, 232, 256, 258, 263, 283 Coughlin, Father Charles 109 Craigslist (website) 273, 356 Crapper, Thomas 38 Crathis river 171 creationists 358 creative destruction 114, 356 credit cards 251, 254 credit crunch (2008) 8–10, 28–9, 31, 100, 102, 316, 355, 399, 411 Cree Indians 62 Crete 167, 169 Crichton, Michael 254 Crick, Francis 412 crime: cyber-crime 99–100, 357; falling rates 106, 201; false convictions 19–20; homicide 14, 20, 85, 88, 106, 118, 201; illegal drugs 106, 186; pessimism about 288, 293 Crimea 171 crocodiles, deaths by 40 Crompton, Samuel 227 Crookes, Sir William 140, 141 cruelty 104, 106, 138–9, 146 crusades 358 Cuba 187, 299 ‘curse of resources’ 31, 320 cyber-crime 99–100, 357 Cyprus 132, 148, 167, 168 Cyrus the Great 169 Dalkon Shield (contraceptive device) 203 Dalton, John 221 Damascus 127 Damerham, Wiltshire 194 Danube, River 128, 132 Darby, Abraham 407 Darfur 302, 353 Dark Ages 164, 175–6, 215 Darwin, Charles 77, 81, 91–2, 105, 116, 350, 415 Darwin, Erasmus 256 Darwinism 5 Davy, Sir Humphry 221, 412 Dawkins, Richard 5, 51 DDT (pesticide) 297–8, 299 de Geer, Louis 184 de Soto, Hernando 323, 324, 325 de Waal, Frans 88 Dean, James 110 decimal system 173, 178 deer 32–3, 122 deflation 24 Defoe, Daniel 224 deforestation, predictions of 304–5, 339 Delhi 189 Dell (corporation) 268 Dell, Michael 264 demographic transition 206–212, 316, 328, 402 Denmark 200, 344, 366; National Academy of Sciences 280 Dennett, Dan 350 dentistry 45 depression (psychological) 8, 156 depressions (economic) 3, 31, 32, 186–7, 192, 289; see also economic crashes deserts, expanding 28, 280 Detroit 315, 355 Dhaka 189 diabetes 156, 274, 306 Diamond, Jared 293–4, 380 diamonds 320, 322 Dickens, Charles 220 Diesel, Rudolf 146 Digital Equipment Corporation 260, 282 digital photography 114, 386 Dimawe, battle of (1852) 321 Diocletian, Roman emperor 175, 184 Diodorus 169 diprotodons 69 discount merchandising 112–14 division of labour: Adam Smith on vii, 80; and catallaxy 56; and fragmented government 172; in insects 75–6, 87–8; and population growth 211; by sex 61–5, 136, 376; and specialisation 7, 33, 38, 46, 61, 76–7, 175; among strangers and enemies 87–9; and trust 100; and urbanisation 164 DNA: forensic use 20; gene transfer 153 dogs 43, 56, 61, 84, 125 Doll, Richard 298 Dolphin, HMS 169 dolphins 3, 87 Domesday Book 215 Doriot, Georges 261 ‘dot-communism’ 356 Dover Castle 197 droughts: modern 241, 300, 334; prehistoric 54, 65, 334 drug crime 106, 186 DuPont (corporation) 31 dyes 167, 225, 257, 263 dynamos 217, 233–4, 271–2, 289 dysentery 157, 353 eagles 17, 239, 299, 409 East India Company 225, 226 Easter Island 380 Easterbrook, Greg 294, 300, 370 Easterlin, Richard 26 Easterly, William 318, 411 eBay (corporation) 21, 99, 100, 114, 115 Ebla, Syria 164 Ebola virus 307 economic booms 9, 29, 216 economic crashes 7–8, 9, 193; credit crunch (2008) 8–10, 28–9, 31, 100, 102, 316, 355, 399, 411; see also depressions (economic) ecosystems, dynamism of 250–51, 303, 410 Ecuador 87 Edinburgh Review 285 Edison, Thomas 234, 246, 272, 412 education: Africa 320; Japan 16; measuring value of 117; and population control 209, 210; universal access 106, 235; women and 209, 210 Edwards, Robert 306 Eemian interglacial period 52–3 Egypt: ancient 161, 166, 167, 170, 171, 192, 193, 197, 270, 334; Mamluk 182; modern 142, 154, 192, 301, 323; prehistoric 44, 45, 125, 126; Roman 174, 175, 178 Ehrenreich, Barbara 291 Ehrlich, Anne 203, 301–2 Ehrlich, Paul 143, 190, 203, 207, 301–2, 303 electric motors 271–2, 283 electricity 233–5, 236, 237, 245–6, 337, 343–4; costs 23; dynamos 217, 233–4, 271–2, 289 elephants 51, 54, 69, 303, 321 Eliot, T.S. 289 email 292 emigration 199–200, 202; see also migrations empathy 94–8 empires, trading 160–61; see also imperialism enclosure acts 226, 323, 406 endocrine disruptors 293 Engels, Friedrich 107–8, 136 England: agriculture 194–6, 215; infant mortality 284; law 118; life expectancy 13, 284; medieval population 194–7; per capita income 196; scientific revolution 255–7; trade 75, 89, 104, 106, 118, 169, 194; see also Britain Enron (corporation) 29, 111, 385 Erie, Lake 17 Erie Canal 139, 283 ethanol 240–42, 300 Ethiopia 14, 316, 319; prehistoric 52, 53, 129 eugenics 288, 329 Euphrates river 127, 158, 161, 167, 177 evolution, biological 5, 6, 7, 49–50, 55–6, 75, 271, 350 Ewald, Paul 309 exchange: etiquette and ritual of 133–4; and innovation 71–2, 76, 119, 167–8, 251, 269–74; and pre-industrial economies 133–4; and property rights 324–5; and rule of law 116, 117–18; and sexual division of labour 65; and specialisation 7, 10, 33, 35, 37–8, 46, 56, 58, 75, 90, 132–3, 350–52, 355, 358–9; and trust 98–100, 103, 104; as unique human trait 56–60; and virtue 100–104; see also bartering; markets; trade executions 104 extinctions 17, 43, 64, 68, 69–70, 243, 293, 302, 338–9 Exxon (corporation) 111, 115 eye colour 129 Ezekiel 167, 168 Facebook (website) 262, 268, 356 factories 160, 214, 218, 219–20, 221, 223, 256, 258–9, 284–5 falcons 299 family formation 195, 209–210, 211, 227 famines: modern 141, 143, 154, 199, 203, 302; pessimism about 280, 281, 284, 290, 300–302, 314; pre-industrial 45, 139, 195, 197 Faraday, Michael 271–2 Fargione, Joseph 242 farming: battery 104, 145–6; free-range 146, 308; intensive 143–9; organic 147, 149–52, 393; slash-and-burn 87, 129, 130; subsidies 188, 328; subsistence 87, 138, 175–6, 189, 192, 199–200; see also agriculture; food supply fascism 289 Fauchart, Emmanuelle 264 fax machines 252 Feering, Essex 195 Fehr, Ernst 94–6 female emancipation 107, 108–9, 209 feminism 109 Ferguson, Adam 1 Ferguson, Niall 85 Fermat’s Last Theorem 275 fermenting 130, 241 Ferranti, Sebastian de 234 Fertile Crescent 126, 251 fertilisation, in-vitro 306 fertilisers 32, 129, 135, 139–41, 142, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149–50, 152, 155, 200, 337 Fibonacci 178 figs 125, 129 filariasis 310 Finland 15, 35, 261 fire, invention of 4, 50, 51, 52, 60, 274 First World War 289, 309 fish, sex-change 280, 293 fish farming 148, 155 fishing 62, 63–4, 71, 78–9, 81–2, 125, 127, 129, 136, 159, 162, 163, 327 Fishman, Charles 113 Flanders 179, 181, 194 flight, powered 257, 261, 264, 266 Flinders Island 81, 84 floods 128, 250, 329, 331, 334, 335, 426 Florence 89, 103, 115, 178 flowers, cut 42, 327, 328 flu, pandemic 28, 145–6, 308–310 Flynn, James 19 Fontaine, Hippolyte 233–4 food aid 28, 141, 154, 203 food miles 41–2, 353, 392; see also local sourcing food preservation 139, 145, 258 food prices 20, 22, 23, 34, 39, 40, 42, 240, 241, 300 food processing 29–30, 60–61, 145; see also baking; cooking food retailing 36, 112, 148, 268; see also supermarkets food sharing 56, 59–60, 64 food supply: and biofuels 240–41, 243, 300; and climate change 337–8; and industrialisation 139, 201–2; pessimism about 280, 281, 284, 290, 300–302; and population growth 139, 141, 143–4, 146–7, 192, 206, 208–9, 300–302 Ford, Ford Maddox 188 Ford, Henry 24, 114, 189, 271 Forester, Jay 303 forests, fears of depletion 304–5, 339 fossil fuels: and ecology 237, 240, 304, 315, 342–3, 345–6; fertilisers 143, 150, 155, 237; and industrialisation 214, 216–17, 229–33, 352; and labour saving 236–7; and productivity 244–5; supplies 216–17, 229–30, 237–8, 245, 302–3; see also charcoal; coal; gas, natural; oil; peat Fourier analysis 283 FOXP2 (gene) 55, 375 fragmentation, political 170–73, 180–81, 184, 185 France: capital markets 259; famine 197; infant mortality 16; population growth 206, 208; revolution 324; trade 184, 186, 222 Franco, Francisco 186 Frank, Robert 95–6 Franken, Al 291 Franklin, Benjamin 107, 256 Franks 176 Fray Bentos 186 free choice 27–8, 107–110, 291–2 free-range farming 146, 308 French Revolution 324 Friedel, Robert 224 Friedman, Milton 111 Friend, Sir Richard 257 Friends of the Earth 154, 155 Fry, Art 261 Fuji (corporation) 114, 386 Fujian, China 89, 183 fur trade 169, 180 futurology 354–5 Gadir (Cadiz) 168–9, 170 Gaelic language 129 Galbraith, J.K. 16 Galdikas, Birute 60 Galilee, Sea of 124 Galileo 115 Gandhi, Indira 203, 204 Gandhi, Sanjay 203–4 Ganges, River 147, 172 gas, natural 235, 236, 237, 240, 302, 303, 337 Gates, Bill 106, 264, 268 GDP per capita (world), increases in 11, 349 Genentech (corporation) 259, 405 General Electric Company 261, 264 General Motors (corporation) 115 generosity 86–7, 94–5 genetic research 54, 151, 265, 306–7, 310, 356, 358 genetically modified (GM) crops 28, 32, 148, 151–6, 283, 358 Genghis Khan 182 Genoa 89, 169, 178, 180 genome sequencing 265 geothermal power 246, 344 Germany: Great Depression (1930s) 31; industrialisation 202; infant mortality 16; Nazism 109, 289; population growth 202; predicted deforestation 304, 305; prehistoric 70, 138; trade 179–80, 187; see also West Germany Ghana 187, 189, 316, 326 Gibraltar, Strait of 180 gift giving 87, 92, 133, 134 Gilbert, Daniel 4 Gilgamesh, King 159 Ginsberg, Allen 110 Gintis, Herb 86 Gladstone, William 237 Glaeser, Edward 190 Glasgow 315 glass 166, 174–5, 177, 259 glass fibre 303 Global Humanitarian Forum 337 global warming see climate change globalisation 290, 358 ‘glorious revolution’ (1688) 223 GM (genetically modified) crops 28, 148, 151–6, 283, 358 goats 122, 126, 144, 145, 197, 320 Goethe, Johann von 104 Goklany, Indur 143–4, 341, 426 gold 165, 177, 303 golden eagles 239, 409 golden toads 338 Goldsmith, Edward 291 Google (corporation) 21, 100, 114, 259, 260, 268, 355 Gore, Al 233, 291 Goths 175 Gott, Richard 294 Gramme, Zénobe Théophile 233–4 Grantham, George 401 gravity, discovery of 258 Gray, John 285, 291 Great Barrier Reef 250 Greece: ancient 115, 128, 161, 170–71, 173–4; modern 186 greenhouse gases 152, 155, 242, 329; see also carbon dioxide emissions Greenland: ice cap 125, 130, 313, 334, 339, 426; Inuits 61; Norse 380 Greenpeace 154, 155, 281, 385 Grottes des Pigeons, Morocco 53 Groves, Leslie 412 Growth is Good for the Poor (World Bank study) 317 guano 139–40, 302 Guatemala 209 Gujarat 162, 174 Gujaratis 89 Gustavus Adolphus, King of Sweden 184 Gutenberg, Johann 184, 253 Guth, Werner 86 habeas corpus 358 Haber, Fritz 140, 412 Hadza people 61, 63, 87 Haiti 14, 301, 315 Halaf people 130 Hall, Charles Martin 24 Halley, Edmond 256 HANPP (human appropriation of net primary productivity) number 144–5 Hanseatic merchants 89, 179–80, 196 Hansen, James 426 hanta virus 307 happiness 25–8, 191 Harappa, Indus valley 161–2 Hardin, Garrett 203 harems 136 Hargreaves, James 227, 256 Harlem, Holland 215–16 Harper’s Weekly 23 Harvey, William 256 hay 214–15, 216, 239, 408–9 Hayek, Friedrich 5, 19, 38, 56, 250, 280, 355 heart disease 18, 156, 295 ‘hedonic treadmill’ 27 height, average human 16, 18 Heller, Michael 265–6 Hellespont 128, 170 Henrich, Joe 77, 377 Henry II, King of England 118 Henry, Joseph 271, 272 Henry, William 221 Heraclitus 251 herbicides 145, 152, 153–4 herding 130–31 Hero of Alexandria 270 Herschel, Sir William 221 Hesiod 292 Hippel, Eric von 273 hippies 26, 110, 175 Hiroshima 283 Hitler, Adolf 16, 184, 296 Hittites 166, 167 HIV/AIDS 8, 14, 307–8, 310, 316, 319, 320, 322, 331, 353 Hiwi people 61 Hobbes, Thomas 96 Hock, Dee 254 Hohle Fels, Germany 70 Holdren, John 203, 207, 311 Holland: agriculture 153; golden age 185, 201, 215–16, 223; horticulture 42; industrialisation 215–16, 226; innovations 264; trade 31, 89, 104, 106, 185, 223, 328 Holy Roman Empire 178, 265–6 Homer 2, 102, 168 Homestead Act (1862) 323 homicide 14, 20, 85, 88, 106, 118, 201 Homo erectus 49, 68, 71, 373 Homo heidelbergensis 49, 50–52, 373 Homo sapiens, emergence of 52–3 Hong Kong 31, 83, 158, 169, 187, 219, 328 Hongwu, Chinese emperor 183 Hood, Leroy 222, 405 Hooke, Robert 256 horses 48, 68, 69, 129, 140, 197, 215, 282, 408–9; shoes and harnesses 176, 215 housing costs 20, 25, 34, 39–40, 234, 368 Hoxha, Enver 187 Hrdy, Sarah 88 Huber, Peter 244, 344 Hueper, Wilhelm 297 Huguenots 184 Huia (birds) 64 human sacrifice 104 Hume, David 96, 103, 104, 170 humour 2 Hunan 177 Hungary 222 Huns 175 hunter-gatherers: consumption and production patterns 29–30, 123; division of labour 61–5, 76, 136; famines 45, 139; limitations of band size 77; modern societies 66–7, 76, 77–8, 80, 87, 135–6, 136–7; nomadism 130; nostalgia for life of 43–5, 135, 137; permanent settlements 128; processing of food 29, 38, 61; technological regress 78–84; trade 72, 77–8, 81, 92–3, 123, 136–7; violence and warfare 27, 44–5, 136, 137 hunting 61–4, 68–70, 125–6, 130, 339 Huron Indians 138–9 hurricanes 329, 335, 337 Hurst, Blake 152 Hutterites 211 Huxley, Aldous 289, 354 hydroelectric power 236, 239, 343, 344, 409 hyenas 43, 50, 54 IBM (corporation) 260, 261, 282 Ibn Khaldun 182 ice ages 52, 127, 329, 335, 340, 388 ice caps 125, 130, 313, 314, 334, 338–9, 426 Iceland 324 Ichaboe island 140 ‘idea-agora’ 262 imitation 4, 5, 6, 50, 77, 80 imperialism 104, 162, 164, 166, 172, 182, 319–20, 357; see also colonialism in-vitro fertilisation 306 income, per capita: and economic freedom 117; equality 18–19, 218–19; increases in 14, 15, 16–17, 218–19, 285, 331–2 India: agriculture 126, 129, 141, 142–3, 147, 151–2, 156, 301; British rule 160; caste system 173; economic growth 187, 358; energy use 245; income equality 19; infant mortality 16; innovations 172–3, 251; Mauryan empire 172–3, 201, 357; mobile phone use 327; population growth 202, 203–4; prehistoric 66, 126, 129; trade 174–5, 175, 179, 186–7, 225, 228, 232; urbanisation 189 Indian Ocean 174, 175 Indonesia 66, 87, 89, 177 Indus river 167 Indus valley civilisation 161–2, 164 industrialisation: and capital investment 258–9; and end of slavery 197, 214; and food production 139, 201–2; and fossil fuels 214, 216–17, 229–33, 352; and innovation 38, 220–24, 227–8; and living standards 217–20, 226–7, 258; pessimistic views of 42, 102–3, 217–18, 284–5; and productivity 227–8, 230–31, 232, 235–6, 244–5; and science 255–8; and trade 224–6; and urbanisation 188, 226–7 infant mortality 14, 15, 16, 208–9, 284 inflation 24, 30, 169, 289 influenza see flu, pandemic Ingleheart, Ronald 27 innovation: and capital investment 258–62, 269; and exchange 71–2, 76, 119, 167–8, 251, 269–74; and government spending programmes 267–9; increasing returns of 248–55, 274–7, 346, 354, 358–9; and industrialisation 38, 220–24, 227–8; and intellectual property 262–7, 269; limitlessness 374–7; and population growth 252; and productivity 227–8; and science 255–8, 412; and specialisation 56, 71–2, 73–4, 76–7, 119, 251; and trade 168, 171 insect-resistant crops 154–5 insecticides 151–2 insects 75–6, 87–8 insulin 156, 274 Intel (corporation) 263, 268 intellectual property 262–7; see also copyright; patents intensive farming 143–9 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 330, 331, 332, 333–4, 338, 342, 347, 425, 426, 427, 428 internal combustion engine 140, 146, 244 International Planned Parenthood Foundation 203 internet: access to 253, 268; blogging 257; and charitable giving 318–19, 356; cyber-crime 99–100, 357; development of 263, 268, 270, 356; email 292; free exchange 105, 272–3, 356; packet switching 263; problem-solving applications 261–2; search engines 245, 256, 267; shopping 37, 99, 107, 261; social networking websites 262, 268, 356; speed of 252, 253; trust among users 99–100, 356; World Wide Web 273, 356 Inuits 44, 61, 64, 126 IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) 330, 331, 332, 333–4, 338, 342, 347, 349, 425, 426, 427, 428 IQ levels 19 Iran 162 Iraq 31, 158, 161 Ireland 24, 129, 199, 227 iron 166, 167, 169, 181, 184, 223, 229, 230, 302, 407 irradiated food 150–51 irrigation 136, 147–8, 159, 161, 163, 198, 242, 281 Isaac, Glyn 64 Isaiah 102, 168 Islam 176, 357, 358 Israel 53, 69, 124, 148 Israelites 168 Italy: birth rate 208; city states 178–9, 181, 196; fascism 289; Greek settlements 170–71, 173–4; infant mortality 15; innovations 196, 251; mercantilism 89, 103, 178–9, 180, 196; prehistoric 69 ivory 70, 71, 73, 167 Jacob, François 7 Jacobs, Jane 128 Jamaica 149 James II, King 223 Japan: agriculture 197–8; birth rates 212; dictatorship 109; economic development 103, 322, 332; economic and technological regression 193, 197–9, 202; education 16; happiness 27; industrialisation 219; life expectancy 17, 31; trade 31, 183, 184, 187, 197 Jarawa tribe 67 Java 187 jealousy 2, 351 Jebel Sahaba cemeteries, Egypt 44, 45 Jefferson, Thomas 247, 249, 269 Jenner, Edward 221 Jensen, Robert 327 Jericho 127, 138 Jevons, Stanley 213, 237, 245 Jews 89, 108, 177–8, 184 Jigme Singye Wangchuck, King of Bhutan 25–6 Jobs, Steve 221, 264, 405 John, King of England 118 Johnson, Lyndon 202–3 Jones, Rhys 79 Jordan 148, 167 Jordan river 127 Joyce, James 289 justice 19–20, 116, 320, 358 Kalahari desert 44, 61, 76 Kalkadoon aborigines 91 Kanesh, Anatolia 165 Kangaroo Island 81 kangaroos 62, 63, 69–70, 84, 127 Kant, Immanuel 96 Kaplan, Robert 293 Kay, John 184, 227 Kazakhstan 206 Kealey, Terence 172, 255, 411 Kelly, Kevin 356 Kelvin, William Thomson, 1st Baron 412 Kenya 42, 87, 155, 209, 316, 326, 336, 353 Kerala 327 Kerouac, Jack 110 Khoisan people 54, 61, 62, 67, 116, 321 Kim Il Sung 187 King, Gregory 218 Kingdon, Jonathan 67 Kinneret, Lake 124 Klasies River 83 Klein, Naomi 291 Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (venture capitalists) 259 knowledge, increasing returns of 248–50, 274–7 Kodak (corporation) 114, 386 Kohler, Hans-Peter 212 Korea 184, 197, 300; see also North Korea; South Korea Kuhn, Steven 64, 69 kula (exchange system) 134 !


pages: 470 words: 144,455

Secrets and Lies: Digital Security in a Networked World by Bruce Schneier

Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, business process, butterfly effect, cashless society, Columbine, defense in depth, double entry bookkeeping, fault tolerance, game design, IFF: identification friend or foe, John von Neumann, knapsack problem, MITM: man-in-the-middle, moral panic, mutually assured destruction, pez dispenser, pirate software, profit motive, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, slashdot, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, Steven Levy, the payments system, Y2K, Yogi Berra

It is vital to understand the real threats to a system, design a security policy commensurate with those threats, and build in appropriate security countermeasures from the beginning. Remember that perfect solutions are not required, but systems that can be completely broken are unacceptable. And good security processes are essential to make products work. It is prudent to prepare for the worst. Attacks and attackers always get better, and systems fielded today could be in place 20 years from now. The real lesson of Y2K was the amount of ancient computer code out there: code that was updated for Y2K compliance rather than replaced. We’re still stuck with mistakes made in analog cellular systems decades ago, and digital cellular systems years ago. We’re still stuck with an insecure Internet, and insecure password-protected systems. But by the same token, we’re still stuck with insecure door locks, assailable financial systems, and an imperfect legal system.

Insiders don’t always attack a system;sometimes they subvert a system for their own ends. In 1991, employees at Charles Schwab in San Francisco used the company’s e-mail system to buy and sell cocaine. A convicted child rapist working in a Boston-area hospital stole a co-worker’s password, paged through confidential patient records, and made obscene phone calls. Insiders are not necessarily employees. They can be consultants and contractors. During the Y2K scare, many companies hired programmers from China and India to update old software. Rampant xenophobia aside, any of those programmers could have attacked the systems as an insider. Most computer security measures—firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and so on—try to deal with the external attacker, but are pretty much powerless against insiders. Insiders might be less likely to attack a system than outsiders are, but systems are far more vulnerable to them.

Report the customer’s card as stolen or compromised. Physically damage or destroy the customer’s card. Denial-of-service attacks on a bank: Interfere with communications with customers or merchants. Physically damage or destroy the bank’s secure hardware. And systemwide denial-of-service attacks: Somehow force the system to upgrade itself, before anyone knows how to deal with it. (You can think of this attack as Y2K.) Deny service to many or all banks. Interfere with communications with customers or merchants. Destroy top-level certifying public key in PKI-based systems. We can also use criminal attacks to destabilize the system: Start mass-producing counterfeit cards. Use massive, widespread fraud to bring down system. Finally, let’s talk about using the system to commit a crime. In the context of this system, crime means violating the laws by using the system.


Bleeding Edge by Pynchon, Thomas

addicted to oil, AltaVista, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, Bernie Madoff, big-box store, Burning Man, carried interest, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, East Village, Hacker Ethic, index card, invisible hand, jitney, late capitalism, margin call, Network effects, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, pre–internet, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, rent control, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, telemarketer, Y2K

It soon becomes clear that everybody’s pretending for tonight that they’re still in the pre-crash fantasy years, dancing in the shadow of last year’s dreaded Y2K, now safely history, but according to this consensual delusion not quite upon them yet, with all here remaining freeze-framed back at the Cinderella moment of midnight of the millennium when in the next nanosecond the world’s computers will fail to increment the year correctly and bring down the Apocalypse. What passes for nostalgia in a time of widespread Attention Deficit Disorder. People have pulled their pre-millennial T-shirts back out of the archival plastic they’ve been idling in—Y2K IS NEAR, ARMAGEDDON EVE, Y2K COMPLIANT LOVE MACHINE, I SURVIVED . . . Determined, as Prince can be heard repeatedly urging, to party like it’s 1999. The Soviet-era sound system, looted from a failed arena somewhere in Eastern Europe, is also blasting Blink-182, Echo and the Bunnymen, Barenaked Ladies, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, and other sentimental oldies while vintage stock quotations from the boom-years NASDAQ crawl along a ticker display on a frieze running the full perimeter of the ballroom, beneath giant four-by-six-meter LED screens onto which bloom and fade loops of historical highlights like Bill Clinton’s grand-jury testimony, “It depends upon what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is,” the other Bill, Gates, getting a pie in the face in Belgium, the announcement trailer for Halo, clips from the Dilbert animated TV series and the first season of SpongeBob, Roman Coppola’s Boo.com commercials, Monica Lewinsky hosting SNL, Susan Lucci finally winning a Daytime Emmy for Erica Kane, with Urge Overkill’s song of the same name deejayed in as accompaniment.

For recessional music there’s “Closing Time” by Semisonic, a four-chord farewell to the old century. Former and future nerdistocracy slowly, and to look at them you’d think reluctantly, filtering back out into the street, into the long September which has been with them in a virtual way since spring before last, continuing only to deepen. Putting their street faces back on for it. Faces already under silent assault, as if by something ahead, some Y2K of the workweek that no one is quite imagining, the crowds drifting slowly out into the little legendary streets, the highs beginning to dissipate, out into the casting-off of veils before the luminosities of dawn, a sea of T-shirts nobody’s reading, a clamor of messages nobody’s getting, as if it’s the true text history of nights in the Alley, outcries to be attended to and not be lost, the 3:00 AM kozmo deliveries to code sessions and all-night shredding parties, the bedfellows who came and went, the bands in the clubs, the songs whose hooks still wait to ambush an idle hour, the day jobs with meetings about meetings and bosses without clue, the unreal strings of zeros, the business models changing one minute to the next, the start-up parties every night of the week and more on Thursdays than you could keep track of, which of these faces so claimed by the time, the epoch whose end they’ve been celebrating all night—which of them can see ahead, among the microclimates of binary, tracking earthwide everywhere through dark fiber and twisted pairs and nowadays wirelessly through spaces private and public, anywhere among cybersweatshop needles flashing and never still, in that unquiet vastly stitched and unstitched tapestry they have all at some time sat growing crippled in the service of—to the shape of the day imminent, a procedure waiting execution, about to be revealed, a search result with no instructions on how to look for it?


The Code: Silicon Valley and the Remaking of America by Margaret O'Mara

"side hustle", A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, accounting loophole / creative accounting, affirmative action, Airbnb, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, autonomous vehicles, back-to-the-land, barriers to entry, Ben Horowitz, Berlin Wall, Bob Noyce, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, business climate, Byte Shop, California gold rush, carried interest, clean water, cleantech, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer age, continuous integration, cuban missile crisis, Danny Hillis, DARPA: Urban Challenge, deindustrialization, different worldview, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Doomsday Clock, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Frank Gehry, George Gilder, gig economy, Googley, Hacker Ethic, high net worth, Hush-A-Phone, immigration reform, income inequality, informal economy, information retrieval, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, Joan Didion, job automation, job-hopping, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kitchen Debate, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, mass immigration, means of production, mega-rich, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, millennium bug, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, mutually assured destruction, new economy, Norbert Wiener, old-boy network, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Paul Terrell, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, pets.com, pirate software, popular electronics, pre–internet, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Snapchat, social graph, software is eating the world, speech recognition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, supercomputer in your pocket, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, the market place, the new new thing, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, Thomas L Friedman, Tim Cook: Apple, transcontinental railway, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Unsafe at Any Speed, upwardly mobile, Vannevar Bush, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, Y Combinator, Y2K

Neukom quoted in David Lawsky, “Microsoft Urges Government to Drop Antitrust Case,” Reuters, reprinted in The Times of India, November 26, 1998, 15; also see Steve Lohr, “Microsoft Presses Its View About Rivals’ 3-Way Deal,” The New York Times, January 7, 1999, C2. 17. Lizette Alvarez, “High-Tech Industry, Long Shy of Politics, Is Now Belle of Ball,” The New York Times, December 26, 1999, 1. 18. Hiren Shah, “Y2K: The Bug of the Millennium,” The Times of India, October 19, 1998, 14; Stephen Barr, “Social Security Killed Y2K Bug, President Says,” The Washington Post, December 29, 1998, A2; Eric Lipton, “2-Digit Problem Means 9-Digit Bill for Local Governments,” The Washington Post, August 4, 1998, A1. 19. Abhi Raghunathan, “Thanks for Coming. Now Go,” The New York Times, July 15, 2001, NJ1. 20. Kathleen Kenna, “Commander in Geek,” Toronto Star, May 24, 1999, 1; Paul A.

In a two-part deal announced soon after the case began, AOL acquired Netscape and then teamed up with Sun to build up an Internet software juggernaut that could keep up with Microsoft’s dominance of business and consumer markets. Microsoft counsel Bill Neukom cried foul—how could the DOJ call Microsoft a monopoly when its competitors were all banding together to take it on? The government was “five steps behind the industry.”16 Y2K While Microsoft was getting skewered, Silicon Valley was riding high—not just on a soaring Wall Street, but especially in Washington, where politicians flocked toward the combined allure of gee-whiz technology and new-economy wealth. Scandal and partisan intrigue ruled the day in Washington, as Clinton’s transgression with young White House intern Monica Lewinsky turned from titillating gossip to fodder for a special prosecutor to an impeachment vote by the GOP-led House.

Faced with high bills and a shortage of talent, corporate giants and governments looked overseas—to the large, educated, and often English-speaking workforce of India, a country whose own tech sector had exploded in size as its national government deregulated its economy over the previous decade. India also had spent heftily on broadband infrastructure, meaning that cities like the high-tech hub of Bangalore had more reliable Internet connectivity than electricity, and its homegrown software services companies could easily take on the job of programming computers on the other side of the globe. The Y2K flurry also grew the already large numbers of engineers heading across the Pacific. Over 130,000 new H-1B visa holders came to the U.S. between the spring of 1998 and the summer of 1999. Forty percent of them were Indian computer specialists.19 PLAYING OFFENSE The ever-tightening friendship between John Doerr and the man he affectionately called “the commander-in-geek,” Al Gore, epitomized the warm relations between high-tech and political capitals in those waning days of the twentieth century.


pages: 319 words: 106,772

Irrational Exuberance: With a New Preface by the Author by Robert J. Shiller

Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, banking crisis, Benoit Mandelbrot, business cycle, buy and hold, computer age, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, demographic transition, diversification, diversified portfolio, equity premium, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, experimental subject, hindsight bias, income per capita, index fund, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Joseph Schumpeter, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, mandelbrot fractal, market bubble, market design, market fundamentalism, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, Milgram experiment, money market fund, moral hazard, new economy, open economy, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, price anchoring, random walk, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Small Order Execution System, spice trade, statistical model, stocks for the long run, survivorship bias, the market place, Tobin tax, transaction costs, tulip mania, urban decay, Y2K

To be sure, experts’ opinions sometimes tag along with news stories about price movements, but they are seldom vivid enough to become the focus of word-of-mouth communications by themselves. Word-of-mouth communications, either positive or negative, are an essential part of the propagation of speculative bubbles, and the word-of-mouth potential of any event must be weighed in judging the likelihood of that event to lead to a speculative bubble. Thus, for example, the predictions of widespread computer problems due to the so-called Y2K bug was a classic word-of-mouth story because of its association with both the nation’s fascination with computers and the new millennium. Thus—although fears ultimately provided groundless—it was likely to have an exaggerated impact on the market when compared with other less vivid stories. A Pool of Conflicting Ideas Coexisting in the Human Mind One reason why the contagion of ideas can sometimes happen rapidly, and why public thinking can experience such abrupt turnarounds, is that the ideas in question are already in our minds.

We may list some of them, with no 210 A C ALL TO AC TION presumption that any of these is more or less likely at the present time: a decline in consumer demand, a dearth of new development opportunities, failures of major technological initiatives, heightened foreign competition, a resurgent labor movement, an oil crisis, a corporate tax increase, newly discovered problems with the longerrun consequences of downsizing and incentive-based compensation for employees, a decline in employee morale and productivity, a war (even one among foreign countries, which disrupts our own trade or destroys a stable environment for economic operations), a terrorist attack or even a new terrorist threat that hampers business activities, an industrial accident that suggests that certain technical processes are more dangerous than previously thought, heightened regulatory or antitrust activity, increased foreign tariffs or import quotas, a depression abroad, stricter environmental standards, class-action lawsuits against corporations, a suddenly erratic monetary policy, systemic problems due to a failure of major banks or financial institutions, a widespread computer system problem in the same vein as the once-predicted Y2K-related malfunctions or an unstoppable computer virus or communications satellite problems, large-scale weather problems, natural disasters, epidemics. . . . The list can never be complete. Indeed, some of the items on this list were virtually unknown a decade ago. With so many possible causes, we are left now, as always, with the daunting problem of assessing not only their various probabilities—each of them by itself small and hard to quantify—but also the probabilities of several of them happening together, which would make the combined effect all the more serious.

., 107 Warr, Richard, 240n30 Warther, Vincent, 240n27 Watson, James, 85 Wealth tax, 126 Weber, Steven, 113 Weiss, Allan, 230, 266–67n29–30 Welch, Ivo, 256n5 Wheel of fortune, 137 Whisper numbers, 239n20 Williams, Arlington, 244n22 Wilson, Timothy, 257n19 Winfrey, Oprah, 51 Winner stocks, 130 Womack, Kent, 239n18 Woodford, Michael, 244n22 Word-of-mouth communications, 98, 163, 228; epidemic models applied to, 157–62; information processing and, 153–54; media communications versus, 154–57 World Bank, 238n11 World War I, 194 World War II, 7, 107, 194 World Wide Web, 19, 212 Wurgler, Jeffrey, 237n1, 238n9, 258n14 Xerox, 177 Yale University, 264n7 Yen, 223 Y2K bug, 162 Zacks Investment Research, 30 Zaret, David, 245n1 Zeldes, Stephen, 265n15 Zemsky, Peter, 256n6 Zero earnings, 236n4 Zero era, 112–13 Zuckerman, Marvin, 254n7


pages: 349 words: 114,038

Culture & Empire: Digital Revolution by Pieter Hintjens

4chan, airport security, AltaVista, anti-communist, anti-pattern, barriers to entry, Bill Duvall, bitcoin, blockchain, business climate, business intelligence, business process, Chelsea Manning, clean water, commoditize, congestion charging, Corn Laws, correlation does not imply causation, cryptocurrency, Debian, Edward Snowden, failed state, financial independence, Firefox, full text search, German hyperinflation, global village, GnuPG, Google Chrome, greed is good, Hernando de Soto, hiring and firing, informal economy, intangible asset, invisible hand, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Rulifson, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, M-Pesa, mass immigration, mass incarceration, mega-rich, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, national security letter, Nelson Mandela, new economy, New Urbanism, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, packet switching, patent troll, peak oil, pre–internet, private military company, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, reserve currency, RFC: Request For Comment, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, security theater, selection bias, Skype, slashdot, software patent, spectrum auction, Steve Crocker, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stuxnet, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, trade route, transaction costs, twin studies, union organizing, wealth creators, web application, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero day, Zipf's Law

Google also threw all the clutter off the main page. Less is more. The dot-com boom bubbled in 1999, driven by the dream of cheap access to millions -- no, billions -- of consumers. Investors threw huge amounts of money at firms whose business plan typically went: "1. Give people something free. 2. ??? 3. Profit!" In 2000, the dot-com bubble burst, mainly because big firms had spent so much cash on solving the millennium Y2K "crisis" that they had to freeze all new IT spending for two or three years. Big IT firms' profits fell, investors panicked, the stock market collapsed, and so did most dot-com firms. Most of those companies' business plans were empty anyway. In 1999, Napster started to let people trade songs on line. It was blatantly illegal and incredibly popular. Napster was almost immediately sued and shut down by lawsuits in 2001, the same year that Wikipedia, the blatantly legal and incredibly popular shared-knowledge collection website, was launched.

Everyone was playing Solitaire instead of worrying about the coming end of the world. The dot-com crash seemed to prove that brick-and-mortar was still the real world and that "digital mindshare" was a hoax. From 1999 to 2004, huge swathes of the post-industrial service economy quietly continued to go digital. The fast fiber optic cable links from the US to India that were used in 1998-99 to do Y2K conversions became the portals for massive outsourcing. And as businesses quietly off-shored and reorganized around an ever cheaper global communications network that let them move help desks to Bangalore and insurance claims processing to Haiti, the second Internet boom, aka Web 2.0, exploded sometime around 2003-2004. Ironically, given their reluctance to innovate and their dependence on captive markets, it was Microsoft that triggered Web 2.0.

Digital society must be careful about tolerating the criminalization of behavior, such as seeking socially unacceptable porn, that gives the goons an excuse to push the line the wrong way. As with narcotics, the police are not the right tool for public health issues. Zombie Conspiracies There is one other global existential threat to our way of life, and I'm not talking about Hello Kitty. I am however talking about peak oil, and the risks it brings for our comfortable holiday society. Bear with me, I'm not a catastrophe fan (we made it through Y2K, so how bad can the future be, right?). However, that doesn't mean that other people are as optimistic as me. Though the industrial revolution started with coal, today's global economy owes its very existence to long-chain liquid hydrocarbons, aka "oil." Of the seven largest global businesses, six are oil and gas -- Exxon Mobil, Shell, Sinopec, BP, CNPC, Aramco -- plus Walmart in position three.


pages: 409 words: 112,055

The Fifth Domain: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats by Richard A. Clarke, Robert K. Knake

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, borderless world, business cycle, business intelligence, call centre, Cass Sunstein, cloud computing, cognitive bias, commoditize, computer vision, corporate governance, cryptocurrency, data acquisition, DevOps, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, Exxon Valdez, global village, immigration reform, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, Julian Assange, Kubernetes, Mark Zuckerberg, Metcalfe’s law, MITM: man-in-the-middle, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, open borders, platform as a service, Ponzi scheme, ransomware, Richard Thaler, Sand Hill Road, Schrödinger's Cat, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, software as a service, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, Tim Cook: Apple, undersea cable, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero day

If someone succeeds at it, quantum computing, far from putting an end to encryption, might actually offer a highly secure method of communication. In the meantime, banks and other commercial and private-sector organizations are going to have to shift from the encryption systems they use now to quantum-resistant systems. Whether that is two years away or ten is a matter of debate and conjecture, but there is a role for government to require that shift by a certain date through regulation and a new encryption standard. Think of it as Y2K for encryption: a time when everyone is forced to update their software to ensure that a hacker with access to a quantum computer cannot someday become a problem. It is not a dire or immediate threat quite yet, but it will arrive sooner than most realize. The Real Promise of Quantum Computing So, assuming Chad Rigetti, his giant corporate competitors, or the Chinese can get a real quantum computer to operate as more than a science experiment, what will we do with it?

VPNs are thought to be a secure means of accessing corporate databases and applications from off-site and may involve a corporate gateway that examines the security status of the remote computer before granting access. Wiper: Sometimes rendered “wipr,” it is a software attack tool that erases all data found on a device or network in such a manner that the erased data is not recoverable. Wiperware may lurk on a network for days, waiting to be included in a network backup so that when the backup is mounted after an attack, the wiperware will activate and erase that too. Year Two Thousand (Y2K): Refers to an international effort prior to January 1, 2000, to modify computer software in order to avoid an expected malfunction on that date. There was a belief that failure to modify such software in time would result in widespread failure of software-controlled devices and machinery at 12:01 A.M. of 01/01/2000. Zero-day vulnerability: A software attack tool that has never been used before and for which, therefore, no defense currently exists.

Code, 194 Van Evera, Stephen, 100 vehicles, 266–67, 269–70 Venables, Phil, 101–3 VENOM vulnerability, 77 venture capital (VC), 5, 63–64, 67–69, 82–83, 94, 136, 140, 248 Veracode, 79–80 Verizon, 45–46, 119, 138, 265–66 Verve, 271, 273 Virginia, 174, 176, 230, 231 virtual private networks (VPNs), 20, 65, 160, 308 VM escape attack, 77 Vora, Poorvi, 219 Vulnerabilities Equities Process, 36 vulnerability managers, 245 Wall Street Journal, 86, 95 WannaCry, 18, 22, 27 war, 7–8, 87, 100, 182–83, 198 nuclear, see nuclear weapons see also cyber war Warner, Mark, 230 Warnings (Clarke and Eddy), 162, 223 weaponization, 51–53 Weedbrook, Christian, 258–59 Wells Fargo, 79–80, 136, 284 Who Controls the Internet? (Wu and Goldsmith), 208 WikiLeaks, 21, 24, 37 wipers, 18–19, 38, 188, 308 Wolff, Evan, 112 Workday, 152 World War I, 100–101, 183, 240 World War II, 73, 150, 183, 240 Wu, Tim, 208 Xanadu, 258–59 Xi Jinping, 26, 33–34, 241 Xu, Yanjun, 28 Yahoo, 209 Year Two Thousand (Y2K), 262, 208 YouTube, 232 Yu, Sounil, 65–67, 69–72, 82, 83 Zatko, Mudge, 78–79, 82, 119 Zatko, Sarah, 82 Zelvin, Larry, 73 zero-day vulnerability, 21–24, 36, 38, 46, 297, 308 Zuckerberg, Mark, 67 Zurich Insurance Group, 121 ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ About the Authors Richard A. Clarke is one of the world’s leading experts on security, cyberspace, and terrorism.


pages: 428 words: 121,717

Warnings by Richard A. Clarke

active measures, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, anti-communist, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA, Bernie Madoff, cognitive bias, collateralized debt obligation, complexity theory, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, data acquisition, discovery of penicillin, double helix, Elon Musk, failed state, financial thriller, fixed income, Flash crash, forensic accounting, friendly AI, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, knowledge worker, Maui Hawaii, megacity, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, mouse model, Nate Silver, new economy, Nicholas Carr, nuclear winter, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, phenotype, Ponzi scheme, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Sam Altman, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, smart grid, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Stuxnet, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, Tunguska event, uranium enrichment, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, Y2K

Increased levels of education and entry into the workforce of women also reduced birth rates. There are those who believe that Ehrlich was not wrong, just premature. They think that what he predicted will happen, just not yet. In any event, one clear lesson from the population-bomb case is that decision makers need to model how the overall system will adjust when it perceives the threat and whether that will delay the disaster or significantly reduce the problem. *Y2K: In 1984, Jerome and Marilyn Murray published a book, Computers in Crisis, which predicted that when 1999 rolled over into the year 2000, many software programs would malfunction. Although it initially gained little public attention, by the mid-1990s, software developers and computer scientists in general were in widespread agreement that there was a potentially serious problem. Many software programs could not display the year 2000 because they were written with only two digits available for the designation of the year.

He saw it as an issue whose solution required significant resources, an issue for which there was no partial solution, in which some of our critical systems would be allowed to fail. The downside of his being wrong, if that happened, was quite limited. The worst thing that would happen if he overreacted was that a lot of software would be updated and many software and service companies would be enriched. The lesson of the Y2K case study is that, if the Cassandra is right and averts the problem by action, there will be those who decry overreaction. One cannot always prove such critics wrong, but experiments and models can be used to demonstrate what might have happened in the absence of the response. If you decide to act in a big way to solve the alleged problem, it is, of course, less risky if the costs of your being wrong are limited and are clearly outweighed by the potential impact of not acting or doing so insufficiently.

., 223–25, 231–32, 235–36 Weidner, David, 158, 163 Weiss, Joe, 283–84, 286–89, 291–96, 298–300 West Antarctic Ice Sheet, 239, 246, 360 West Berlin, 25 Wharton School, 157–58 White, Ryan, 227, 384n White House National Warning Office, 355–56 Principals Committee, 29 Situation Room, 26–27, 181 Whitney, Meredith, 143–46, 148–54, 160–65 background of, 151, 153–54 Citigroup downgrade, 143–46, 154, 156–60, 164–65 Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), 315–16 Wiesel, Elie, 113 Wilson, E. O., 199 Winslow Meteor Crater, 305–6 Wired, 297 Wohlstetter, Roberta, 19, 21 Woolsey, James, 352 Woolsey, Jim, 32 World Bank, 88 World Health Organization (WHO), 217–18, 229 World War I, 9, 221 World War II, 10–11, 84, 221, 231, 275, 365 Worry (worrying), 379–80n Worst-case scenarios, 363–64 X-47B, 199, 200, 214 X-ray diffraction, 328 Yale University, 329 Year 2000 problem (Y2K), 193–95 Yemen, 59, 63, 65 Yeshiva University, 113 Your Government Failed You (Clarke), 8 Yudkowsky, Eliezer, 174, 202–16, 355 Zakaria, Fareed, 71 Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, 28 Zeitoun (Eggers), 39 Zenko, Micha, 379n Zero population growth (ZPG), 192–93 Zika virus, 225, 233 Zuckerman, Mort, 101 ABOUT THE AUTHORS RICHARD A. CLARKE, a veteran of thirty years in national security and over a decade in the White House, is now the CEO of a cybersecurity consulting firm.


The Future of Technology by Tom Standage

air freight, barriers to entry, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, Clayton Christensen, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, creative destruction, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed generation, double helix, experimental economics, full employment, hydrogen economy, industrial robot, informal economy, information asymmetry, interchangeable parts, job satisfaction, labour market flexibility, Marc Andreessen, market design, Menlo Park, millennium bug, moral hazard, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, optical character recognition, railway mania, rent-seeking, RFID, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, Skype, smart grid, software as a service, spectrum auction, speech recognition, stem cell, Steve Ballmer, technology bubble, telemarketer, transcontinental railway, Y2K

The roots of India’s competitiveness in it reach back to the late 1980s, when American firms such as Texas Instruments and Motorola came to M 125 THE FUTURE OF TECHNOLOGY Bangalore for the local talent. Other American firms, such as HewlettPackard, American Express, Citibank and Dun & Bradstreet, followed these pioneers, setting up their own “captive” Indian it organisations in the 1990s. The Indian companies got their first big boost with the so-called “y2k crisis” at the turn of the millennium. it experts feared that because elderly software code allowed only two digits to record the year, some computer systems would read the year 2000 as 1900, causing mayhem as systems crashed. Big western it-services companies such as ibm, Accenture and eds ran out of engineers to check old code and subcontracted some of the work to Indian firms instead. Once the Indians had saved the world, they set out to conquer it.

Six-sigma “black belts” hurtle about Wipro’s 100-acre technology campus in Bangalore, improving everything from software coding to the way the company cleans its toilets. (Among other things, this involves analysing liquid-soap availability, tissue supply and waste management, explains a serious-looking Wipro official.) The claims of India’s marketing men tend to be a little ahead of reality. Amar Bhide of Columbia University, who has spent some time in Bangalore, is sceptical. The y2k crisis pushed “the grungiest it work on to India’s best software engineers,” says Mr Bhide. “It was like asking Oxford graduates to dig ditches. It created the impression that Indians were fantastic at programming.” Still, the outline of a distinct brand of Indian competitiveness – in performing carefully defined, rules-bound, repetitive white-collar business work – appears to be taking shape. Already, the Indian it firms, along with some of the foreign captives in India, boast the world’s most impressive set of international quality certifications for software engineering.

O’Neil, David 73 O’Neil, John 28, 30 OneSaf 197 online banks 37 online shopping viii, 37 open standards 7, 10, 22–7, 31, 38, 43, 85–7, 115, 118–19, 152 operating systems 9, 10, 23–5, 31, 38, 85, 101, 109 operators, mobile phones 157–61, 162–9 Opsware 8, 15 optical-character recognition 121 Oracle 5, 20–2, 33, 38, 39–40, 46, 56, 62, 86, 243 Orange 157–8 organic IT 13–16, 88 original design manufacturers (ODMs), mobile phones 156–7 O’Roarke, Brian 192 O’Roarke, John 96 Orr, Scott 187 orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) 212–13, 215–17 INDEX Otellini, Paul 11, 95 outshored developments, software 38, 115, 138–9 outsourcing viii, 9, 19–20, 22, 38, 68–9, 71, 72, 88–92, 112–46, 158–60 see also globalisation barriers 121–2, 143 concepts 112–46 costs 112–24, 131–5, 140–3 cultural issues 122, 142 Europe 140–6 historical background 119–20, 125–6, 133 India 38, 109, 112–15, 119–22, 125–35, 137–8, 140–6 legal agreements 121–4 mobile phones 155–6, 158–60 opportunities 144–6 protectionists 140–6 reasons 123–4, 143 services 113–30 social outsourcing 143 “overshoot” stage, industries 9, 10–11, 109 overview vii–x, 6–7 Ovi, Alessandro 275–6 Oxford GlycoSciences 243 P Pacific Cycle 140 Page, Larry 9 Pait, Rob 207 Palladium 74, 76 Palm Pilot 150 Palmisano, Samuel 22 Paltrow, Gwyneth 173 Panasonic 156 Papadopoulos, Greg 14, 78–9, 83–4, 91 Papadopoulos, Stelios 237 Parker, Andrew 143 Parks Associates 96, 203 Parr, Doug 319 particulate filters 296–7 passwords 53, 58–61, 67, 96–7 patents, nanotechnology 321–6, 329 Patriot Act, America 35 PCs 9–16, 78–81, 82–110, 151, 171–3, 202–18 see also digital homes; hardware commoditisation issues 9–16, 132–5, 203 complexity issues 78–81, 82–110 screen sizes 100–1 UWB 214–18 Wi-Fi 209–18 PDAs see personal digital assistants Peck, Art 203 PentaSafe Security 60 Pentium chips 199–200 PeopleSoft 39, 86, 119, 126, 132 Perez, Carlota 5–6, 134 performance issues see also processing power; returns cars 291–8 Cell chips 198–200 cost links 29–30 Perlegen 244 personal digital assistants (PDAs) 151, 277, 279 see also handheld computers personal video recorders (PVRs) 203, 205–6 perverse incentives, security issues 61–2 Pescatore, John 55 Pfizer 69, 240, 247, 312, 315 pharmaceutical companies 239–40, 241–50, 312 PHAs 260 Philippines 130 Philips 120, 217 “phishing” 76, 89 phonograph 82, 84 photo-voltaic cells 280 photos ix, 78, 95, 101, 179–83 Physiome 248 Picardi, Tony 79 Pick, Adam 156 Pink Floyd 225 Piper, H. 292 Pittsburgh convention centre 304 Pivotal 187 plasma screens 230–2 plastics 238–9, 259–64 PlayStation 191–2, 199–200, 206–7 plug-and-play devices 78 plug-in hybrid cars 295–6 Poland 120 police involvement, security breaches 72 polio 265 politics 32–5 see also governments Pollard, John 157 pollution 275, 296–7, 299–304, 319 Pop Idol (TV show) 225 Pope, Alexander 267 Porsche 292 “post-technology” period, IT industry vii, 5–7 Powell, Michael 98, 206 power grids 233, 285–90 PowerPoint presentations 4–5, 107 Predictive Networks 337 Presley, Elvis 225 prices, downward trends viii, 4–7 PricewaterhouseCoopers 38 printers 78, 96 privacy issues 27, 34, 42–8, 179–83 see also security... mobile phones 179–83 processing power see also computer chips 353 THE FUTURE OF TECHNOLOGY exponential growth 4–7, 8–14 Proctor, Donald 106 Prodi, Romano 274–5 profits, future prospects 7, 17–18, 37–40 proprietary technology 24, 26, 80, 86 protectionists, outsourcing 140–6 proteins, biotechnology 241–64 protocols, complexity issues 86 Proxim 210 Prozac 315 PSA Peugeot Citroën 293, 296–7 PSP, Sony 191–3 public accounts 44 Pullin, Graham 177–8 PVRs see personal video recorders Q Qualcomm 164 quantum dots 312, 317, 322, 325 R radiation fears, mobile phones 176 radio 34–5, 36, 39, 94–5, 108, 155–61, 164, 209–18, 223 see also wireless... chips 155–61, 164 “garbage bands” 209–10, 215 music industry 223 spectrum 34–5, 94–5, 209–18 UWB 96–7, 214–19 Radjou, Navi 333–4 railway age vii, 5, 7, 23, 36, 39, 134 Raleigh, Greg 211 RAND 195 rationalisation exercises 31 RCA 108–9, 206, 208, 220, 315 real-world skills, gaming comparisons 194–7 RealNetworks 203 rechargeable batteries 280–4 Recourse Technologies 62–3 Reed, Philip 177 regulations 35, 44, 209–10, 326–9 see also legal issues relational databases 101–2 reliability needs viii, 42–8 religion 19 renewable energy 275–6, 286, 289, 300, 310, 315 ReplayTV 205 Research in Motion (RIM) 152–3 resistance problems, employees 31 return on investment (ROI) 30–1 returns 20, 29–31, 329 see also performance issues risk 20, 30, 329 revenue streams biotechnology 237–8, 241–2 354 gaming 189–90, 191 GM 251–2 mobile phones 151, 154–5, 157, 162–3, 165–6, 174 nanotechnology 321–6 revolutionary ideas vii–viii, 5–7, 13–14, 36–40, 80–4, 107–10, 116, 134, 151–3, 198–200, 236–40, 326–9 RFID radio tags 39, 94–5 Rhapsody 203 Ricardo 296–7 Riley, James, Lieutenant-Colonel 195–7 RIM see Research in Motion ringtones 165–6 RISC chips 200 risk assessments 70–4, 76 attitudes 18 handling methods 71 insurance policies 71–3 management 70–4 mitigation 71–3 outsourced risk 71, 72, 88–92 returns 20, 30, 329 security issues 42–8, 49–69, 70–4 RNA molecules 241–2, 249–50, 265 Robinson, Shane 15–16 robotics x, 233, 316, 332–5 Roco, Mihail 309 Rodgers, T.J. 32 Rofheart, Martin 216–17 Rogers, Richard 300 ROI see return on investment Rolls, Steve 121 Romm, Joseph 298 Roomba 332, 334–5 “root kit” software 51 Rose, John 226 Roslin Institute 256 Roy, Raman 125–8 Russia 115, 130, 140, 142, 145, 319 Ryan, John 312 S S700 mobile phone 171 Saffo, Paul 83–4, 103, 182 Salesforce.com 19, 20, 84, 91–2, 109 Samsung 158–60, 181, 208, 217, 231, 277 Santa Fe Institute 39 SAP 22, 38, 86, 119, 126, 132 satellite television 205 Saudi Arabia 180 scandals 28 scanning tunnelling microscope (STM) 306 SCC see Sustainable Computing Consortium Schadler, Ted 95, 97 Schainker, Robert 285, 289 INDEX Scherf, Kurt 96–7 Schmelzer, Robert 91 Schmidt, Eric 9, 35, 36–8 Schmidt, Nathan 66 Schneider National 29–31 Schneier, Bruce 43, 58, 61–2, 65, 70, 73–4 schools, surveillance technology 181 Schwartz, John 46 Schwinn 140, 143 Scott, Tony 43, 68–9 screen sizes 100–1 screws 23–4 Seagate Technology 207 seamless computing 96–7 Sears, Roebuck & Co 36 Securities and Exchange Commission 321 security issues viii, 25–7, 32–5, 42–8, 49–74, 86–7 see also privacy... airport approach 68–9 anti-virus software 50–1, 60, 67–8 biometric systems 60, 64–5, 71, 74 breaches 43–4, 46, 49–52, 62, 72–3 civil liberties 74 concepts 42–74, 86–7 costs 45–6, 50–1, 62, 70–4 employees 58–63, 69 encryption 53–4 firewalls 51–3, 58, 60, 62, 66–8, 71, 86–7 hackers 4, 43, 47, 49, 51–3, 58–63 handheld computers 67–8 honeypot decoys 62–3 human factors 57–63, 69 identity management 69 IDSs 51, 53–4, 62, 87 impact assessments 70–1, 76 insider attacks 62–3 insurance policies 71–3 internet 35, 42–8, 49–57, 61–2, 66, 66–7, 71, 73–6, 179–83 job vacancies 46 joint ventures 67 major threats 35, 42, 43, 47, 49–63, 66–9 management approaches 60–3, 69 Microsoft 54–6, 72, 74, 76 misconceptions 46–8 networks 42–8, 49–65, 66–9 passwords 53, 58–61, 67, 96–7 patches 56–7, 76 perverse incentives 61–2 police involvement 72 risk assessments 70–4, 76 standards 71–3 terrorism 35, 42, 43, 50, 65, 74, 75–6, 265–6 tools 49–63, 86–7 viruses 45, 47, 49–56, 59–60, 67–8, 74, 86, 89 Wi-Fi 66–7, 93 sedimentation factors 8–9, 84 segmentation issues, mobile phones 167–9 self-configuration concepts 88–9 Sellers, William 23 Seminis 254 Sendo 160 Senegal 182 September 11th 2001 terrorist attacks 35, 42, 43, 50, 65, 75 servers 9–16, 37–8, 62–3, 85–7, 132–3, 203 services industry 14, 17–22, 25–7, 31, 36–40, 80, 88–92, 109, 113–35, 203 see also web services outsourcing 113–46 session initiation protocol (SIP) 104–6 sewing machines 82, 84 SG Cowen 237 shapes, mobile phones 170–6 Shapiro, Carl 24 Sharp 156, 231, 326 shelfware phenomenon 20 Shelley, Mary 267, 269 shipping costs 121 sick building syndrome 302 Siebel 86 Siemens 120, 130, 142, 156, 159, 170, 172, 174 SightSpeed 84, 98, 103 SilentRunner 62 Silicon Valley 9, 32–40, 45–6, 54, 69, 79, 96, 98, 101, 103, 152, 313–14, 321 silk 263, 269 Simon, Herbert 336 simplicity needs 78–81, 84, 87, 88–92, 98–110 SIP see session initiation protocol Sircam virus 45, 49 Sirkin, Hal 120, 140 “six sigma” methods 128 SK 169 Skidmore, Owings & Merrill 302 Sky 205 Skype 103–4, 110 Sloan School of Management, MIT 30 Slovakia 120 small screens 100 Smalley, Richard 311 smallpox 265–6 smart power grids 233, 285–90 smartcards 64, 69 smartphones 150–3, 157–61 see also mobile phones SMES devices 289 Smith Barney 37 Smith, George 307–8 Smith, Lamar 75 Smith, Vernon 17 SNP 243–4 SOAP 25–7 355 THE FUTURE OF TECHNOLOGY social issues mobile phones 177–8, 182–3 music players 220–1 social outsourcing 143 software see also information technology ASPs 19–20, 91–2, 109 bugs 20–1, 54–6 Cell chips 198–200 commoditisation issues 10–16, 25, 132–5, 159, 203 complexity issues 14–15, 78–81, 82–110, 117–22 firewalls 52–3, 58, 86–7 hackers 51–3, 58–63 Java programming language 21–2, 25, 86 management software 13–16, 21–2, 88, 117–18 mobile phones 158–9 natural-language search software 339–40 operating systems 9, 10, 23–5, 31, 38, 85, 101, 109 outsourcing 38, 115, 138–9 patches 56–7, 76 premature releases 20–1 shelfware phenomenon 20 viruses 45, 47, 49–56, 59–60, 67, 74, 89 solar power 275–6, 286, 289, 301–2, 310, 315, 325 Solectron 112–13, 119 solid-state storage media 204, 207, 219 SOMO... project, mobile phones 177–8 Sony 95, 108, 156, 191–3, 198–200, 203, 206–7, 217, 228, 231, 282–4, 332, 334, 338 Sony Ericsson 156, 158, 159–60, 171 Sony/BMG 222–3, 227, 229 Sood, Rahul 38 Sorrent 187 South Africa 309, 319, 334 South Korea 156, 158, 163–5, 167–9, 170–1, 181, 319 soyabean crops 252–4 spam 76, 89, 118 Spar, Debora 32–3 speculation vii speech recognition 102, 121, 336 SPH-V5400 mobile phone 208 Spider-Man 189–90 Spinks, David 60–1, 63 Spitzer, Eliot 223 Sprint 167–8, 180–1 SQL 53 @Stake 54 Standage, Ella 316 standards green buildings 300–4 open standards 7, 10, 22–7, 31, 38, 43, 85–7, 115, 118–19, 152 356 security issues 71–3 W-CDMA standard 163–4, 168 web services 90–1 Wi-Fi 210–13 Stanford University 82, 137 Star Wars (movie) 186 steam power ix, 5, 134 steel industry 134 steering committees 31 stem cells 268–9 Steven Winter Associates 302 Stewart, Martha 249 STM see scanning tunnelling microscope stop-start hybrid cars 293–4 storage problems, electricity 275–6, 289–90 StorageTek 85 strategy 30 stress-resistance, biotechnology 254 Studio Daniel Libeskind 302 Sturiale, Nick 45 Sun Microsystems 9, 13–15, 21–2, 25, 27, 37–8, 43, 56, 58, 78–9, 83, 85, 87, 91, 102 supercomputers 199–200 Superdome machines 21 supply chains 8, 37–40, 155 surveillance technology 35, 74, 179–83, 309 Sussex University 5, 220, 310 Sustainable Computing Consortium (SCC) 27 Sweden 109 Swiss Army-knife design, mobile phones 171–2 Swiss Re Tower, 30 St Mary Axe 299, 301–2, 304 swivel design, mobile phones 171 Symantec 39, 46, 50, 62–3, 67 Symbian 158 Symbol 210 synthetic materials 258–64, 317 systems analysts 137 T T-Mobile 167–8 Taiwan 156–7, 160 Talwar, Vikram 144 Taylor, Andy 226 Taylor, Carson 287 TCP/IP 25 TCS 132–5, 145–6 Teague, Clayton 314 TechNet 33 techniques, technology 17–18 techno-jewellery design, mobile phones 172–4 technology see also individual technologies concepts vii–x, 4–7, 17–18, 23–7, 32–3, 82–4, 134, 326–9 cultural issues 93–4, 142 INDEX geekiness problems 83–4 government links 7, 18, 27, 31–5, 43–8, 123–4, 179–83, 209–10 Luddites 327 surveillance technology 35, 74, 179–83, 309 Tehrani, Rich 105 telecommunications viii, 23, 26, 103–6, 134, 164–5 telegraph 32–3, 108 telephone systems 84, 103–6, 109–10, 212–13, 214 Telia 109 terrorism 35, 42, 43, 50, 65, 74, 75–6, 265–6 Tesco 168 Tetris 12 Texas Energy Centre 287 Texas Instruments 125–6, 217 text-messaging facilities 165, 167 Thelands, Mike 164 therapeutic antibodies 249–50, 256–7 Thiercy, Max 339–40 thin clients 102 third-generation mobile phone networks (3G) 151, 162–9, 212 Thomas, Jim 318 Thomson, Ken 59 Thornley, Tony 164 3G networks see third-generation mobile phone networks TIA see Total Information Awareness TiVo 203, 205–6 Tomb Raider (game/movie) 187–8 Toshiba 156, 198–200, 203 Total Information Awareness (TIA) 35 toxicity issues, nanotechnology 316–17, 319, 328–9 Toyota 291–5, 297, 300–1, 334 toys see also gaming robotics 334 transatlantic cable 36, 39 transistors 4–7, 8–12, 85–7, 109 see also computer chips Transmeta 313 Treat, Brad 84, 98 Tredennick, Nick 10–11 Treo 150, 153 “Trojan horse” software 51–2 True Crime (game) 187 TruSecure 52, 60, 63 TTPCom 155–6 Tuch, Bruce 210 TVs see also video recorders flat-panel displays ix, 94, 147, 202–3, 230–2, 311 hard disks 204–8 screens 202–3, 230–2 set-top boxes 203, 205–6 UWB 214–18 Wi-Fi 212–18 U UBS Warburg 31, 45, 80–1, 89, 170, 174 UDDI 25–7 ultrawideband (UWB) 96–7, 214–19 UMTS see W-CDMA standard “undershoot” stage, industries 9, 109 UNECE 332–4 Ungerman, Jerry 52 Unimate 332–3 United Airlines 27 Universal Music 222–3, 226–7 Unix 9, 25, 85, 108 USB ports 78 usernames 59 USGBC 300–2 utility companies, cyber-terrorism threats 75–6 utility factors 7, 16, 17, 19–22, 42–8 UWB see ultrawideband V V500 mobile phone 157 vaccines 265–6 Vadasz, Les 33 Vail, Tim 290 value added 5–7, 37–40, 133, 138–9 value transistors 11 van Nee, Richard 211 Varian, Hal 24 VC see venture capital Veeco Instruments 324 vendors complexity issues 84–110 consumer needs 94–7 Venter, Craig 262–3, 271 venture capital (VC) 12, 31, 45, 79, 92, 107, 126–7, 238, 308, 321–6 Verdia 254–5, 261 Veritas 39, 85 Vertex 247 vertical integration, mobile phones 156–61 Vertu brand 173–4 Viacom 224 video phone calls 84, 103–6, 164–5, 167–8 video recorders see also TVs DVRs 205–6 handheld video players 206 hard disks 204–8 PVRs 203, 205–6 Wi-Fi 212–13 video searches, Google 11 357 THE FUTURE OF TECHNOLOGY Video Voyeurism Prevention Act, America 180 video-game consoles see gaming Virgin 95, 160, 167–8 Virgin Mobile 160, 167–8 virtual private networks (VPNs) 54, 68, 86–7 virtual tissue, biotechnology 248 virtualisation concepts 15–16, 88–92 viruses 45, 47, 49–56, 59–60, 67–8, 74, 86, 89 anti-virus software 50–1, 60, 67–8 concepts 49–56, 59–60, 74 costs 50–1 double-clicking dangers 59–60 Vista Research 46, 62, 67 Vodafone 164–5 voice conversations internet 103–6 mobile phones 165–9, 171 voice mail 104–6 voice-over-internet protocol (VOIP) 103–6, 167 Vonage 104, 110 VPNs see virtual private networks W W3C see World Wide Web Consortium W-CDMA standard 163–4, 168 Waksal, Sam 249 Wal-Mart 95, 114–15, 131–2, 140, 224, 228 Walkman 192 warfare AI 338 biotechnology 265–6 gaming comparisons 195–7, 339 nanotechnology 319 Warner Music 222–3, 226–7 Watson, James 236, 247, 271 web services 21–2, 25–7, 31, 80, 88–92, 109, 203 see also internet; services... complexity issues 88–92, 109 standards 90–1 Webster, Mark 211 WECA see Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance Weill, Peter 30 Welland, Mark 318 Western Union 33, 108 Westinghouse Electric 332 wheat 253 white page 99–100 Wi-Fi 34–5, 66–7, 93, 95–7, 153, 203, 209–18 concepts 209–18 forecasts 209, 212–13 historical background 209–13 hotspots 211–12 mobile phones 212 standards 210–13 358 threats 212–13 UWB 214–18 Wilkerson, John 237 Williams, Robbie 222, 226 Wilsdon, James 318 WiMax 212–13 WiMedia 213 Wimmer, Eckard 265 wind power 275–6, 286, 289–90, 302 Windows 15, 24–5, 55–6, 96, 101, 108, 152, 203 Windows Media Center 203 WinFS 101 Wipro 112, 115, 120–1, 125–9, 131–5, 138, 145–6 Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance (WECA) 211 wireless technology ix, 11, 34–5, 39, 66–7, 93, 95–7, 109–10, 147, 150–3, 167, 168–9, 171–3, 203, 209–13, 334 see also Wi-Fi Bluetooth wireless links 171–2, 173, 214–15, 218 concepts 209–13, 334 historical background 209–13 Wladawsky-Berger, Irving vii, 5, 19, 22, 25, 38–9 Wolfe, Josh 323 Wong, Leonard 195 Wood, Ben 156–7, 160, 174 Woodcock, Steven 338–9 Word 84, 107 work-life balance 80–1, 94 see also employees World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) 25 worm viruses 49–50, 59, 86, 89 Wright, Myles 118 “ws splat” 90–1 WSDL 25–7 X x-ray crystallography 247–8 Xbox 189, 206–7 Xelibri mobile phones 170, 172, 174 Xerox 108–9 XML see extensible markup language XtremeSpectrum 216 Y Y2K crisis 76, 126, 128 Yagan, Sam 229 Yanagi, Soetsu 84 Yurek, Greg 288 Z ZapThink 91


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But What if We're Wrong? Thinking About the Present as if It Were the Past by Chuck Klosterman

a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, British Empire, citizen journalism, cosmological constant, dark matter, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, George Santayana, Gerolamo Cardano, ghettoisation, Howard Zinn, Isaac Newton, Joan Didion, non-fiction novel, obamacare, pre–internet, Ralph Nader, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Stephen Hawking, the medium is the message, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, too big to fail, Y2K

At a New Year’s Eve party in 2008, I predicted Michael Jackson would unexpectedly die within the next twelve months, an anecdote I shall casually recount at every New Year’s party I’ll ever attend for the rest of my life. But these are the exceptions. It is far, far easier for me to catalog the various things I’ve been wrong about: My insistence that I would never own a cell phone. The time I wagered $100—against $1—that Barack Obama would never become president (or even receive the Democratic nomination). My three-week obsession over the looming Y2K crisis, prompting me to hide bundles of cash, bottled water, and Oreo cookies throughout my one-bedroom apartment. At this point, my wrongness doesn’t even surprise me. I almost anticipate it. Whenever people tell me I’m wrong about something, I might disagree with them in conversation, but—in my mind—I assume their accusation is justified, even when I’m relatively certain they’re wrong, too. Yet these failures are small potatoes.

(Nagel), 254 Whiplash (film), 188–89 Williams, Hank, 70 Williams, Robin, 255 Wine, April, 60 Winfrey, Oprah, 182 Witten, Edward, 224–25, 236 World War I, 9 wrestling, pro, 234–35 Wright, Frank Lloyd, 90–92 Wright, Lawrence, 52 writers bloggers as, 231–32 changing tastes of readers, 93–94 cult, 53–54 poets, 93–94 pyramid analogy, 51–56 “quietly unrated,” 54–55 ranking the best, 22–28, 30–39, 49–50, 92–94 recognizing diverse, 25–27 “vocally unrated,” 52–53 writing that represents life, 43–47 Y2K crisis, 1–2 “Young Love” (song), 79 “You’re doing it wrong” argument, 242, 243, 250 Zero Dark Thirty (film), 152 Zinn, Howard, 40 Zlotnick, Susan, 45 Zuckerman, Mort, 246 1 This means that gravity might just be a manifestation of other forces—not a force itself, but the peripheral result of something else. Greene’s analogy was the idea of temperature: Our skin can sense warmth on a hot day, but “warmth” is not some independent thing that exists on its own.


pages: 303 words: 67,891

Advances in Artificial General Intelligence: Concepts, Architectures and Algorithms: Proceedings of the Agi Workshop 2006 by Ben Goertzel, Pei Wang

AI winter, artificial general intelligence, bioinformatics, brain emulation, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, computer vision, conceptual framework, correlation coefficient, epigenetics, friendly AI, G4S, information retrieval, Isaac Newton, John Conway, Loebner Prize, Menlo Park, natural language processing, Occam's razor, p-value, pattern recognition, performance metric, Ray Kurzweil, Rodney Brooks, semantic web, statistical model, strong AI, theory of mind, traveling salesman, Turing machine, Turing test, Von Neumann architecture, Y2K

Furthermore, it has well-known difficulties with the assignment of probabilities to unique events that are not readily thought of as elements of ensembles. For instance, what was the probability, in 1999, of the statement S holding that “A great depression will be brought about by the Y2K problem”? Yes, this probability can be cast in terms of relative frequencies in various ways. For instance, one can define it as a relative frequency across a set of hypothetical “possible worlds”: across all possible worlds similar to our own, in how many of them did the Y2K problem bring about a great depression? But it’s not particularly natural to assume that this is what an intelligence must do in order to assign a probability to S. It would be absurd to claim that, in order to assign a probability to S, an intelligence must explicitly reason in terms of an ensemble of possible worlds.

So, in the case of statements that are decomposable in this sense, the Bayesian interpretation implies a relative frequency based interpretation (but not a “frequentist” interpretation in the classical sense). For decomposable statements, plausibility values may be regarded as the means of probability distributions, where the distributions may be derived via subsampling (sampling subsets C of {B1,...,Bn}, calculating P(A|C) for each subset, and taking the distribution of these values; as in the statistical technique known as bootstrapping). In the case of the “Y2K” statement and other similar statements regarding unique instances, one option is to think about decomposability across possible worlds, which is conceptually controversial. 2.1. Indefinite Probability We concur with the subjectivist maxim that a probability can usefully be interpreted as an estimate of the plausibility of a statement, made by some observer. However, we suggest introducing into this notion a more careful consideration of the role of evidence in the assessment of plausibility.


pages: 670 words: 194,502

The Intelligent Investor (Collins Business Essentials) by Benjamin Graham, Jason Zweig

3Com Palm IPO, accounting loophole / creative accounting, air freight, Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, business cycle, buy and hold, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, corporate governance, corporate raider, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, diversified portfolio, dogs of the Dow, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, George Santayana, hiring and firing, index fund, intangible asset, Isaac Newton, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, merger arbitrage, money market fund, new economy, passive investing, price stability, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, sharing economy, short selling, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, stocks for the long run, survivorship bias, the market place, the rule of 72, transaction costs, tulip mania, VA Linux, Vanguard fund, Y2K, Yogi Berra

So while it’s hard to predictwhether these things are overpriced, there’s such a major change taking place that if you could find the winners today—and I certainly think EMC is one of those people—you’ll be well rewarded in the future.” 3 The “Y2K bug” or the “Year 2000 Problem” was the belief that millions of computers worldwide would stop functioning at one second past midnight on the morning of January 1, 2000, because programmers in the 1960s and 1970s had not thought to allow for the possibility of any date past 12/31/1999 in their operating code. U.S. companies spent billions of dollars in 1999 to ensure that their computers would be “Y2K-compliant.” In the end, at 12:00:01 A.M. on January 1, 2000, everything worked just fine. 4 For more on the folly of stock splits, see Jason Zweig, “Splitsville,” Money, March, 2001, pp. 55–56. 5 Posting no. 3622, December 7, 1999, at the Exodus Communications message board on the Raging Bull website (http://ragingbull.lycos.com/ mboard/boards.cgi?

And in October 1999, EMC acquired Data General Corp., which added roughly $1.1 billion to EMC’s revenues that year. Simply by subtracting the extra revenues brought in from Data General, we can see that the volume of EMC’s existing businesses grew from $5.4 billion in 1998 to just $5.6 billion in 1999, a rise of only 3.6%. In other words, EMC’s true growth rate was almost nil—even in a year when the scare over the “Y2K” computer bug had led many companies to spend record amounts on new technology.3 A Simple Twist of Freight Unlike EMC, Expeditors International hadn’t yet learned to levitate. Although the firm’s shares had risen 30% annually in the 1990s, much of that big gain had come at the very end, as the stock raced to a 109.1% return in 1999. The year before, Expeditors’ shares had gone up just 9.5%, trailing the S & P 500 index by more than 19 percentage points.

., Wheelabrator-Frye Whiting Corp. Whitman, Martin Wiesenberger Financial Services Willcox & Gibbs Williams, Jackie G. Williams Communications, Wilshire indexes Winstar Communications wireless stocks Woolworth Company (F. W.) working capital: and aggressive investors; and defensive investors; and dividends; and security analysis “workouts,” WorldCom Worthington Steel W. R. Grace Wyeth Xerox Corp. Xilinx Inc Y2K bug Yahoo! Inc. yield: and aggressive investors; and convertible issues and warrants; and defensive investors; fluctuations in; and history and forecasting of stock market; and inflation; and speculation. See also dividends; interest; performance; return; type of security Yum! Brands, Inc. Zenith Radio Ziv, Amir ZZZZ Best About the Authors BENJAMIN GRAHAM (1894-1976), the father of value investing, has been an inspiration for many of today’s most successful businesspeople.


pages: 276 words: 82,603

Birth of the Euro by Otmar Issing

"Robert Solow", accounting loophole / creative accounting, Bretton Woods, business climate, business cycle, capital controls, central bank independence, currency peg, financial innovation, floating exchange rates, full employment, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, market fundamentalism, money market fund, moral hazard, oil shock, open economy, price anchoring, price stability, purchasing power parity, reserve currency, Y2K, yield curve

Owing to the flexibility in complying with the reserve requirement (the averaging provision), dayto-day fluctuations have remained within narrow limits in normal circumstances, with somewhat larger swings only for very brief periods at the end of the maintenance period. The principles referred to above under the heading of the ‘operational framework’ (equal treatment of credit institutions, etc.) have all been fulfilled. Both individually and in combination, the instruments have worked in an efficient and highly flexible way, as evidenced both in ‘routine’ operation and in exceptional circumstances. For example, the ECB was able to master the ‘Y2K’ problem (the year 2000 software problem), which gave rise to widespread concerns at the time, without major difficulties through (moderate) recourse to fine-tuning measures, while other central banks had to add special instruments to their armoury. The strains on bank liquidity in the wake of the terrorist acts of 11 September 2001 were overcome without any problems by means of fine-tuning operations.99 Through various adjustments, such as the switch from fixed to variable rate tenders or the shortening of the maturity from two weeks to one, the ECB has adapted the specific features of the main refinancing operations in the light of changing conditions. 99 A swap agreement concluded with the US central bank enabled a short-term gap in dollar liquidity to be overcome. 130 • The ECB and the foundations of monetary policy The ECB meets the bulk of credit institutions’ demand for central bank money through its main refinancing operations, supplemented by the longer-term refinancing.

I. 191 liquidity of banks, ECB control by open-market operations 120–1, 124–6 Lisbon agenda (2000) 235, 241 Lithuania 75, 221 living standards per capita GDP 43–6 table 3 differences in 17, 209–10 euro area compared with USA 43 London, as financial centre 176 Lucas, Robert 79 Luxembourg 14, 15, 16, 26 conversion rates 20 per capita GDP 44–7 Maastricht summit (1991), decision on EMU Stage III 9–13 Maastricht Treaty 33, 37–8, 146 (Article 111) 170–1 (Articles 105ff.) 52–4, 60–1, 97, 100, 118–19 convergence criteria 11–12, 13–17 exclusion of liability 194 fiscal policy rules 192–6 and national legislation 223 ‘opt-out clauses’ 25 prohibition on monetary financing 54–5, 192, 194, 234 ratified in European law 234–5 McKinnon, Ronald 48 macroeconomic policy asymmetry in 200–3 stability 206 macroeconomic projections 109–11 Madrid summit (1995) 232 Malta 67, 220 Index • 255 marginal lending facility 126–7, 130, 134 market economy, vs. central planning 61–2, 75, 222 media and ECB communication policy 157–8, 188 pessimism about transition 135, 136 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) criticism of non-disclosure of ECB voting records 160–3 questions to Issing 34–43 minimum reserves 119, 120–2, 127–8 Mitterrand, François 11 model uncertainty 81 Modigliani, Franco 40 ‘monetarist’ position 5–6, 11–12 monetary financing, prohibition of 54–5, 192, 194, 234 monetary pillar, and economic pillar 99–100, 105–11, 112, 116 monetary policy autonomy 7, 8–9 centralized and decentralized fiscal policy 30, 38–9 communitisation of 9, 10 credibility 57, 65 cross-checking and communication 111–14, 116 data for 54 decision-making by committee or individual 147–9 ECB in EMU framework 191–236 in ECB Governing Council 149–56 economic theory and the practice of 184–90 and exchange rate 169–76 and fiscal policy relationship 192, 200–7 implementation of ECB 122–4, 128–30 instruments of ECB 118–30 limits to 205–6 medium-term orientation 103–4 the nature of 41 and price stability 35, 61–3, 203 prior experience and preliminary considerations 119–22 ‘regime shift’ and 79, 82–4, 94 review of ECB strategy (2002/3) 115–18 rules versus authorities 87–9 stability-oriented for the ECB 97–100 fig. 7 success of 141–6 transmission mechanism 189 trust in 33, 57 under a floating exchange regime 171–4 under uncertainty 77–9 see also single monetary policy monetary targeting 90–6 Monetary Transmission Network 189 monetary union conditions for 11–12, 13–17 consequences of 32–3 EU countries outside 75 and European Union 219–22 ‘opt-out clause’ 25 and political union 12–13, 192, 227–36 political will for 25–6 road to 3–9 start of 11–13 without political union 227–36 see also European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) money reference value 97, 98, 106–8, 116, 118 role in ECB monetary policy strategy 98, 99, 106–7, 115, 117 as unit of account and store of value 102 use of electronic 128 256 • Index money market rate 127 fig. 8; 128–30 and interest rates (1999–2006) 141 fig. 10 and interest rates at beginning of monetary union 138–40 fig. 9 money supply defined (M3) 107 growth and inflation 92–3, 105–6 fig. 6 increase for circulation 55 ‘k-per cent rule’ 88 and price levels 39–40, 96, 105, 112 Montenegro 180 moral hazard 193–4, 196, 202 Mundell, Robert 48 nation states autonomy 196 and ECB 191–2 economic policy coordination 38–9 legislation compatibility with EMU 13, 223 responsibility of national policy 215–19 and supranational institution 2, 20–1 national central banks consensus procedures 134 control of liquidity by ECB 120–1, 124–6 cooperation with ECB 110, 131–3 and credit institutions 119 and the ESCB 52–4 and the Eurosystem 53–4, 76, 110, 119–20 independence of (Article 108) 55–60, 223 interest rates reduction 133–4 mandate 165 minimum reserves 120–2 ‘overcapacity’ problems 150 powers of 118–19 rotation and voting rights of governors on ECB Governing Council 224–5 table 8 shift to single monetary policy 82–4, 131–5 stability-oriented policy 138 transparency 164–5 national currencies 48 conversion rates with euro 20 former 1, 20–5 linkages with euro 239 transition to the euro 77, 82–4, 135–6 Netherlands, the 14, 15, 16, 26, 156 conversion rates 20 current account balance 214 neutrality 120, 183, 206 New Zealand, Reserve Bank of 90 Nice, Treaty of, enabling clause 171, 223 North, D. 234 Noyer, Christian 27, 70, 244 oil prices 138–9, 143, 208 declining (1990s) 14, 138 shocks first ((1970s) 6, 57 second (1979/80) 6 old age provision 197, 238 open-market operations 120, 124–6 fine-tuning operations 126, 129, 130 fixed rate and variable rate tenders 125–6, 129, 140 longer-term refinancing operations 126 main refinancing operation 124–6, 129–30, 134, 138–40 structural operations 126 optimum currency area, criteria 48–9, 219 Österreichische Nationalbank 74 Padoa-Schioppa, Tommaso 27, 28 parameter uncertainty 81 Index • 257 Party of European Socialists 34, 35, 37, 38, 40, 41–2 Pax Romana 4, 32 pensions 197, 238 Pöhl, Karl Otto 9 Poland 220 policy coordination in EMU 38–9, 200–7 assignment of responsibility and implicit 203–7 ex ante 200–3 political economy 201–2 political pressure on ECB 137, 162, 174, 202–3 on fiscal policy 206–7 on monetary policy decision-making 148–9 political risks 230–4 political union and common currency 4 in conflict with EMU scenario 242–4 conflict-free extension scenario 242 and economic union 47–51 and monetary union 12–13, 192, 227–36 monetary union without 227–36 political will 25–6, 230 poorer countries 17 population, euro area 43–4 table 2 portfolio diversification 214 Portugal 14, 15, 16, 26 conversion rates 20 current account balance 214, 215 per capita GDP 46 pound sterling 176, 240 press conferences, European Central Bank 157–8, 167, 168 price stability 7, 8, 30, 31, 33, 34–5, 39 below 2 per cent 97, 98, 103, 115, 117 and budget stabilisers 195 convergence criterion 220–1 ECB definition 97–8 ECB monetary policy and 96–118, 170–1, 203 effects of lack of 143–6 in euro area 150–1 and exchange rates 90–3, 170, 172–4 the importance of 61–3, 234 medium-term orientation 103–5, 115 primacy for European Central Bank 60–6, 168 quantitative definition 97, 98, 100–5, 115, 145, 221 trade-off with other objectives 63–6 prices, differentials (Balassa-Samuelson effect) 210–11, 216 Pro-DM party 21 Protocol on the Statute of the European System of Central Banks 26, 52, 119 psychology, in acceptance of euro 24–5, 33, 36 public debt 15–16 fig. 3, 17–18, 193, 236, 239 ceiling for 197 exchange rate risk 194–5 levels 238 public debt instruments, prohibition on direct purchase of 55 public finance, sound condition for EMU participation 13, 19–20, 25, 236 public sector prohibition on provision of credit to 55 relationship with private sector 204 share in euro area 46 purchasing power per capita GDP 210–11 fig. 16 Randzio-Plath, Christa 32, 37 real-estate prices 217–18 reference value, for monetary growth 97, 98, 106–8, 116, 118 258 • Index refinancing see open-market operations ‘regime shift’, and monetary policy 79, 82–4, 94 responsibility assignment of policy 203–7, 217 transfer of national to Europe scenario 242 revenue sharing 218–19 Rich, Georg 85 risk-sharing 214–15 Roman Empire 4, 32 Romania 76 Rueff, Jacques 229 Russia 181 economic crisis (1998) 138 San Marino 180 sanctions 197 savings 36 scepticism 42–3, 50, 68, 76, 84, 135, 207, 229, 243 Schiller, Karl 6 Second World War, and Germany 22–3, 38 securities euro-denominated 239 public and private sector 123–4 ‘tier one assets’ 123–4 ‘tier two assets’ 124 Simons, Henry 87 single monetary policy 47, 54, 68 causes of divergence 207–12 and the ECB 223–7 ECB preparations for 76–85 ‘one size fits all’ issue 207–19, 231, 241 price stability 97 real interest rates, real exchange rate, risk-sharing 212–15 shift of national central banks to 82–4, 131–5, 218–19 and social union 231, 238, 241, 242, 243 single money market 47 Slovenia 67, 75, 210 social rights 238, 243 social union 231, 238, 241, 242, 243 Solans, Eugenio Domingo 27, 28, 70 Solow, Robert 39–40 sovereignty and the Bundesbank 8–9 and economic policy coordination 38–9 and national central banks 150 and supranational institution 2, 20–1, 170, 230, 236 Spain 14, 15, 16, 26, 210, 213 conversion rates 20 current account balance 214, 215 stability consensus on 14 of currency 177, 184, 238, 244 of currency and scarcity of metal 4 of demand for money 117 ECB monetary policy strategy 96–118, 205 of euro 1–2, 33, 141–6 of euro in ECB monetary policy 131–90 exchange rates 6 monetary and society 191 Stability and Growth Pact 15, 17, 25, 55, 196–200, 202, 204, 217, 221, 237 evaluation 198–200, 235 non-compliance 222, 236, 241 standing facilities 126–7, 134–5 statistical data, conversion to a common base 82–4 Statistical Office of the European Communities see Eurostat Statute of the European System of Central Banks 26, 52–66, 87, 119, 223, 234, 239, 241 Article 10 and amendments 223–6 subsidiarity principle 234 supranational institution central bank as a 9, 122–4, 200, 232 Index • 259 and national sovereignty 2, 20–1, 170, 230, 236 Survey of Professional Forecasters 152 Sweden 75 Swiss National Bank 85 tax system increase in indirect rates 143, 204 redistribution effect 62 Taylor rule 89–90 terrorism (11 September 2001) 151 effects on bank liquidity 129 Thygesen, Niels 10 Tietmeyer, Hans 29, 69 Tinbergen Rule 65 Torres Marques, Helena 41–2 trade, usefulness of common currency to 3 trade unions 144, 202 transfer payments, in welfare state 230–1, 238, 243 transmission mechanism 189 transparency 164–5 of ECB 31, 33, 42–3, 60, 84, 87, 97, 99, 113, 163–9 travel, without having to change money 36 Treaty on European Union (1992) see Maastricht Treaty Trichet, Jean-Claude 26 trust 33, 42, 238, 242 uncertainty about the state of the economy 80–1, 82–4 about the structure of the economy 81, 84–5 the elements of 79–82 monetary policy under 77–9, 189 and price instability 63 strategic 81–2, 84–5 ‘uneasy triangle’ theory 7–9 unemployment 33, 34–5, 41, 144, 217 euro area compared with USA 47 and inflation 39–40 structural 238 unit labour costs, and current account balances 215–16 fig. 19 United Kingdom (UK) 4, 75 Chancellor of the Exchequer 58, 147 exchange rate intervention 175 opted out 25, 240 presidency of European Council (1998) 25 reservations on ECB 59 see also Bank of England United States of America (USA) euro area compared with 43, 46–7, 83, 190, 209–10, 212 exchange rate intervention 175 US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) 147 US Federal Reserve 76, 140 organizational structure 85 Vatican State 180 voting collegial 70 consensus principle 153–6 ECB Governing Council model 150, 153–5 majority 68, 171 no disclosure of records 160–3 ‘one person – one vote’ 67–8, 226 rights of national central bank governors in ECB Governing Council 224–7 wage policy 14, 138, 201 national 200, 202, 204 Waigel, Theo 28–9 wealth effect, and asset price trends 109 Weizsäcker, Richard von 230 welfare issues 202, 230–1, 238 welfare state, European transfer payments 230–1, 243 260 • Index Werner Group report (1970) 5 world economy, effects of decline in euro exchange rate on 175–6 ‘Y2K’ problem 129 Zweig, Stefan 22, 62


pages: 791 words: 85,159

Social Life of Information by John Seely Brown, Paul Duguid

business process, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, cross-subsidies, disintermediation, double entry bookkeeping, Frank Gehry, frictionless, frictionless market, future of work, George Gilder, George Santayana, global village, Howard Rheingold, informal economy, information retrieval, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John Markoff, Just-in-time delivery, Kenneth Arrow, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, lateral thinking, loose coupling, Marshall McLuhan, medical malpractice, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, Productivity paradox, Robert Metcalfe, rolodex, Ronald Coase, shareholder value, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Superbowl ad, Ted Nelson, telepresence, the medium is the message, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, transaction costs, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Y2K

SETI stands for Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence. For more information, see http://seti.ssl.berkeley.edu [1999, July 21]. 3. The notion of the "third wave" comes from the futurist Alvin Toffler's (1980) book of the same name. Page 255 4. Indeed, the degree to which we complain about such technologies when they do go wrong indicates the extent to which we have all become dependent on them to go right. The apprehension about the Y2K bug, which some predict may allow tiny embedded chips to bring huge social institutions to a halt, is itself a sign of how deeply enmeshed these things are in our lives. 5. Sometime around 2012, it has been predicted, Moore's Law will come up against the physical limitations of current microchip components, though by then solid-state components may well have been replaced. 6. Kelly, 1997. 7.

In Oakeshott's (1967) words: By 'judgement" I mean the tacit or implicit component of knowledge, the ingredient which is not merely unspecified in propositions, but which is unspecifiable in propositions. It is Page 262 the component of knowledge which does not appear in the form of rules and which, therefore, cannot be resolved into information or itemized in the manner characteristic of information. (p. 167) 29. Humphrys, 1997. 30. Jennings et al., 1996. 31. This may turn out to be the biggest challenge in adjusting Y2K problems. 32. These quotations also come from the IBM intelligent agent research (see note 7). 33. Quoted in Quittner, 1995. 34. Those who are unhappy, by contrast, can express their rage by posting messages to the microsoft.crash.crash.crash or microsoft. sucks newsgroups. 35. The car, by the way, found a buyer within a week. 36. Lyman, 1997. 37. Quittner, 1995. 38.


Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors by Matt Parker

8-hour work day, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, bitcoin, British Empire, Brownian motion, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, collateralized debt obligation, computer age, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, Donald Trump, Flash crash, forensic accounting, game design, High speed trading, Julian Assange, millennium bug, Minecraft, obamacare, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, publication bias, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, selection bias, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, Therac-25, value at risk, WikiLeaks, Y2K

Knowing my obsession with up-to-date firmware, probably. But there are going to be a lot of systems that will not get upgraded. There are also processors in my washing machine, dishwasher and car, and I have no idea how to update those. It’s easy to write this off as a second coming of the Y2K ‘millennium bug’ that wasn’t. That was a case of higher level software storing the year as a two-digit number, which would run out after ninety-nine. Through a massive effort, almost everything was updated. But a disaster averted does not mean it was never a threat in the first place. It’s risky to be complacent because Y2K was handled so well. Y2K38 will require updating far more fundamental computer code and, in some cases, the computers themselves. See for yourself If you want to see the Y2K38 bug in action for yourself, find an iPhone. This may work for other phones, or the iPhone may one day be updated to fix this.


pages: 561 words: 87,892

Losing Control: The Emerging Threats to Western Prosperity by Stephen D. King

Admiral Zheng, asset-backed security, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, capital controls, Celtic Tiger, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, corporate governance, credit crunch, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, currency peg, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Diane Coyle, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, G4S, George Akerlof, German hyperinflation, Gini coefficient, hiring and firing, income inequality, income per capita, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, labour mobility, liberal capitalism, low skilled workers, market clearing, Martin Wolf, mass immigration, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, Naomi Klein, new economy, old age dependency ratio, Paul Samuelson, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, price stability, purchasing power parity, rent-seeking, reserve currency, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, sovereign wealth fund, spice trade, statistical model, technology bubble, The Great Moderation, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, The Market for Lemons, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, transaction costs, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, working-age population, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

Seemingly, any fool capable of putting together an investment prospectus was able to raise funds, not because the business case was necessarily sound but because the funds were so freely available. The Federal Reserve added fuel to the fire by keeping policy rates relatively low, because of the unjustified fears of global recession stemming from the Asian crisis and, later on, the concerns associated with computer failures linked to the new millennium (although why monetary policy had to play a role in the Y2K threat is, to say the least, puzzling). The decision to keep interest rates low after the Asian crisis is understandable but, in hindsight, was based on a misinterpretation of the effects of the crisis. Economic models are mostly driven by real, rather than financial, flows: changes in the value of exports and imports, not changes in the value of holdings of financial assets. Admittedly, policy rates and exchange rates play a role, but the Asian crisis filtered through the policymakers’ models only via trade.

(i) Wills Moody, Helen (i) Wimbledon (i), (ii), (iii) Winder, Robert (i) wine (i), (ii), (iii) WIR see World Investment Report Wolf, Martin (i) women’s vote (i) wool industry (i), (ii) workers see also labour nationalism (i) running out of workers (i) command over limited resources (i) demographic dividends and deficits (i) demographic dynamics (i) infant mortality (i) Japan: an early lesson in ageing (i) not the time to close the borders (i) pensions and healthcare (i) a renewed look at migration (i) scarcity (i) working-age population (i), (ii), (iii), (iv), (v), (vi) World Bank (i), (ii), (iii), (iv), (v) WorldCom (i) World Development Indicators (i) World Economic Forum (i), (ii) World Economic Outlook (i) World Financial Center, Shanghai (i) World Investment Report (WIR) (i) World Trade Organization (WTO) (i), (ii), (iii) Wright Brothers (i) The Writing on the Wall (Hutton) (i), (ii) WTO see World Trade Organization Wu, Ximing (i), (ii) xenophobia (i), (ii), (iii), (iv), (v) Y2K threat (i) yen (i), (ii), (iii) Yom Kippur War (i) Yugoslavia (i) Yu Zhu (i) Zaidi, S. (i) Zheng He (i)


pages: 324 words: 80,217

The Decadent Society: How We Became the Victims of Our Own Success by Ross Douthat

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, AI winter, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, Burning Man, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, centre right, charter city, crack epidemic, crowdsourcing, David Graeber, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, East Village, Elon Musk, Flynn Effect, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Francisco Pizarro, ghettoisation, gig economy, Haight Ashbury, helicopter parent, hive mind, Hyperloop, immigration reform, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Islamic Golden Age, Jeff Bezos, Joan Didion, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, life extension, mass immigration, mass incarceration, means of production, megacity, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, multiplanetary species, New Journalism, Nicholas Carr, Norman Mailer, obamacare, Oculus Rift, open borders, out of africa, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, pre–internet, QAnon, quantitative easing, rent-seeking, Robert Bork, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Snapchat, social web, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, technoutopianism, the built environment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, wage slave, women in the workforce, Y2K

We have built and aimed weapons at one another that could wipe out millions or billions in an instant. Our planes and trains and automobiles create endless vectors for deadly diseases to move more swiftly between societies than ever before. Our way of life depends on a technological infrastructure that various disasters could put to an existential test. And the longer the time horizon for sustainable decadence, the more likely it becomes that the whole thing accidentally goes bang—in a Y2K-type meltdown, in a nuclear exchange that happens because the early warning systems misfire and some nuclear line officer fails to keep his cool, in a Stephen King-esque Captain Trips outbreak, or the Skynet endgame feared in Palo Alto. Or, of course, the meteor. Were the dinosaurs decadent? Alas, their books have not survived. A Path to 1929 With that important preamble, let’s turn to the more plausible, predictable scenarios for catastrophic change, the scenarios that follow trend lines rather than landing on the beach in conquistador’s armor or erupting like a zombie epidemic on a clear blue day.

Whatever succeeded, whatever inherited, the historians of the future would draw a line—blurry, debated, a moving target, but still generally agreed upon as real—and say: “Here late modernity ended, here the West’s autumn gave way to winter, here the attempt at a universal civilization was broken on nature’s wheel.” The Writing On the Wall If this is how the story of our decadence ends, there will be a morality-play element to it after all, a sense in which our fall fits the Durant quote and the Gibson vision strangely well. Because climate change and population imbalances and mass migration are not problems dropping like European microbes out of a clear blue Mesoamerican sky, nor are they accidental Y2K or nuclear-launch disasters that can be feared but not exactly predicted. Instead, they are challenges that follow from long-term technological and economic trends, long-term patterns of human behavior—which in turn means that they’re the kinds of trends that a vigorous, nondecadent, advanced civilization should have been able to cope with and head off before they led to some dégringolade. If mass migration ultimately overthrows the Western political order, there will be a cautionary story told by reactionaries ever after, in which the foolish elites of America and Europe couldn’t see that their relaxed attitude toward immigration and their indifference to the most basic aspect of human flourishing imaginable, the birthrate, were both species of decadence, which richly merited the destruction that followed.


pages: 525 words: 142,027

CIOs at Work by Ed Yourdon

8-hour work day, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, business intelligence, business process, call centre, cloud computing, crowdsourcing, distributed generation, Donald Knuth, Flash crash, Googley, Grace Hopper, Infrastructure as a Service, Innovator's Dilemma, inventory management, Julian Assange, knowledge worker, Mark Zuckerberg, Nicholas Carr, rolodex, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, six sigma, Skype, smart grid, smart meter, software as a service, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, the new new thing, the scientific method, WikiLeaks, Y2K, Zipcar

The things I know and you don’t know, that’s my private world. The things I don’t know and you know are things that I try to discover. And then there are things you don’t know and I don’t know. That’s what worries me. Yourdon: Okay, that’s what Donald Rumsfeld called the “unknown unknowns.” Bohlen: Yes. Yourdon: We used to have a lot of conversations about that sort of thing when we were planning for Y2K ten years ago. There are the known knowns and the known unknowns and so on. Okay, so you’re concerned about the things we’re not even aware that we should be worrying about. Bohlen: It primarily comes from my work in the Department of Defense days, and you’re familiar with the war games. But there are some people out there trying to destroy our way of life. And the more I know, the more I can make sure I protect myself or protect our society.

., 87 Arizona Public Service (APS) Company, 66, 211, 223 Arizona State University, 227 ARPANET, 19, 117, 135 Art of Computer Programming, 2 Atlanta-based Southern Company, 191 AT&T, 191, 249 B Ballmer, Steve, 39 Bank of Boston, 47 Baylor-Grapevine Board of Trustees, 47 Bedrock foundation, 249 Bell Atlantic Mobile, 231 Bell Labs, 2, 249 BlackBerry, 60, 96, 116, 121, 171, 184, 246, 261, 296, 317 Blalock, Becky, 182, 191, 215 adaptability, 192 Air Force brat, 191, 192 Atlanta-based Southern Company, 191 banking industry, 203 Boucher, Marie, 196 brainstorm, 202 24/7 business, 199 business intelligence, 204 cloud computing, 205 cognitive surplus, 206 cognitive time, 206 Coker, Dave, 196 communication and education, 200 Community and Economic Development, 194 consumer market, 202 cybersecurity, 207, 209 data analytics, 204, 205 disaster recovery, 209 distributed generation, 204 distribution organization, 201 Egypt revolution, 198 farming technology, 206 finance backgrounds/marketing, 200, 209 Franklin, Alan, 193 Georgia Power, 191 Georgia Power Management Council, 193 global society, 206 Google, 198 incredible technology, 195 Industrial Age, 206 Information Age, 206 InformationWeek's, 196 infrastructure, 202 intellectual property, 196 intelligence and redundancy, 207 Internet, 198, 206 leapfrog innovations, 205 mainframe system, 207 marketing and customer service, 193, 200 MBA, finance, 192 microfiche, 207 microwave tower, 207 mobile devices, 203 mobility and business analytics, 205 Moore's Law, 205 new generation digital natives, 197 flexible and adaptable, 199 innovation and creativity, 199 superficial fashion, 198 Olympic sponsor, 193 out pushing technology, 202 reinforcement, 201 sense of integrity, 200 Southern Company, 194, 198, 201, 207 teamwork survey, 201 technology lab, 202 undergraduate degree, marketing, 192 virtualization, 205 VRU, 203 Ward, Eileen, 196 wire business, 201 world-class customer service, 203 Bohlen, Ken, 211 American Production Inventory Control Society, 211 Apple, 217 APS, 211, 223 ASU, 227 benchmarking company, 216 chief innovation officer, 229 Citrix, 217 cloud computing, 218, 219 cognitive surplus, 220 DECnet, 212 Department of Defense, 222 distributed computing, 217 energy industry, 214 gizmo/whiz-bang show, 216 GoodLink, 217 hard-line manufacturing, 218 home computing, 219 home entertainment, 219 Honeywell, 219 HR generalists, 215 information technology department, 211 Intel machines, 217 John Deere, 213 just say yes program, 223 Lean Six Sigma improvement process, 211 Linux, 220 MBA program, 214 mentors, 213 national alerts, 224 North American universities, 228 paradigm shifts, 218, 220 PDP minicomputers, 212 Peopleware, 226 prefigurative culture, 221 R&D companies, 218 Rhode Island, 226 role models, 213 San Diego Fire Department, 224 security/privacy issues, 217 skip levels, 223 smart home concepts, 219 smartphone, 217 social media, 225 Stead, Jerry, 214 Stevie Award, 211 Storefront engineering, 212 traditional management, 219, 226 Twitter, 224 vocabulary, 221 Waterloo operations, 213 Web 2.0 companies, 227 Web infrastructure, 215 wikipedia, 220 Y2K, 222 Botnets, 23 Brian's and Rob Pike's, 2 Bristol-Myers Squibb, 33 Broadband networks, 241 Brown, 227 Bryant, 227 BT Global Services, 253 BT Innovate & Design (BTI&D), 253 Bumblebee tuna, 130 C Career writing technology, 67 CASE tools, 232 Cash, Jim, 50 Christensen, Clyde, 212 Chrome, 14, 18 Chrysler Corporation, 175 Citibank, 337 Citicorp, 313 Citrix, 217 Client-server-type applications, 59 Cloud computing, 218, 219, 239, 240, 261, 262, 310, 311, 313 Cloud technology, 62 CNN, 54 COBOL, 250 Cognitive surplus, 20, 79, 206, 291 College of Engineering, University of Miami, 113 Columbia University, 1 Community and Economic Development, 194 Computer Sciences Corporation, 35 Computerworld magazine, 196 Consumer-oriented technology, 22 Content management system, 133 Corporate information management (CIM) program, 309 Corporate Management Information Systems, 87 Corvus disk drive, 36 Customer Advisory Boards of Oracle, 191 Customer-relationship management (CRM), 56 Cutter Business Technology Council, 173 D Dallas Children's Medical Center Development Board, 48 DARPA, 19 DDoS attacks and security, 81 DECnet, 212 Dell Platinum Council, 113 DeMarco, Tom, 16, 226 Department of Defense, 222, 329, 332 Detroit Energy, 252 Digital books, 30 Digital Equipment, 48 Distributed computing, 217 Dodge, 189 Dogfooding, 11, 37, 38, 236 DTE Energy, 173 DuPont Dow Elastomers, 151 E Educational Testing Service (ETS), 151 E-government, 282, 285 Electrical distribution grid, 182 Elementary and Secondary Education Strategic Business Unit, 151 Elements of Programming Style, 2 Ellyn, Lynne, 173 advanced technology software planning, 175 Amazon, 184 artificial intelligence group, 175 Association for Women in Computing, 173 benchmark, 180, 181 BlackBerries, 184 Burns, Ursula, 175 Chrysler, 176 Cisco, 186 cloud computing, 183, 184 component-based architecture, 186 corporate communications customer service, 185 Crain's Detroit Business, 173 cyber security threats, 177 degree of competence, 187 diversity and sophistication, 182 DTE Energy, 173 energy trading, 176 engineering and science programs, 188 enterprise business systems policy, 186 executive MBA program, 176 Facebook, 185 fresh-out-of-the-university, 187 General Electric, 174 Google, 184 Grace Hopper, 174 grid re-automation, 182 Henry Ford Hospital, 174 internal social media, 185 International Coaching Federation, 178 iPads, 184 IP electrical grids, 182 iPod applications, 182 IT budgets, 186 IT responsibilities, 176 Java, 186 level of sophistication, 179 lobbying efforts, 181 medical computing, 175 Miller, Joan, 174 Mulcahey, Anne, 175 Netscape, 175 neuroscience leadership, 189 object-oriented programming, 186 Oracle, 186 peer-level people, 179 people system, 177 policies and strategies, 180 Radio Shack, 180 remote access capacity, 189 security tool and patch, 183 sense of community, 180 Shipley, Jim, 174 smart grid, 177, 182 smart meters, 182 smart phone applications, 183 swarming, 179 technical competence, 178, 179 Thomas, Marlo, 174 Twitter, 185 UNITE, 181 vendor community, 186 virtualization, 183, 184 Xerox, 175 E-mail, 9 Employee-relationship management (ERM), 56 Encyclopedia, 115 Encyclopedia Britannica, 292 ERP, 123 F Facebook, 244 Ellyn, Lynne, 185 Sridhara, Mittu, 73, 84 Temares, Lewis, 116, 121, 131 Wakeman, Dan, 169 Federal information technology investments, 299 Flex, 236 Ford, 102 Ford, Monte, 47 agile computing, 59 agile development, 62, 66 airplanes, 51 American Airlines, 47 Arizona Public Services, 66 Bank of Boston, 47 Baylor-Grapevine Board of Trustees, 47 BlackBerry, 60 board of Chubb, 51 board of Tandy, 51 business organizations, 63 business school, dean, 50 career writing technology, 67 client-server-type applications, 59 cloud technology, 62 CNN, 54 common-sense functionality, 49 consumer-based technology, 60 CRM, 56 Dallas Children's Medical Center Development Board, 48 Digital Equipment, 48 ERM, 56 financial expert, 69 frequent-flier program, 57 frontal lobotomy, 57 Harvard Business Review, 50 HR policies, 65 IBM, 48 information technology, 47, 52 Internet, 54 Internet-based protocol, 59 iPhone, 52 IT stuff, 58 Knight Ridder, 51 legacy apps, 59 mainframe-like applications, 59 management training program, 64 marketing and technical jobs, 48 Maynard, Massachusetts mill, 48 MBA program, 50 mentors, 49 Microsoft, 50 mobile computing, 62 New York Times, 53 operations center, 54 PDP-5, 49 PDP-6, 49 Radio Shack, 51 revenue management, 57 role models, 49 security paradigms, 62 self-service machine, 57 Silicon Valley companies, 68 smartphones, 54 social networking, 51, 53, 56, 58 stateful applications, 59 techie department, 48 The Associates First Capital Corporation, 47 transmission and distribution companies, 47 wireless network, 59 YouTube, 65 Fort Worth, 226 Free software foundation, 19 Fried, Benjamin, 1, 241 agile development, 25 agile methodologies, 26 Apple Genius Bar, 8 ARPANET, 19 Art of Computer Programming, 2 Bell Labs, 2 books and records, accuracy, 25 botnets, 23 Brian's and Rob Pike's, 2 cash-like principles, 29 CFO, 4 check writers, 18 chrome, 14, 18 classic computer science text, 1 cognitive surplus, 20 Columbia University, 1 compensation management, 7 competitive advantage, 9, 18 computer science degree, 1 computer scientists, 6 consumer-driven computing, 12 consumer-driven software-as-a-service offerings, 12 consumer-driven technology, 12 consumer-oriented technology, 14, 22 corporate leadership, 25 cost centers, 4 DARPA, 19 decision makers, 17 decision making, 13 360-degree performance management, 7 detroit energy, 30 digital books, 30 document workbench, 2 dogfooding, 11 e-books, 29 Elements of Programming Style, 2 e-mail, 9 end-user support, 7 engineering executive group, 4 European vendors, 6 file servers and print servers, 17 Folger Library editions, 30 free software foundation, 19 German company, 13 German engineering, 13 Gmail, 15 Godot, 26 Google, 1 books, 29 products, 5, 10 software engineers, 6 hiring managers, 6 HR processes and technologies, 6 IBM model, 13 instant messaging, 9 Internet age, 6 interviewers, training, 6 iPad, 29 iPhone, 29 IPO, 3 IT, engineering and computer science parts, 4 Knuth's books, 2 Linux machine, 8 Linux software, 19 machine running Windows, 8 Macintosh, 8 Mac OS, 9 macro factors, 11 Managing Director, 1 mentors, 1 microcomputers, 18 Microsoft, 5 Minds for Sale, 20 Morgan Stanley, 1–3, 5, 16 nonacademic UNIX license, 2 nontechnical skills, 5 oil exploration office, 17 open-source phone operating system, 20 outlook, 15 PARC, 19 performance review cycles, 7 personal computer equipment, 15 post-Sarbanes-Oxley world, 25 project manager, 13 quants, 24 rapid-release cycle, 26 R&D cycle, 24 regression testing, 27 role models, 1 shrink-wrapped software, 14 signature-based anti-virus, 22 smartphone, 20, 27 social contract, 8 society trails technology, 21 software engineering tool, 13 software installation, 14 supply chain and inventory and asset management, 10 SVP, 4 telephony, 17 ten things, 13 TMRC, 19 TROFF, 2 typesetter workbench, 2 UI designer, 14 university computing center, 28 videoconferencing, 12 Visicalc, 24 Wall Street, 23 Walmart, 6 waterfall approach, 25 XYZ widget company, 5 YouTube video, 20 G Gates, Bill, 39, 50 General Electric, 134 General Foods, 309, 326–328 General Motors, 33, 321, 329, 332 George Mason School of Information Technology, 309 Georgia Power Company, 191–193, 196 Georgia Power Management Council, 193 German company, 13 German engineering, 13 German manufacturing company, 232 Gizmo/whiz-bang show, 216 Gmail, 15 GoodLink, 217 Google, 1, 84, 85, 117, 217, 219, 220, 222, 235, 241, 263, 302, 319 apps, 314 books, 29 commercial products, 10 model, 293 Government Accountability Office (GAO), 305 4G program, 250 4G smartphone, 235 GTE, 231 Gupta, Ashish aspiration, organization, 256 bandwidth and network infrastructure, 267 BlackBerry, 261 business and customer outcomes, 274 capital investment forums, 269 career progression, 255 cloud-based shared infrastructure model, 263 cloud computing, 261, 262 collaboration, 272 communications infrastructure, 258 compute-utility-based model, 262 control and integrity, 268 core competency, 255 core network infrastructure, 267 core strengths, 256 cost per unit of bandwidth, 267 customer demands, 268 data protection, 261, 262 decision-making bodies, 269 demographics, 272, 273 device convergence, 263 dogfooding, 259 employee flexibility, 260, 264 engagement and governance, 269 enterprise market segment, 261 equipment management, 260 executive MBA, 256 fourth-generation LTE networks, 267 functional service departments, 270 Global Services, distributed organization, 257 Google, 263, 275 Google Apps, 266 handheld devices, 265 hastily formed networks, 258 IMF, 266 innovation and application development, 265 iPad, 257, 260, 261, 266,267 iPhone, 266 Japan, 257, 258 London Business School, 253 management functions, 257 management sales functions, 257 market segments, 259 MBA, General Management, 253 measurements, 271 messaging with voice capability, 264 mini-microcomputer model, 261 mobile communications network, 258 mobile-enabling voice, 259 mobile phone network, 260 mobile traffic explosion, 265 network infrastructures, 265 network IT services, 254 network quality, 257 new generation digital natives, 271 disadvantages, 273 Google, 273 opportunities, 273 Olympics, 263 opportunities, 275 organizational construct, 272 outsourced network IT services, 259 outsourcing, 271 per-use-based model, 262 portfolio and business alignment, 274 Portfolio & Service Design (P&SD), 253 primary marketing thrust, 264 product development thrust, 264 product management team, 259 project and program management, 255 resource balance, 270 scalability, 262 security, 262 Selley, Clive, 254, 255 service delivery organization, 254 single-device model, 264 smart devices, 267 smart phones, 266 telecommunications capability, 259 upward-based apps, 264 virtualization, 261 voice-over-IP connections, 258 Windows platform, 261 Gurnani, Roger, 231 accounting/finance department, 233 analog cellular networks, 250 AT&T, 249 bedrock foundation, 249 Bell Atlantic Mobile, 231 Bell Labs, 249 blogs, 244 broadband networks, 241 business benefits, 237 business device, 240 business executives, 238 business leaders, 248, 249 business relationship management, 248 buzzword, 239 CASE tools, 232 cloud computing, 239, 240 COBOL, 250 consumer and business products, 231 consumer electronics devices, 241 consumer telecom business, 233 customer-engagement channel, 244 customer forums, 244 customer support operations, 251 customer-touching channels, 236 degree of control, 246 distribution channel, 250 dogfooding, 236 ecosystem, 243, 249 enterprise business, 233 ERP systems, 236 face-to-face communications, 244 FiOS product, 235 flex, 236 "follow the sun" model, 239 German manufacturing company, 232 4G program, 250 4G smartphone, 235 hardware/software vendors, 247 information assets, 245 information technology strategy, 231 intellectual property rights, 244 Internet, 235, 239 iPhone, 243 Ivan, 232 Lowell, 232 LTE technology-based smartphone, 235 marketing, 251 MIT, 246 mobile technology, 234 Moore's law, 242 MP3 file, 235 network-based services, 240 Nynex Mobile, 233 P&L responsibility, 251 PDA, 238 personal computing, 235 product development, 234, 251 role models, 232 sales channels, 251 smartphones, 238 state-level regulatory issues, 251 state-of-the-art networks, 243 telecom career, 232 telephone company, Phoenix, 234 Verizon Communication, 231, 232 virtual corporations, 241 Web 2.0, 244 Williams Companies, 232, 233 WillTell, 233 wireless business, 233 H Hackers, 19 Harmon, Jay, 213 Harvard Business Review, 50 Harvard Business School, 331 Heller, Martha, 171 Henry Ford Hospital, 174 Hewlett-Packard piece, 129 Home computing, 219 Honda, 102 Honeywell, 219 Houghton Mifflin, 134, 136 I IBM, 48, 250 manpower, 311 model, 13 Indian IT outsourcing company, 255 Information technology, 52 Intel machines, 217 International Coaching Federation, 178 Internet, 9, 44, 54, 117, 235, 239, 316, 322 Internet-based protocol, 59 Interoperability, 341 iPads, 2, 94, 97, 184, 257, 260, 264, 267, 288, 289, 295, 296 IP electrical grids, 182 iPhones, 43, 52, 96, 101, 170, 181, 260, 264,296 iPod, 101 IT lifecycle management process, 37 Ivan, 232 J John Deere, 213 K Kansas, 226 Kernigan, Brian, 2 Knight Ridder, 51 Knuth, Donald, 2, 29 Kraft Foods Inc, 309 Krist, Nicholas, 28 Kundra, Vivek Clever Commute, 305 cognitive surplus, 303 command and control systems, 301 consumerization, 302 consumption-based model, 300 cyber-warfare, 301 Darwinian pressure, 302 desktop core configuration, 306 digital-borne content, 301 digital oil, 300, 307 digital public square, 304 enterprise software, 303 entrepreneurial startup model, 306 frugal engineering, 306 Google, 302 government business, 302 innovator's dilemma, 307 iPad, 302 IT dashboard, 302 leapfrog technology, 306 massive consumerization, 301 megatrends, 301 parameter security, 302 Patent Office, 305 pharmaceutical industry, 304 phishing attacks, 301 policy and strategic planning, 299 security and privacy, 301 server utilization, 300 social media and technology, 300, 306 storage utilization, 300 Trademark Office, 305 Wikipedia, 303 L LAN, 259 Lean Six Sigma improvement process, 211 Levy, Steven (Hackers), 19 Linux, 220 machine, 8 open-source software, 19 Lister, Tim, 226 London Business School, 73, 253, 256 Long-term evolution (LTE), 235 Lowell, 232 M MacArthur's intelligence officer, 327 Macintosh, 8 Mainframe computers, 118 Mainframe-like applications, 59 Marriott's Great America, 35 McDade, 327 McGraw-Hill Education, 133, 147, 150 Mead, Margaret, 221 Mendel, 311 Microcomputers, 18 Microsoft Corporation, 5, 11, 33, 36, 38, 41, 44, 46, 50, 156, 217, 223, 236, 250, 293 Microsoft Higher Education Advisory Group, 113 Microsoft's operational enterprise risk management, 33 Middlesex University, 189 Miller, Joan Apple products, 295 authority and accuracy, 292 award-winning ICT programs and services, 277 back locked-down information, 289 big-scale text issues, 294 big-time computing, 279 BlackBerry, 296 business management training, 281 business skills, 281 central government, 283 cognitive surplus, 291 community care project, 278 community development programs, 277, 278 computers, constituency office, 294 confidential information, 284 data management, 281 decision making, 286 democratic process, 288 economics degree, 278 e-government, 282, 285 electronic communication, 289 electronic-enabled public voice, 286 electronic information, 288 electronic media, 286 electronic records, 280, 284 electronic services, 294 e-mail, 289, 290, 295 forgiving technology, 296 front-office service, 282, 283 Google, 292 Google's cloud service, 290 Government 2, 287 Health and Social Care, 284 House business, 294 House of Lords, 288 ICT strategy, 289, 290 information management, 278 insurance company, 278 Internet information, 285 iPad, 288, 289, 296 IT data management, 279 management principle, 280 local government, 283 mainframe environment, 289 member-led activity, 287 messages, 289 Microsoft, 293 Microsoft's cloud service, 290 mobile electronic information, 284 mobile technology, 289 national organization, 284 network perimeters, 290 official government information, 285 on-the-job training, 281 organizational planning, 278 Parliamentary ICT, 277 project management, 279 public sector, 282 public transportation, 285 quango-type organizations, 283 representational democracy, 286 security, 290, 291 social care organization, 279 social care services, Essex, 278 social care systems, 284 social networking, 285 sovereignty, 291 sustainability and growth, 293 technical language, 294 technology skills, 281 transactional services, 285 transferability, 291 Web-based services, 285 Wikipedia, 291, 292 X-factor, 286 Minds for Sale, 20 Mitchell & Co, 333 MIT Media Labs, 149 Mobile computing, 62 Mobile technology, 234 Mooney, Mark, 133 artificial intelligence, 134 back-office legacy, 136 balancing standpoint, 145 BBC, 140 Bermuda Triangle, 135 BlackBerry shop, 142 Bureau of National Standards, 136 business model, 140 career spectrum, 144 cloud computing, 148 competitive intelligence and knowledge, 143 Connect, 141 customer-facing and product development, 135 customer-facing product space, 137 customer space and product development, 136 digital products development, 144 digital space and product, 146 educational and reference content, 139 educational products, 141 entrepreneur, 150 General Electric, 134 GradeGuru, 140 handheld devices, 142 hard-core technical standpoint, 146 hardware servers, 142 Houghton Mifflin, 134, 136 HTML, 138 industrial-strength product, 141 intellectual content, 148 Internet, 148 iPad, 138, 139, 142 iPhone, 142, 143 iTunes, 138 Klein, Joel, 147 learning management systems, 137 long-term production system, 141 Marine Corps, 134 McGraw-Hill Education, 133, 147 media development, 144 media space, 138, 142 mobile computing, 139 MOUSE, 150 online technology, 138 open-source capabilities, 142 Oracle quota-management system, 143 people's roles and responsibilities, 137 Phoenix, 149 product development, 149 publishing companies, 142 publishing systems, 137 Reed Elsevier, 133, 136 Salesforce.com, 144, 149 scalability testing, 145 senior business leaders, 146 social network, 148 soft discipline guidelines, 141 solar energy, 149 Strassmann, Paul, 135 technical skill set, 143, 144 testing systems integration, 145 The Shallows, 139 transactional systems, 142 trust and integrity, 145 TTS, QuickPro, and ACL, 144 Vivendi Universal, 134 War and Peace today, 139 Moore's law, 242 Morgan Stanley, 2, 3, 16 N NASA, 309, 333, 334 National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), 173 Naval Postgraduate School, 134 Netscape, 175 New Brunswick model, 282 News Corp., 147 New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), 87, 116, 223, 278 New York Times, 53 North American universities, 228 NSA/CIA software, 134 Nynex Mobile, 233 O Oil exploration office, 17 Open-source phone operating system, 20 Outlook, 15 P Pacer Software, 135 Paradigm shifts, 218, 220 Parks and Recreation Department, 126 PDP minicomputers, 212 Peopleware, 226 Personal computing, 235 Personal digital assistant (PDA), 238 Petri dish, 44 Phoenix, 211 Plauger, Bill, 2 Q Quants, 24 R Radio Shack, 51 Reed Elsevier, 133, 136 Reed, John, 335 Rubinow, Steve, 87 AdKnowledge, Inc., 87 agile development, 110 Agile Manifesto, 110 Archipelago Holdings Inc., 87 attributes, 108 capital market community, 91 cash/actual trading business, 88 channel marketing departments, 92 cloud computing, 97 CNBC, 89 collaborative technology, 95 collective intelligence, 95 communication skills, 102, 106 conference organizations, 99 consumer marketplace, 94 data center, 90 decision making, 105, 108 economy standpoint, 100 e-mail, 100 Fidelity Investments, 105 financial services, 92 IEEE, 101 innovative impression, 94 Internet, 98 iPad, 97 iPod device, 91 labor laws, 110 listening skills, 106 logical progression, 104 Mac, 96 mainframe, 104 management and leadership, 104, 105 market data system, 89 micro-second response time, 89 mobile applications, 94 multidisciplinary approach, 103 multimedia, 97 multi-national projects, 110 multiprocessing options, 99 network operating system, 103 NYSE Euronext, 87 open outside system, 88 parallel programming models, 99 personal satisfaction, 109 PR function, 106 proclaimed workaholic, 109 real estate business, 88 regulatory and security standpoint, 96 Rolodex, 94 Rubin, Howard, 99 server department, 97 software development, 89 sophisticated technology, 101 technology business, 88 technology integration, 91 trading engines, 90 typewriter ribbon, 94 virtualization, 98 Windows 7, 96 younger generation video games, 93 visual interfaces, 93 Rumsfeld, Donald, 222 S San Diego Fire Department, 224 Santa Clara University, 36 SAS programs, 131 Scott, Tony, 10, 33, 236 Android, 43 Apple Computer, 35 architectural flaw, 44 BASIC and Pascal, 35 Bristol-Myers Squibb, 33 Bunch, Rick (role model), 34 business groups, 42 COO, 39 Corporate Vice President, 33 Corvus disk drive, 36 CSC, 35 Defense department, 45 dogfooding, 37, 38 games and arcades, 35 General Motors, 33 IBM's role, 37 information systems management, 36 integrity factor, 40 Internet, 44 iPhone, 43 IT lifecycle management process, 37 leadership capability, 40 leisure studies, 34 macro-architectural threats, 44 Marriott's Great America, 35 math models, 36 Microsoft Corporation, 33, 36, 38, 41, 44, 46 Microsoft's operational enterprise risk management, 33 parks and recreation, 34 Petri dish, 44 playground leader, 42 product groups, 42 quality and business excellence team, 33 Santa Clara University, 36 Senior Vice President, 33 smartphone, 43 social computing, 38 Sun Microsystems, 36 theme park industry, 35 University of Illinois, 34 University of San Francisco, 36 value-added business, 33 Walt Disney Company, 33 Senior Leadership Technology and Product Marketing, 71 Shakespeare, 30 Shirky, Clay, 220 Sierra Ventures, 191 Silicon Valley companies, 68 Silicon Valley software factories, 323 Skype, 118 Smart Grid Advisory Committee, 177 Smartphones, 20, 27, 43, 54, 217, 238 Social care computer electronic record system, 279 Social computing, 38, 320 Social networking, 51, 53, 56, 58 Society trails technology, 21 SPSS programs, 131 Sridhara, Mittu, 71 Amazon, 76 American Airlines, 72 back-end computation and presentation, 80 banking, 77 B2B and B2C, 85 business/product departments, 82 business work context, 74 buzzword, 77 career aspiration, 73 career spans, 73 coders, 72 cognitive surplus, 79 competitive differentiation, 74 computing power, 78 contribution and energy, 85 convergence, 75 CPU cycles, 78 cross-channel digital business, 71 cultural and geographic implementation, 72 customer experience, 84, 85 customer profile, 76 data visualization, 79, 80 DDoS protection, 81 economies of scale, 77 elements of technology, 72 encryption, 82 end customer, 83 entertainment, 75 ERP system, 72 Facebook, 84 finance and accounting, 73 foster innovation and open culture, 81 friends/mentors/role models, 74 FSA, 76 gambling acts, 81 games, 79 gaming machines, 80 GDS, 72 global organization, 71 Google, 75, 84, 85 Group CIO, Ladbrokes PLC, 71 industry-standard technologies, 77 integrity and competence, 83 IT, 74, 82 KickOff app, 71 land-based casinos, 79 live streaming, 78 London Business School, 73 mobile computing, 78 multimedia, 84 new generation, 84 on-the-job training, 73 open-source computing, 79 opportunity, 80, 83 PCA-compliant, 81 personalization, 76 real-time systems, 74 re-evaluation, 81 reliability and availability, 77 security threats, 80 smart mobile device, 75 technology-intense customer, 85 top-line revenue, 74 trader apps, 82 true context, 73 underpinning business process, 76 virtualization, 78 Visa/MasterCard transactions, 78 Web 3.0 business, 76 web-emerging web channel, 76 Wikipedia, 79, 85 Word documents and e-mail, 82 work-life balance, 84 young body with high miles, 72 Zuckerberg, Mark, 73 Stead, Jerry, 214 Storefront engineering, 212 Strassmann, Paul, 228, 309 agile development, 340 Amazon EC2, 314 America information processors, 322 Annapolis, 340 AT&T, 332 backstabbing culture, 339 BlackBerry, 317 block houses, 319 CFO/CEO position, 337 CIM program, 309 Citibank, 337 Citicorp, 313, 339 cloud computing, 310, 311, 313 coding infrastructure, 341 communication infrastructure, 341 corporate information management, 329 Corporate Information Officer, 309 counterintelligence, 320 cyber-operations, 338 Dell server, 314 Department of Defense, 329, 332 Director of Defense Information, 309 employee-owned technology, 316 enterprise architecture, 316 exfiltration, 313 financial organizations, 320 firewalls and antiviruses, 312 General Foods, 309, 326–328 General Motors, 321, 329, 332 George Mason School of Information Technology, 309 Google apps, 314 government-supported activities, 326 Harvard Business School, 331 HR-related issues, 331 IBM manpower, 311 infiltration, 313 Internet, 316, 322 interoperability, 315, 317, 341 Kraft Foods Inc, 309 MacArthur's intelligence officer, 327 Machiavellian view, 327 mash-up, 316 military service, 331 NASA, 309, 333, 334 police department, economics, 312 powerpoint slides, 324 Radio Shack, 319 senior executive position, 334 service-oriented architecture, 316 Silicon Valley software factories, 323 social computing, 320 Strassmann's concentration camp, 318 structured methodologies, 342 U.S.

Navy, 318 Virginia Tech, 323 virtualization, 310, 311 VMware, 311 Web 2.0, 325 WikiLeaks, 320 Windows machine, 317 Xerox Corporation, 309, 326, 330, 338 Xerox video center, 318 Sun Microsystems, 36 Supply-demand organization, 157 T Tech Mahindra, 253, 255 Tech Model Railroad Club (TMRC), 19 Telephony, 17 Temares, Lewis, 113 adaptability, 128 American Marketing Society, 113 Apple device, 116 ARPANET and Internet, 117 BBA, 126 camera, 124 CIO responsibilities and duties, 127 classroom information, 119 client and terminal, 124 College of Engineering, University of Miami, 113 combination of degrees, 125 communication and business skills, 126 computer conference, 116 customer service, 130 cyber security, 121 day-to-day administration, 128 digital device, 125 document management, 129 electronic hospital record, 115 encyclopedia and Wikipedia, 115 entrepreneurial characteristics, 114 ERP, 123 Facebook, 116, 121 faculty members, 121 financial industry, 123 Fortune 500 commercial land, 114 Google, 117 GPS technology, 117 grocery store, 130 Hewlett-Packard piece, 129 higher education, 114, 122 high-performance computing, 119 IBM data center, 124 independent entrepreneurs, 114 Information Technology (IT), 113, 118 Jones, Sam, 131 leading-edge technology, 119 mainframe computers, 118 marketing, 122 matchmaker.com, 131 matchmakerexecs.com, 131 MBA, 126 MIT and Berkeley, 120 mobile technology, 115 New-Age, technology-savvy kids, 115 online degree, 121 passion, 128 personal computer, 117 philanthropism, 123 presentation skills, 128 project management, 126 rainmaker.com, 131 retail industry, 123 revenue producer, 123 RIM device, 116, 121, 124 Skype, 118 social media, 115, 116 SPSS and SAS programs, 131 telecommunications, 120 telemedicine, 118 TRS-80s, 129 Twitter, 116 up-to-date technology, 119 video entertainment, 116 voice/data integration, 117 Web 2.0 industry, 132 wireless computers, 115 yellow notepaper, 115 YouTube, 120 Texas, 226 The Associates First Capital Corporation, 47 Toyota, 102 Tracy, Michael, 212 Transmission and distribution companies, 47 Turner, Kevin, 39 Twitter, 244 Ellyn, Lynne, 185 Temares, Lewis, 116 U University computing center, 28 University of Chicago, 104 University of Florida, 139 University of Illinois, 34 University of San Francisco, 36 Utilities Telecom Council, 177 V Verizon Communications, 231, 232 Videoconferencing, 12 Virtual corporations, 241 Virtualization, 310, 311 Visicalc, 24 Vivendi Universal, 134 VMware, 311 Vodafone AirTouch, 231 voice capability, 259 Voice-response unit (VRU), 203 W Wakeman, Dan, 151 advanced placement program, 168 back-end systems, 154, 155 business maxims, 159 business peers, 160, 161 cloud computing, 168 collaborative environment, 160 Computer Choice, 170, 171 consumerization, 166, 170 credibility, 160 decision making, 152 defect-free code, 164 demand-supply model, 157 digital nation, 169 disaster recovery, 154 education business, 160 ElastomerSolutions.com, 151 ETS, 151 mission, 162, 163 packaging and selling information, 163 EXP program, 159 Facebook, 169 fair value and reliable assessments, 159 for-profit business, 152 Gartner CIO Academy, 157 Gen-Xer stuff, 169 Google, 170, 172 Heller, Martha, 171 intellectual property, 171 iPad, 169 IT core competency, 172 engine, 163 industry, 156 skills, 154 ITIL version 3, 158 judgment, 162 leadership and personal integrity, 161 McGenesis, Steve, 155 mentor, 155, 156 metrics and quantitative benchmarking, 166 on-demand services, 168 operational excellence, 163 operations and maintenance, 166 Salesforce, 154 scorecard, 164, 165 security budget, 167 security organization, 167 services and packaging, 171 Six Sigma, 164 smart phones, 170 standardization, 164 Taylor, John, 154–156 virtualization and cloud computing, 167, 168 Wallington, Pat, 175 Wall Street, 23 Wall Street Journal, 168 Walmart, 6, 50 Walt Disney Company, 33 WAN, 259 Web 2.0, 244, 325 Web 3.0 business, 76 Web 2.0 companies, 227 Web infrastructure, 215 Wichita, 226 WikiLeaks, 320 Wikipedia, 79, 85, 115, 185, 220, 291, 292, 303 Williams Companies, 232, 233 WillTell, 233 Wilson, Carl, 225, 228, 229 Wilson, Joe, 338 Wireless network, 59 World Wide Web, 266 X Xerox Corporation, 175, 326, 330, 338 Xerox video center, 318 Y Y2K, 222 YouTube, 20, 65


pages: 549 words: 147,112

The Lost Bank: The Story of Washington Mutual-The Biggest Bank Failure in American History by Kirsten Grind

asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, big-box store, call centre, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, corporate governance, fixed income, housing crisis, Maui Hawaii, money market fund, mortgage debt, naked short selling, NetJets, shareholder value, short selling, Shoshana Zuboff, Skype, too big to fail, Y2K

Killinger, a good listener, listened each time Wilson relayed her concerns. Occasionally he explained his reasoning: “We’re just too big.” When Killinger finally presented the structural change at a board of directors meeting in the summer of 1999, Wilson saw she had lost the battle. She told Killinger she would retire. He did not want her to leave and convinced her to stay, at least until the company completed its dreaded Y2K technology conversion. She stayed a strained two years, seeing many of her fears play out. Around the time of Wilson’s departure, Craig Tall was working out at a hotel gym in Tampa, Florida. He and Craig Chapman had spent the day driving around the city, visiting the offices of Aristar, the hard money lending division that WaMu had inherited several years earlier. Now Tall had a break before the two were scheduled to meet for dinner.

Senate, 318, 329–31, 334 Perrin, Michele, 130–33, 146, 168–70 Perry, Michael, 207 Pioneer Savings Bank, 38 PNC Bank, 84, 282n Polakoff, Scott, 4, 5, 250, 263, 273–74, 282 “The Power of Yes” campaign, 68–69, 73, 85, 100, 111, 125 prepayment penalties, 74 President’s Club, 68–69, 139–44, 145, 159–61, 188 Project West, JPM’s, 231–38, 246, 266, 283, 291, 292, 298 See also Scharf, Charlie Providian Bank, 154 Puget Sound Business Journal, 20, 159, 193 Puget Sound Savings and Loan Association, 211 Pugh Capital Management, 163 Pugh, Mary, 20, 163, 188, 191–93, 194 Ramirez, Tom, 142–44, 145, 154, 332 ratings, WaMu Bair and, 249, 250–52, 262, 263 CAMELS, 176, 228, 248, 262, 300 FDIC and, 248–50, 262, 274, 281–82 liquidity and, 286 Moody’s, 237, 261, 264–66, 264n, 286, 290–91, 292 OTS and, 176, 228, 248–50, 262, 263, 267, 274, 281–82 real estate agents, 143, 152 redlining, 64 Reed, William, 164 refinancing of mortgages, 85, 99, 101, 114, 116, 145, 153, 156, 162, 266 regulators/regulation Fishman-Frank meeting with, 254 guidelines for high-risk loans and, 151 JPM meetings with, 232–34 liquidity ratio and, 215 of mortgage brokers, 223 Reich’s views about, 222 Rotella and, 255 run on WaMu and, 213 Schumer’s IndyMac letter to media and, 207–8 and underwriting guidelines for Option ARMs, 222–23 WaMu liquidity and, 210, 215 See also specific regulator Reich, John appointment as OTC director of, 221 Bair and, 222–23, 248, 249, 250–52, 263, 270, 275, 287 Citigroup case and, 318 closure of WaMu and, 299, 300 congressional testimonies of, 318 criticisms of, 221 expansion of OTS by, 221–22 and Fishman-Frank letter to save WaMu, 295–96 Fishman/WaMu meeting with, 273–74 JPM and, 233–34, 283 Killinger discussions with, 227, 235, 245, 247 Killinger-FDIC meeting with, 244–45 liquidity of WaMu and, 287 Option ARMs and, 222–23 OTS-FDIC relationship and, 227–28, 248 personal and professional background of, 221 personality and character of, 221 politics and, 221 ratings for WaMu and, 249, 263 regulation views of, 222 retirement of, 317 sale of WaMu and, 282 Schumer’s IndyMac letter to media and, 208 self-image of, 221 subprime mortgages and, 223–24 views about WaMu of, 227–28 WaMu capital raise and, 294 WaMu enforcement order and, 258–59 WaMu-OTS relationship and, 222 WaMu as political threat to, 227, 244 See also Office of Thrift Services representations, 74 reunions, WaMu, 307–9, 311 Rinehart, Charlie, 42, 46–47, 48, 51, 53 risk analysts’ pressures on WaMu and, 122 banking industry and, 122n CAMELS ratings and, 176 decline in housing market and, 138 fixed-rate mortgages and, 122n Killinger’s “higher-risk lending strategy” and, 122–23 Longbrake’s warnings about housing market and, 162 of mortgage-backed securities, 74, 75, 120 and off-loading of risky loans, 154, 157–58, 161, 173 of Option ARMs, 138, 139 Pepper’s concerns about, 134 of subprime mortgages, 153–54 Vanasek concerns about, 150 WaMu pressures to sell mortgages and, 153–54 WaMu purchasing of subprime mortgages and, 129–30 See also Risk Management Group, WaMu Risk Management Group, WaMu Cathcart as head of, 150 Killinger-Rotella relationship and, 202 Longbrake and, 98 organization and structure of WaMu and, 98, 150–51 problems facing, 135 tracking of complex data and, 165–66 turnover in, 200 underwriting guidelines and, 126 WaMu five-year plans and, 126 See also Vanasek, Jim Robinson, John, 4–5, 272, 273–74, 301–2 The Rocky Horror Picture Show, 68–69 Rotary Club (Seattle): Killinger at, 238–41 Rotella, Esther, 1, 287, 333 Rotella, Steve appearance of, 105 appraisals issue and, 180, 181n Baker e-mail about housing to, 152 bank run and, 2, 213, 280 Bank Secrecy Act and, 202 blog of, 280, 302, 305 branch tour by, 109 Casey’s relationship with, 107 Chapman (Craig) and, 128 Chapman (Fay)-Killinger relationship and, 181, 182 Chapman’s (Fay) relationship with, 180 closure/seizure of WaMu and, 5, 301–2, 303, 305 compensation for, 174 congressional testimonies of, 144n, 329–30, 331 demands for resignation of, 205 FDIC lawsuit against, 333–34 Fishman’s appointment as successor to Killinger and, 255 Fishman’s attempts to sell WaMu and, 1–5, 287 Fishman’s relationship with, 259 Golon comments about, 197, 197n high-risk loans and, 331 higher-risk marketing strategy and, 180 hiring of JPM people by, 107, 128 home equity loans and, 331 Home Loans Group and, 109–10, 128, 137, 180, 192, 255 JPM departure of, 105, 197, 197n JPM severance of, 321 JPM-WaMu direct negotiations and, 232–33 Killinger concerns of, 201–2 Killinger defended by, 195–96 Killinger hiring of, 104–5, 106 as Killinger’s potential successor, 175, 202, 239 Killinger’s relationship with, 106, 137–38, 175, 180, 202, 205, 241–42, 329–30 liquidity of WaMu and, 286 Long Beach Mortgage concerns of, 109–10, 128, 137–38 management style of, 107–8 McKinsey review and, 241–42 minority lending and, 143 Moody’s meeting and, 265 off-loading of risky loans and, 157 Option ARMs and, 143, 197n OTS and, 180 Pepper’s relationship with, 149 personal and professional backgroud of, 104, 105 personality of, 105 as president and COO, 106 at President’s Club meetings, 141–42, 143 regulators and, 255 reputation of, 104, 255 resentment against, 107 responsibilities of, 175, 202, 280 as “savior,” 107 shareholder lawsuits against, 178 shareholders and, 193, 195–96, 197 subprime loans and, 197n, 331 tensions within WaMu and, 107, 180 underwriting standards and, 192 WaMu board and, 202, 239 WaMu future of, 175 in The WaMu Way video, 147 Russia: debt crisis in, 62 Ryder, Lynn hiring of, 19 Killinger–five emissaries meeting and, 203–6 at WaMu reunion, 307 sale of WaMu bid-rigging allegations concerning, 282n employees reactions to, 302–3, 305 FDIC approval of JPM bid for, 300 FDIC bidding process for, 290, 316–17 Fishman’s attempts to sell WaMu, 2–5, 262, 269–73, 279–80, 282–83, 284, 287–88, 293–97, 301 as “government assistance” transaction, 246 impact on Seattle of, 324 and JPM acquisition of WaMu, 3, 4, 6, 7, 300, 321–22 JPM first buyout offer for, 189 JPM profits on, 328–29 JPM-WaMu direct negotiations for, 189, 195, 229–38, 238n official reviews of, 315–17 Pepper’s consideration of, 25, 27 shareholders and, 283, 290 and WaMu as distressed asset, 273, 284 See also Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, WaMu and; JPMorgan Chase, WaMu and; Office of Thrift Services, WaMu and; specific person salespeople/managers compensation for, 140, 166–67 competition among banks and lenders for, 139–40 at Long Beach Mortgage, 166 Option ARMs and, 116–18 at President’s Club, 139–44 pressures on, 129 underwriting guidelines and, 137 WaMu purchasing of subprime mortgages and, 129–30 Salomon Brothers, 25–26 Sanchez, Alberto, 288 Santander Bank, 3, 229, 271, 282–83, 282n, 287, 288, 290, 297 savings and loan banks end of, 318 regulators of, 220–21 Savings and Loan Crisis (1989), 6, 25, 30, 39, 199, 220, 221, 248–49 Scharf, Charlie Bair’s meeting with, 266, 316 FDIC sale of WaMu and, 274, 283–84, 289–90, 290n FDIC sharing in losses of WaMu Option ARMs and, 246, 266 and government-assisted acquisition of WaMu, 266 independent examination of WaMu failure and, 316 JPM conversion of WaMu and, 320–21, 325 JPM lack of interest in acquisition of WaMu and, 271–72 JPM-WaMu direct negotiations and, 231–33, 234, 235, 236–37, 246, 271–72 Moody’s downgrade of WaMu and, 290n proposals for JPM acquisition of WaMu and, 235–38, 295 report to JPM board of, 283–84 Rotella at JPM and, 105 WaMu online data room and, 271–72, 291 Schneider, David Baker e-mail about housing to, 152 Chapman’s (Fay) concerns about housing market and, 179 Community Fulfillment Centers and, 159 Cuomo investigation and, 180–81 FDIC lawsuit against, 333–34 fraud reports and, 144, 144n, 180–81 high-margin products strategy of, 150, 151 hiring of, 128 as Home Loans Group head, 128 Jenne documentary on high-risk lending and, 172 JPM conversion of WaMu and, 321 Long Beach Management and, 137, 166 off-loading of risky loans and, 157 personality and character of, 128 at President’s Club, 140–41 professional background of, 128 Ramirez sales and, 143 reputation of, 128 shareholder lawsuits against, 178 shareholder relations and, 186 subprime commitment of, 159 underwriting standards and, 192 Schumer, Chuck, 207–8, 260 Seattle Art Museum, 2, 95, 324, 327–28 Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 247–48 The Seattle Times, 197n, 256, 281, 309 Seattle, Washington Dimon’s speech in, 325, 326–28 fireworks in, 326–27 impact of WaMu sale on, 324, 326–27 second-home buyers, 134 second lien investors, 157 secondary market blame for WaMu problems and, 241 Killinger’s views about, 330 losses in, 173 Option ARMs and, 112, 120 “originate-to-sell” concept and, 112 Perrin’s views about, 132 selling of subprime mortgage-backed securities to, 57, 58, 63, 73–75, 120 Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), 186n, 247 Senate Banking Committee Bernanke testimony before, 167 Gaspard discussion with, 284 Paulson-TARP discussion at, 293 September 11, 2001, 264 shareholders/investors, WaMu ads concerning, 88 capital raise and, 188–90, 191, 199, 202, 205, 245–46 closure of WaMu and, 5–7, 317 concerns and upset of, 176–77, 187, 188, 193–200, 206 Dimon’s comments about, 326 dividend cuts and, 175, 178, 185, 199 executive compensation and, 187–88 FDIC calls about WaMu failure from, 311–14 Glaze’s relations with, 176–77 Great Western acquisition and, 44 happiness of, 88 institutional, 206 JPM buyout offers and, 189, 245–46 Killinger’s relationship with, 47, 55, 81–82, 102, 173, 188, 189–91, 193–200 lawsuits against WaMu by, 102, 177–78, 195 and Pepper taking WaMu public, 16 Pugh and, 193 Rotella and, 193, 195–96, 197 sale of WaMu and, 283, 290 2008 meeting of, 184–86, 187, 189–91, 193–200, 206 WaMu board concerns of, 188, 194 short selling, maked, 247–48, 330 Silver Lake State Bank, 13–14 Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett: WaMu executives’ meetings at, 269–70, 287–88, 293–94, 295, 301 Smith Barney, 47 Smith, Orin, 163, 252 soccer field meeting, Dunnell-Baker, 124–25 software programs layoff monitoring and, 323 problems with mortgage data, 99, 101, 108, 164–65, 165n WaMu bank run and, 213 Y2K technology conversion and, 96 Sovereign Bancorp, 255, 283 Standard & Poor’s, 264n, 290 State of the Group meetings, WaMu, 146–48, 162 Steel, Bob, 233, 234, 265 Stever, James, 188 subprime lenders Bair’s concerns about, 218 expansion of, 58–59 fraud and, 71–73 Russian debt crisis and, 62 WaMu interest in acquisition of, 58, 59 See also Long Beach Mortgage subprime loans/mortgages Bair’s concerns about, 218, 223 Baker e-mail about housing and, 152 benefits of, 61 Chapman’s (Fay) concerns about, 179 collapse of market for, 167 compensation and, 128, 197 criticisms and warnings about, 64 decline in housing prices and, 153–54 defaults and delinquencies on, 161, 173, 225 definition of, 179 Dimon and, 230–31 early problems with, 152, 153 exit strategy for selling, 167–68 expansion of offerings of, 64, 70–71 foreclosures and, 77, 161 fraud and, 71–73, 164 as high-margin product, 150 “higher-risk lending strategy” and, 122 increase in sales of, 136–37 at IndyMac, 207 interest rates for, 58, 63, 66, 121–22 Jenne-Home Loans Group meeting about, 167–68 JPM losses on, 325 Killinger’s views about, 122, 137–38, 159, 241 lack of documentation for, 126 Lannoye opposition to, 197–98 Long Beach Mortgage reputation and, 176 losses from, 153, 161, 167 marketing of, 167–68 minorities and, 64 off-loading of, 154, 161 OTS criticism of WaMu for lending on, 122 OTS review of WaMu and, 224 ownership of, 77 plans to save WaMu and, 228 ratings on, 167 rebranding of, 167 risk and, 58, 153–54 Rotella and, 137–38, 197n, 331 secondary market and, 120 shareholder criticisms of WaMu board and, 194 at Superior Bank, 225 underwriting guidelines and, 126 Vanasek’s views about, 123 WaMu commitment to sale of, 158–59 WaMu goals and, 150 WaMu purchasing of, 129–30 WaMu stops making, 176 See also Long Beach Mortgage; mortgage-backed securities Summit Savings Bank, 39 Suntrust, 282n Superior Bank, 225 “systemic risk” exceptions, 314, 318 Tall, Craig Ahmanson acquisition and, 53 Chapman (Craig) hiring by, 61 and concerns about mortgage company acquisitions, 97 Countrywide-WaMu competition and, 127 Great Western acquisition and, 32, 33, 40, 41–42, 48 health of, 96–97 hiring of, 27 Killinger management style defended by, 55 Killinger’s appearance comment of, 88 Killinger’s relationship with, 97, 98, 203 Long Beach Mortgage acquisition and, 58, 59 merger and acquisitions responsibilities of, 38, 48, 49, 58, 59 NYSE bell ringing and, 54 personality and character of, 38 resignation of, 98 role at WaMu of, 97 TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program), 2, 285, 288, 291, 295, 313, 314–15, 319, 328 Taylor, Bean & Whitaker, 130 TD Bank, 271, 283, 289, 292, 294 Term Auction Facility (TAF), 285–86, 300 Texas: complaints against WaMu in, 99–100 Thousand Oaks, California: WaMu branch in, 6 too big to fail, 26, 309–10 Toscafund Asset Management, 297 Towers, Mike: Killinger–five emissaries meeting and, 203–6 TPG, 6, 189, 235, 237, 238, 245, 246, 257, 265–66, 279, 290, 319 tranches, 74 Treasury Department, U.S., 217, 218, 220, 225, 233, 234, 285, 288, 291, 294, 317 Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), 2, 285, 288, 291, 295, 313, 314–15, 319, 328 troubled bank list, FDIC, 3, 248–49, 262, 273 21st Century Mortgage, 72 UBS, 152 U.S.

(book), 131 Wholesale Division, WaMu, 129–30, 170 Wigand, Jim, 284, 289–90, 290n, 291 Williams, Robert, 175, 178, 244, 245, 265 Wilson, Liane acquisitions of WaMu and, 44 hiring of, 17–18, 19 Killinger–five emissaries meeting and, 203–6 Killinger’s marital problems and, 80–81 Long Beach Mortgage acquisition and, 60 mergers and acquisitions and, 49, 50–51 NYSE bell ringing and, 54 personality of, 50 resignation of, 95–96, 108 responsibilities of, 49, 95–96 software programs at WaMu and, 99 structure and organization of WaMu and, 96 at WaMu reunion, 307 Wisdorf, Doug, 206, 308, 309, 310, 319 women: Pepper’s hiring of, 19–20 World Economic Forum (Davos, Switzerland), 174 World Savings Bank, 119 Worldcom, 91 Y2K technology conversion, 96 We hope you enjoyed reading this Simon & Schuster eBook. Sign up for our newsletter and receive special offers, access to bonus content, and info on the latest new releases and other great eBooks from Simon & Schuster. or visit us online to sign up at eBookNews.SimonandSchuster.com * Many executives and directors held multiple positions over the years. I’ve noted their starting and ending titles here and listed only those who play reccurring roles


pages: 282 words: 92,998

Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It by Richard A. Clarke, Robert Knake

barriers to entry, complexity theory, data acquisition, Just-in-time delivery, MITM: man-in-the-middle, nuclear winter, packet switching, RAND corporation, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, smart grid, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, trade route, undersea cable, Y2K, zero day

The Cabinet members had been adamant about that. No regulation and no decision-making authority meant little potential for results. Nonetheless, we set off to work with the private sector and with government agencies. The more I worked on the issue, the more concerned I became. Marsh had not really been alarmist, I came to appreciate; he and his commission had actually understated the problem. Our work on the Y2K computer glitch (the fact that most software could not roll over from 1999 to 2000 and might, therefore simply freeze up) greatly added to my understanding of just how much everything was rapidly becoming dependent upon computer-controlled systems and networks connected in some way to the Internet. In the 2000 federal budget, I was able to add $2 billion for improved cyber security efforts, but it was a fraction of what was needed.

The two deeply disturbing aspects of this were that the computer security specialists could not stop the data from being stolen, even when they knew about the problem, and no one was really sure where it all was going (although some people later publicly attributed the attack to Russians). Every time new defenses were put in place, the attacker beat them. Then, one day, the attacks stopped. Or, more likely, they started attacking in a way we could not see. Early in 2000, when we were still glowing from our success in avoiding a Y2K problem, a number of the new Internet commerce sites (AOL, Yahoo, Amazon, E-Trade) crashed from what I was told was a DDOS, a term new to most people in 2000. This was the first “big one,” hitting numerous companies simultaneously and knocking them down. The motive was hard to discern. There were no monetary demands, nor was there a real political message. Somebody seemed to be trying out the concept of covertly taking over lots of people’s computers and secretly using them to attack.


pages: 339 words: 88,732

The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies by Erik Brynjolfsson, Andrew McAfee

"Robert Solow", 2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, 3D printing, access to a mobile phone, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, British Empire, business cycle, business intelligence, business process, call centre, Charles Lindbergh, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, clean water, combinatorial explosion, computer age, computer vision, congestion charging, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, digital map, employer provided health coverage, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, falling living standards, Filter Bubble, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, Freestyle chess, full employment, G4S, game design, global village, happiness index / gross national happiness, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, informal economy, intangible asset, inventory management, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, law of one price, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Mars Rover, mass immigration, means of production, Narrative Science, Nate Silver, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, Nicholas Carr, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, payday loans, post-work, price stability, Productivity paradox, profit maximization, Ralph Nader, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Report Card for America’s Infrastructure, Robert Gordon, Rodney Brooks, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, six sigma, Skype, software patent, sovereign wealth fund, speech recognition, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stuxnet, supply-chain management, TaskRabbit, technological singularity, telepresence, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, winner-take-all economy, Y2K

They not only made it possible to increase sales from $1 billion a week in 1993 to $1 billion every thirty-six hours in 2001, but also helped drive dramatic increases in the entire retailing and distribution industries, accounting for much of the additional productivity growth nationwide during this period.11 IT investment soared in the 1990s, peaking with a surge of investment in the latter half of the decade as many companies upgraded their systems to take advantage of the Internet, implement large enterprise systems, and avoid the much-hyped Y2K bug. At the same time, innovation in semiconductors took gigantic leaps, so the surging spending on IT delivered even more rapidly increasing levels of computer power. A decade after the computer productivity paradox was popularized, Harvard’s Dale Jorgenson, working with Kevin Stiroh at the New York Federal Reserve Bank did a careful growth accounting and concluded, “A consensus has emerged that a large portion of the acceleration through 2000 can be traced to the sectors of the economy that produce information technology or use IT equipment and software most intensively.”12 But it’s not just the computer-producing sectors that are doing well.

Watt, James wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) Waze Weitzman, Martin West, Darrell West, Martin wheelchairs, AI technology in When Work Disappears (Wilson) Why Nations Fail (Acemoglu and Robinson) Why the West Rules—For Now (Morris) Wikipedia Wilson, William Julius “winner-take-all” markets Winner-Take-All Society, The (Frank and Cook) Winship, Scott Woessmann, Ludger Wolff, Ed Wordsworth, William World Bank World Wide Web see also global digital network; Internet Wright, Gavin writing: by computers development of Wu, Lynn Xbox Y2K bug Yang, Shinkyu Yelp YouTube Zara More Praise for The Second Machine Age “Brynjolfsson and McAfee are right: we are on the cusp of a dramatically different world brought on by technology. The Second Machine Age is the book for anyone who wants to thrive in it. I’ll encourage all of our entrepreneurs to read it, and hope their competitors don’t.” —Marc Andreessen, cofounder of Netscape and Andreessen Horowitz “What globalization was to the economic debates of the late 20th century, technological change is to the early 21st century.


pages: 326 words: 91,559

Everything for Everyone: The Radical Tradition That Is Shaping the Next Economy by Nathan Schneider

1960s counterculture, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, altcoin, Amazon Mechanical Turk, back-to-the-land, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, Brewster Kahle, Burning Man, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, Clayton Christensen, collaborative economy, collective bargaining, Community Supported Agriculture, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Debian, disruptive innovation, do-ocracy, Donald Knuth, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Food sovereignty, four colour theorem, future of work, gig economy, Google bus, hydraulic fracturing, Internet Archive, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, Lyft, M-Pesa, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, means of production, multi-sided market, new economy, offshore financial centre, old-boy network, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, post-work, precariat, premature optimization, pre–internet, profit motive, race to the bottom, Richard Florida, Richard Stallman, ride hailing / ride sharing, Sam Altman, Satoshi Nakamoto, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Slavoj Žižek, smart contracts, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, transaction costs, Turing test, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, underbanked, undersea cable, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, Vanguard fund, white flight, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, working poor, Y Combinator, Y2K, Zipcar

As a teenager he was a professional table-tennis player and helped restructure the Catalan competition circuit. He turned his attention to larger injustices in his early twenties, when he read Erich Fromm’s diagnosis of materialist society and Henry David Thoreau’s call to disobedience. This was the late 1990s, high times for what is alternately called the global-justice or anti-globalization movement. The Zapatistas had set up autonomous zones in southern Mexico, and just weeks before Y2K, activists with limbs locked together and faces in masks shut down the World Trade Organization meeting in Seattle. According to Northeastern University anthropologist Jeffrey Juris, in Barcelona “Enric was at the center of organizing everything.”12 People called him el hombre conectado. Duran helped organize the Catalan contingent for protests at the 2000 World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings in Prague; a cop there whacked him on the head in the streets.

Consider Paul Allen—not the billionaire who co-founded Microsoft, but the one who brought the world Ancestry.com, the genealogy platform. Allen and his co-founder started with CD-ROMs in 1990 and then started making websites later that decade. They owned nearly the whole company and were soon turning a profit. They raised millions of dollars from investors, moved the headquarters from Utah to San Francisco, and by Y2K, they were edging toward being one of the top ten web properties in the world. Then there was an aborted public offering and a sequence of deals—deals that Allen now admits he didn’t fully understand. The slice of shares he owned grew smaller, and he finally left the company and its board in 2002, watching as Ancestry endured the vicissitudes of various private-equity buyers and sellers. He’s still proud of what the platform he helped build offers its users, but he has grown philosophical as he watches the current investor-owners squeeze the company for whatever they can get—even eliminating troves of users’ family memories in the process.


The Ecotechnic Future: Envisioning a Post-Peak World by John Michael Greer

back-to-the-land, Black Swan, clean water, Community Supported Agriculture, David Strachan, deindustrialization, European colonialism, Extropian, failed state, feminist movement, financial innovation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, hydrogen economy, hygiene hypothesis, illegal immigration, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, mass immigration, McMansion, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, post-industrial society, Project for a New American Century, Ray Kurzweil, Stewart Brand, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

Some of them come to the discussion with detailed plans for the perfect future, backed up figuratively — ​and now and again literally — ​with a backpack full of citations cherrypicked from favorite authors and the media. On the other end of the spectrum are those who have no idea what the world of the future will look like but cling to an unshakable faith that it will have to be better than the world of today. A good friend of mine once recounted a conversation he had in the last days of 1999 with someone who confessed she was deeply worried about the Y2K problem. He assumed that she meant she was worried about the struggle for survival in the aftermath of the massive systems collapse some people were still predicting at that point, but she quickly set him right. Her job was unsatisfying, her marriage was on the rocks and her life was at a standstill. What worried her was that she might wake up on January 1, 2000 and find that nothing had changed. 81 82 T he E cotechnic F u t u re It might seem that a boring job, a troubled marriage and a midlife crisis would be preferable to starving to death in a burned-out basement in the aftermath of cataclysmic social collapse.

, 50 Toynbee, Arnold, 194–197, 204–205, 232 Transcendentalists, 201 Transition Town movement, 185 transportation networks, 104–105, 147–8 U urban-agrarian ecologies, 7 urine as fertilizer, 113–114 V Vacca, Roberto, 192 Vico, Giambattista, 231–232 village farming ecologies, 7 Völkerwanderung, 44 W Warhol, Andy, 225 Welsh language, 47 wild foods, 102 Wounded Knee, 63 Wright, Frank Lloyd, 121–123 Y Y2K problem, 81 Z Ziarek, Ewa, 96 269 About the Author S ince coming of age in the energy crises of the 1970s, John Michael Greer has devoted three decades to the philosophy and practice of a renewed balance between humanity and nature. His previous book on the future of the industrial age, The Long Descent (New Society, 2008) and his weekly blog, “The Archdruid Report,” have made him one of the most influential voices in today’s peak oil scene.


The Humanure Handbook: A Guide to Composting Human Manure by Joseph Jenkins

Albert Einstein, clean water, Y2K

Humanure and the potential for large-scale . . . even a city size composting collection (apartment building toilets into a central collection dumpster), along with the crimes of the so-called “septic system,” has become one of my most favored topics of conversation and promotion. Often through direct exposition at our farm. Many thanks for your noble work of art and contribution to this stinky species of ape.” R.T. in CT From a Public Radio Commentary “People are saying that the Year 2000 computer problem could foul up a lot of stuff we usually depend on, all at once. I thought I’d give this Y2K Practice Day a try. Turn off the heat, lights, water and phones. Just for 24 hours. The day before Practice Day, I complained to Larry, telling him that I was bitterly disappointed not to try out an emergency toilet. This complaining really paid off. Larry, who’s also a writer researching Year 2000 emergency preparedness, phoned a man named Joe Jenkins, author of a book called the Humanure Handbook.

.: 48 Wales: 229 Ward, Barbara: 101 waste: 6 waste disposal systems: 83 waste production: 6 waste stabilization ponds: 92 pathogens in: 144 transmission of pathogens through: 143 wastewater treatment plants: 18, 91, 142 costs of maintenance and upkeep: 100 chlorine use in: 94 transmission of pathogens through: 142, 143 water: 16 (see also “drinking”) agricultural pollution of: 20 amount Americans use: 16 amount used by nuclear reactors: 16 appliance use: 208 bacterial analyses of: 136 cleanliness standards: 18 depletion: 20 drinking: 16 people currently lacking access to: 16, 19 drugs in: 19 EPA recreational water cleanliness standards: 18 flushing: 15 fun facts: 16 nitrate polluted: 19 per capita usage: 16, 20 pharmaceutical drugs in: 18 polluted: 17, 18 agricultural: 20 impacts: 17 number of people who die each year from: 19 U.S. coastal waters: 17 replacement rates: 20 swimming in: 17, 18 tons needed to flush: 20, 101 quantity used: 16 using it up: 20 water softeners: 207 water tables: 3 water use of appliances: 208 Watson Wick: 212 weed seeds: 62 Westerberg: 45 wetland: 213 wetland plants: 217 illustrated: 218 whipworm: 132, 149 White, Andrew D.: 77 Wiley: 45 witches: 78 wood ashes: 53 wood chips: 66 wood preservatives: 36 Woods End Laboratory: 65, 117 Woods End Agricultural Institute: 117 Woods End Europe: 117 World Scientists Warning to Humanity: 1 worm boxes: 66 worm castings: 66 worms, parasitic: 121, 132 Y Y2K: 187 yeasts: 27 Yersinia: 130 Yersiniosis: 130 Yucatan: 83, 203 Yonkers: 17 Z zooplankton: 92


One Up on Wall Street by Peter Lynch

air freight, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, buy and hold, corporate raider, cuban missile crisis, Donald Trump, fixed income, index fund, Irwin Jacobs, Isaac Newton, large denomination, money market fund, prediction markets, random walk, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Y2K, Yom Kippur War, zero-sum game

When One Up became a best-seller, so did Ravi Batra’s The Great Depression of 1990. The obituary for this bull market has been written countless times going back to its start in 1982. Among the likely causes: Japan’s sick economy, our trade deficit with China and the world, the bond market collapse of 1994, the emerging market collapse of 1997, global warming, ozone depletion, deflation, the Gulf war, consumer debt, and the latest, Y2K. The day after New Year’s, we discovered that Y2K was the most overrated scare since Godzilla’s last movie. “Stocks are overpriced,” has been the bears’ rallying cry for several years. To some, stocks looked too expensive in 1989, at Dow 2,600. To others, they looked extravagant in 1992, above Dow 3,000. A chorus of naysayers surfaced in 1995, above Dow 4,000. Someday we’ll see another severe bear market, but even a brutal 40 percent sell-off would leave prices far above the point at which various pundits called for investors to abandon their portfolios.


pages: 308 words: 98,022

Let's Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir) by Jenny Lawson

impulse control, Mason jar, Pepto Bismol, Rubik’s Cube, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer, Y2K

It was the house we were in when I became convinced that Y2K was basically the end of the world, and so on New Year’s Eve of 1999 I filled up the bathtub with water, so we’d have something to drink when the water from the tap turned into blood, but my cat didn’t realize it was full and fell in it, contaminating the whole thing. Then Victor laughed at my distress, which really pissed me off, because, Hello? I’m doing this for both of us. And then he abandoned me at a quarter to midnight to go check on the computers at work, and he wouldn’t even load the riot gun for me before he drove off. When he came back a few hours later, I’d barred the doors with couches to keep out the looters. I was too tired to move all the furniture, so I just told him that doors didn’t work anymore because of Y2K, and that he should just go sleep under his car.


pages: 471 words: 97,152

Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and Why It Matters for Global Capitalism by George A. Akerlof, Robert J. Shiller

"Robert Solow", affirmative action, Andrei Shleifer, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, business cycle, buy and hold, collateralized debt obligation, conceptual framework, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, experimental subject, financial innovation, full employment, George Akerlof, George Santayana, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, income per capita, inflation targeting, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, Jean Tirole, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, market bubble, market clearing, mental accounting, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, new economy, New Urbanism, Paul Samuelson, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price stability, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, random walk, Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, South Sea Bubble, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, tulip mania, working-age population, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

The discount rate, which had been 6% in the last half of 2000, was brought down to only 0.75% by November 2002.3 There is every reason to believe that both of these measures were effective. The economy rebounded.4 The reduction in interest rates appears to have had the intended effect. The previous boom had been top-heavy in expenditures on capital equipment.5 Investment in equipment and software had been especially high just prior to the Y2K scare. In this new boom the stimulus came from housing. In the four short years from 2001 to 2005 expenditures on housing increased by 33.1%, while GDP growth was only 11.2%.6 But then, as we have already recounted, odd things began to happen. These are the types of things that happen in booms as overconfidence takes hold. People began to buy housing as if this were their last chance ever to buy a house (because, they thought, prices would continue to escalate beyond their means), and speculators began to make investments in housing, as if other people were going to think that they should buy now, at almost any price, because they would not be able to afford to buy a house later.

., 188n3,4, 191n1 Wizard of Oz, The (Baum), 64 Wolk, Carel, 181n7 World War II, xxi, 4, 70, 72, 139, 145 Wurgler, Jeffrey, 191n3, 195n36 Yahata Steel Company, 194n23 Yale University, 109 Yamamoto, Isamu, 183n14 Yellen, Janet, 117, 188n1,2,10,11, 189n16 Yellow Pages, explaining to Muscovites, 26 Yom Kippur War, 141 Young, Roy A., 64, 185n17 Youngman, Anna P., 72, 186n38 Y2K scare, 169 Zandi, Mark, 196n14 Zeckhauser, Richard, 188n3,4 Zenji, 139 Zillman, Dolf, 179n3


pages: 361 words: 97,787

The Curse of Cash by Kenneth S Rogoff

Andrei Shleifer, Asian financial crisis, bank run, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, Boris Johnson, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, cashless society, central bank independence, cryptocurrency, debt deflation, disruptive innovation, distributed ledger, Edward Snowden, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fiat currency, financial exclusion, financial intermediation, financial repression, forward guidance, frictionless, full employment, George Akerlof, German hyperinflation, illegal immigration, inflation targeting, informal economy, interest rate swap, Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, Kenneth Rogoff, labor-force participation, large denomination, liquidity trap, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, moveable type in China, New Economic Geography, offshore financial centre, oil shock, open economy, payday loans, price stability, purchasing power parity, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, RFID, savings glut, secular stagnation, seigniorage, The Great Moderation, the payments system, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, transaction costs, unbanked and underbanked, unconventional monetary instruments, underbanked, unorthodox policies, Y2K, yield curve

This might sound ridiculous to young people familiar with modern database programs, but financial firms try hard to avoid changing software systems too often, and some of the systems are surprisingly antiquated. One only has to recall the “Y2K” computer problem that arose at the turn of the century. In the run-up to New Year’s Day in January 2000, software engineers around the world scrambled to patch software, because many legacy computer systems defined years by two digits instead of four, making it impossible for the year 2000 to be distinguished from the year 1900. (A bit like when Romanian gymnast Nadia Comaneci scored the first perfect 10.00 in the 1976 Olympics, but the crowd was momentarily silenced when the scoreboard registered her majestic performance as only 1.00. The scoreboard had just three digits instead of four, because it had never occurred to its Swiss designers that anyone might ever achieve a perfect score.) In a sense, Y2K for negative interest rates has already come and gone.


Gaming the Vote: Why Elections Aren't Fair (And What We Can Do About It) by William Poundstone

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, business cycle, Debian, desegregation, Donald Trump, en.wikipedia.org, Everything should be made as simple as possible, global village, guest worker program, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, invisible hand, jimmy wales, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Kenneth Arrow, manufacturing employment, Nash equilibrium, Paul Samuelson, Pierre-Simon Laplace, prisoner's dilemma, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, slashdot, the map is not the territory, Thomas Bayes, transcontinental railway, Unsafe at Any Speed, Y2K

• the Prius of voting systems· heretics· zealots • a one-word answer no one understands· regret in Peru· a car with Kennedy and Nixon bumper stickers· minimal coalitions· third parties· nursery effect· moderates· the universal political fantasy· a mission from God ,; Contents 279 17. Blue Man Coup Karma - George Allen - YouTube - Glenda Parker's vacation money - the Blue Man from Bozeman - Y2K· the Heimlich maneuver - Smurfs -little microchips inserted in our brains - conspiracy theories Glossary 285 Addresses Notes 291 293 Sources 313 Acknowledgments 325 327 Index ," GAMING THE VOTE Prologue: The Wizard and the Lizard Even when he was Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, David Duke felt he was destined for something bigger. The Klan was just one of a number of organizations that Duke had joined, been actively involved with, and discarded when they no longer fit his purpose.

Had Parker gotten just a little more publicity-from the debate, ads, anything-she undoubtedly could have wrested 7,218 more votes from Webb. Allen then would have won and prevented a Democratic takeover of the Senate. Guess how much Parker spent on her campaign? "Less than $600" in contributions, she told a reporter, plus several years' worth of her own vacation money. Then there's the Blue Man from Bozeman. In 1999, Stan Jones began drinking colloidal silver, a supposed ('natural" antibiotic. He feared that Y2K computer crashes would lead to societal collapse. That, in turn, would mean no antibiotics for the marauding bands of postapocalyptic survivors. The silver potion has the side effect of turning the skin a slatey blue. When Jones first ran for U.S. Senate in 2002, his complexion was a hue that might otherwise signal a dinner compan- 280 Blue Man Coup ion's desperate need for the Heimlich maneuver.


pages: 471 words: 109,267

The Verdict: Did Labour Change Britain? by Polly Toynbee, David Walker

banking crisis, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bob Geldof, Boris Johnson, call centre, central bank independence, congestion charging, Corn Laws, Credit Default Swap, decarbonisation, deglobalization, deindustrialization, Etonian, failed state, first-past-the-post, Frank Gehry, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, high net worth, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), knowledge economy, labour market flexibility, market bubble, mass immigration, millennium bug, moral panic, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, pension reform, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, Right to Buy, shareholder value, Skype, smart meter, stem cell, The Spirit Level, too big to fail, University of East Anglia, working-age population, Y2K

Labour, as a quid pro quo to the free-speech lobby and as a sop to faiths that resented Christianity’s unique protection, used the 2008 Criminal Justice and Immigration Act to abolish the offence of blasphemy in England and Wales. The courts had already discarded it; after the BBC broadcast Jerry Springer: The Opera in January 2005, the fundamentalist group Christian Voice failed to persuade the judges to convict. And on such religious totems as abortion and stem cell research, rationalism ruled OK among Labour ministers. The worldwide scare over the Y2K millennium bug has become a classic of media hype and public gullibility – there was panicky talk of machines stopping and planes falling out of the sky. Ministers kept their cool and in October 1999, a couple of months before the witching hour, the NAO reported that the non-profit company Action 2000 set up by Whitehall to check IT systems had flashed only a couple of amber risks. ‘A major achievement, the risk of major failures arising as result of the millennium threat is now low,’ the auditors opined, and so it proved.

., 1 Rosetta Stone, 1 Rosyth, 1 Rotherham, 1, 2, 3 Royal Opera House, 1 Royal Shakespeare Company, 1 Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, 1 Rugby, 1 rugby union, 1 Rumsfeld, Donald, 1 rural affairs, 1, 2 Rushdie, Salman, 1 Russia, 1, 2 Rwanda, 1 Ryanair, 1, 2 Sainsbury, Lord David, 1 St Austell, 1 St Bartholomew’s Hospital, 1, 2 St Pancras International station, 1 Salford, 1, 2, 3, 4 Sanchez, Tia, 1 Sandwell, 1 Sarkozy, Nicolas, 1, 2 Savill, Superintendent Paul, 1 Saville, Lord, 1 savings ratio, 1 Scandinavia, 1, 2, 3 Scholar, Sir Michael, 1 school meals, 1, 2 school uniforms, 1 school-leaving age, 1 schools academies, 1, 2, 3, 4 building, 1 class sizes, 1 comprehensive schools, 1, 2 faith schools, 1, 2, 3, 4 grammar schools, 1, 2, 3 and inequality, 1 nursery schools, 1 and PFI, 1, 2, 3 police in, 1, 2, 3 primary schools, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 private schools, 1, 2 secondary schools, 1, 2, 3 in special measures, 1 special schools, 1 specialist schools, 1 and sport, 1 science, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Scotland, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and children, 1 devolution, 1 electricity generation, 1 and health, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Scottish parliament, 1, 2 Section 1, 2 security services, 1 MI5, 1, 2, 3 Sedley, Stephen, 1 segregation, 1 self-employment, 1 Sellafield, 1 Serious Organized Crime Agency, 1 sex crimes, 1 Sex Discrimination Act, 1 Shankly, Bill, 1 Sharkey, Feargal, 1 Shaw, Liz, 1 Sheen, Michael, 1 Sheffield, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Sheringham, 1 Shetty, Shilpa, 1 Shipman, Harold, 1 shopping, 1 Short, Clare, 1 Siemens, 1 Siena, 1 Sierra Leone, 1, 2 Skeet, Mavis, 1 skills councils, 1 slavery, 1 Slough, 1 Smith, Adam, 1 Smith, Chris, 1 Smith, Jacqui, 1, 2 Smith, John, 1, 2 Smithers, Professor Alan, 1, 2 smoking ban, 1, 2 Snowden, Philip, 1 social care, 1, 2, 3 Social Chapter opt-out, 1 social exclusion, 1, 2 Social Fund, 1 social mobility, 1, 2 social sciences, 1 social workers, 1 Soham murders, 1, 2, 3, 4 Solihull, 1, 2 Somalia, 1, 2 Souter, Brian, 1 South Africa, 1 South Downs, 1 Spain, 1, 2, 3 special advisers, 1 speed cameras, 1 Speenhamland, 1 Spelman, Caroline, 1 Spence, Laura, 1 sport, 1, 2 see also football; Olympic Games Sri Lanka, 1, 2 Stafford Hospital, 1 Staffordshire University, 1 Standard Assessment Tests (Sats), 1, 2, 3 Standards Board for England, 1 statins, 1, 2, 3 stem cell research, 1 STEM subjects, 1 Stephenson, Sir Paul, 1 Stern, Sir Nicholas, 1, 2 Stevenson, Lord (Dennis), 1 Stevenson, Wilf, 1 Steyn, Lord, 1 Stiglitz, Joseph, 1 Stockport, 1 Stonehenge, 1 Stoppard, Tom, 1 Straw, Jack, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 student fees, 1 Stuff Happens, 1 Sudan, 1, 2 Sugar, Alan, 1 suicide bombing, 1 suicides, 1 Sun, 1, 2 Sunday Times, 1, 2 Sunderland, 1, 2 supermarkets, 1, 2 Supreme Court, 1, 2 Sure Start, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 surveillance, 1, 2 Sutherland, Lord (Stewart), 1 Swansea, 1 Sweden, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Swindon, 1 Taliban, 1, 2 Tallinn, 1 Tanzania, 1 Tate Modern, 1 Taunton, 1 tax avoidance, 1, 2, 3 tax credits, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 council tax credit, 1 pension credit, 1, 2, 3 R&D credits, 1 taxation, 1, 2 10p tax rate, 1 capital gains tax, 1, 2 corporation tax, 1, 2, 3, 4 council tax, 1, 2 fuel duty, 1, 2, 3 green taxes, 1, 2 and income inequalities, 1 income tax, 1, 2, 3, 4 inheritance tax, 1, 2 poll tax, 1 stamp duty, 1, 2, 3 vehicle excise duty, 1 windfall tax, 1, 2, 3 see also National Insurance; VAT Taylor, Damilola, 1 Taylor, Robert, 1 teachers, 1, 2, 3 head teachers, 1, 2 salaries, 1, 2 teaching assistants, 1, 2 teenage pregnancy, 1, 2, 3 Teesside University, 1 television and crime, 1 and gambling, 1 talent shows, 1 television licence, 1, 2, 3 Territorial Army, 1 terrorism, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 Terry, John, 1 Tesco, 1, 2, 3, 4 Tewkesbury, 1 Thames Gateway, 1 Thameswey, 1 Thatcher, Margaret, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 Thatcherism, 1, 2, 3 theatre, 1 Thornhill, Dorothy, 1 Thorp, John, 1 Tibet, 1 Tilbury, 1 Times, The, 1 Times Educational Supplement, 1, 2 Timmins, Nick, 1 Titanic, 1 Tomlinson, Mike, 1 Topman, Simon, 1, 2 torture, 1, 2 trade unions, 1, 2, 3 Trades Union Congress (TUC), 1, 2, 3 tramways, 1 transport policies, 1, 2 Trident missiles, 1, 2, 3 Triesman, Lord, 1 Turkey, 1, 2 Turnbull, Lord (Andrew), 1 Turner, Lord (Adair), 1, 2, 3 Tweedy, Colin, 1 Tyneside Metro, 1 Uganda, 1 UK Film Council, 1 UK Sport, 1 UK Statistics Authority, 1 unemployment, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 United Nations, 1, 2, 3 United States of America, 1, 2 Anglo-American relationship, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and child poverty, 1 and clean technologies, 1 economy and business, 1, 2, 3 and education, 1, 2, 3 and healthcare, 1, 2 and income inequalities, 1 and internet gambling, 1 and minimum wage, 1 universities, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and migration, 1 and terrorism, 1 tuition fees, 1 University College London Hospitals, 1 University for Industry, 1 University of East Anglia, 1 University of Lincoln, 1 Urban Splash, 1, 2 Vanity Fair, 1 VAT, 1, 2, 3 Vauxhall, 1 Venables, Jon, 1 Vestas wind turbines, 1 Victoria and Albert Museum, 1 Waitrose, 1 Waldfogel, Jane, 1 Wales, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and children, 1 devolution, 1 Walker, Sir David, 1 walking, 1, 2 Walsall, 1 Wanless, Sir Derek, 1 Wanstead, 1 Warm Front scheme, 1 Warner, Lord Norman, 1 Warsaw, 1 Warwick accord, 1 water utilities, 1 Watford, 1 welfare benefits child benefit, 1, 2 Employment Support Allowance, 1 and fraud, 1, 2, 3, 4 housing benefit, 1 incapacity benefit, 1, 2 Income Support, 1 Jobseeker’s Allowance, 1, 2, 3 and work, 1, 2 Welsh assembly, 1, 2 Wembley Stadium, 1 Westfield shopping mall, 1 Wetherspoons, 1 White, Marco Pierre, 1 Whittington Hospital, 1 Wiles, Paul, 1 Wilkinson, Richard, and Kate Pickett, 1 Williams, Professor Karel, 1 Williams, Raymond, 1 Williams, Rowan, 1 Wilson, Harold, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 Wilson, Sir Richard, 1 wind turbines, 1, 2 Winslet, Kate, 1 winter fuel payments, 1 Wire, The, 1 Woking, 1, 2 Wolverhampton, 1 Woolf, Lord, 1 Wootton Bassett, 1, 2 working-class culture, 1 working hours, 1, 2 World Bank, 1 Wrexham, 1 Wright Robinson School, 1, 2, 3 xenophobia, 1 Y2K millennium bug, 1 Yarlswood detention centre, 1 Yeovil, 1 Yiewsley, 1 York, 1, 2, 3, 4 Young Person’s Guarantee, 1 Youth Justice Board, 1 Zimbabwe, 1, 2 About the Author Polly Toynbee is the Guardian’s social and political commentator. Previously she was the BBC’s Social Affairs Editor and columnist for the Independent and the Observer. She is the author of Hard Work: Life in Low-Pay Britain, Hospital and Lost Children.


Becoming Bulletproof: Protect Yourself, Read People, Influence Situations, and Live Fearlessly by Evy Poumpouras

British Empire, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, cuban missile crisis, fear of failure, Lyft, Ronald Reagan, uber lyft, Y2K

The 1960s became a decade of fearing for personal safety with the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy. In the 1970s, it was the foreign oil crisis, the political upheaval with the impeachment of President Nixon, and the skyrocketing of crime throughout the United States. In the 1980s, it was the fear of external threats against the United States, particularly with Iran and the Soviet Union. In the 1990s it was the Y2K scare, fearing that all life and technology would cease once the calendar year hit 2000. The early 2000s ushered in a global threat unlike anything before it—terrorism. Today we have mass shootings. A 2018 Pew Research Center study found that more than 50 percent of teenagers were concerned that a shooting would happen in their school, with 25 percent of them being “very worried.” This fear persists despite the statistical improbability of any one student becoming a school-shooting victim.

,” 172–73 Wi-Fi, 89 William Esper Studies, 189 windows, 95–97, 116, 119–20 Wintour, Anna, 184 Wolz, Birgit, 274 women voice of, 191, 193, 195 See also gender words and detecting deception, 199–201 and influence, 16, 209–11 interrupting, 200 power of, 209–10 purpose of, 210 rate of, 248 and reading people, 149 See also speech/verbal behavior; voice workplace: confrontation in, 67–68 World Trade Center bombing of, 1–11, 71, 72 choices during, 297 and fear, 296, 297, 298 finding meaning in, 71 and helping others, 71 impact on Poumpouras of, 71, 72 lack of cell phone service at, 83 and post-9/11 world, 14–15 and roof of World Trade Center, 97 search-and-rescue effort at, 10–11, 71 WrestleMania (MetLife Stadium): Poumpouras at, 83, 84 X X: getting off the, 56–58 Y Y2K scare, 27 yawning, 158 you and controlling your image, 181–83 as hero, 299 how others influence, 265–76 mirroring, 184 others reading, 137, 181–86 people who are like, 258–59 should know better, 171 sound just like me, 247–48 what others think of, 271–73 See also self; standing your ground “You talkin’ to me?”, 171–72 “You’re picking on me,” 176 “You’re so dumb,” 171 An Imprint of Simon & Schuster, Inc. 1230 Avenue of the Americas New York, NY 10020 www.SimonandSchuster.com Copyright © 2020 by Evy Poumpouras Some names and identifying characteristics have been changed.


pages: 490 words: 40,083

PostgreSQL: introduction and concepts by Bruce Momjian

computer age, Debian, Y2K

General Questions 1.1) What is POSTGRESQL? 1.2) What’s the copyright on POSTGRESQL? 1.3) What Unix platforms does POSTGRESQL run on? 1.4) What non-Unix ports are available? 1.5) Where can I get POSTGRESQL? 1.6) Where can I get support? 1.7) What is the latest release? 1.8) What documentation is available? 1.9) How do I find out about known bugs or missing features? 1.10) How can I learn SQL? 1.11) Is POSTGRESQL Y2K compliant? 1.12) How do I join the development team? 1.13) How do I submit a bug report? 1.14) How does POSTGRESQL compare to other DBMS’s? User Client Questions 2.1) Are there ODBC drivers for POSTGRESQL? 2.2) What tools are available for hooking POSTGRESQL to Web pages? 2.3) Does POSTGRESQL have a graphical user interface? A report generator? An embedded query language interface? 2.4) What languages are available to communicate with POSTGRESQL?

There is a nice tutorial at http://w3.one.net/˜jhoffman/sqltut.htm and at http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/graeme_birchall/HTM_COOK.HTM . Another one is Teach Yourself SQL in 21 Days, Second Edition at: http://members.tripod.com/er4ebus/sql/index.htm 240 APPENDIX A. ADDITIONAL RESOURCES Many of our users like The Practical SQL Handbook, Bowman, Judith S., et al., Addison–Wesley. Others like The Complete Reference SQL, Groff et al., McGraw–Hill. 1.11) Is POSTGRESQL Y2K compliant? Yes, we easily handle dates past the year 2000AD, and before 2000BC. 1.12) How do I join the development team? First, download the latest source and read the POSTGRESQL Developers documentation on our Web site, or in the distribution. Second, subscribe to the pgsql-hackers and pgsql-patches mailing lists. Third, submit high-quality patches to pgsql-patches. There are about a dozen people who have commit privileges to the POSTGRESQL CVS archive.


pages: 460 words: 122,556

The End of Wall Street by Roger Lowenstein

Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, break the buck, Brownian motion, Carmen Reinhart, collateralized debt obligation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, diversified portfolio, eurozone crisis, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fear of failure, financial deregulation, fixed income, high net worth, Hyman Minsky, interest rate derivative, invisible hand, Kenneth Rogoff, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, Martin Wolf, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, negative equity, Northern Rock, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, race to the bottom, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, savings glut, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, statistical model, the payments system, too big to fail, tulip mania, Y2K

For the first time, he questioned his friend’s judgment.2 Paulson and Bernanke were each worrying about bigger problems, the so-called systemic issues that could lead to a crisis in banking or funding and even a panic. Neither was sure how one might arise, and predicting such events is nearly impossible. In 1998, the one-two punch of Russia’s debt default and the collapse of the hedge fund LTCM had caught markets and ministers by surprise. Yet the following year, when Greenspan had injected liquidity into the market to ease the much ballyhooed fear of a Y2K computer collapse, no crisis manifested. Still, there is a logic to why crises strike financial markets. Markets function on credit, and when investors become concerned about a cessation of credit, they are liable to panic.m Even a single investor’s panic can have a bearing on the group. Each investor worries whether the fear will be contagious and naturally considers taking preemptive action (i.e., selling).

See short selling short-term paper diet of statistical modeling and stock prices of firms on See also specific firms war with hedge funds Wall Street Journal Walsh, Mark Warsh, Kevin Washington Mutual bondholders concern over JPMorgan Chase and lack of risk control by leadership change at mortgage bubble and mortgage practices of shareholders stock price of subprime mortgages and Weil, Gotshal & Manges Weill, Sanford I. (Sandy) Wells Fargo Wen Jiabao Whitney, Meredith Wilkinson, Jim Willumstad, Robert Wilson, Kendrick Winkelried, Jon Winters, Bill WorldCom Wriston, Walter Y2K computer collapse Zandi, Mark Zubrow, Barry ABOUT THE AUTHOR Roger Lowenstein, the author of four previous books, reported for The Wall Street Journal for more than a decade. He is now a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and other publications, and a columnist for Bloomberg. He has three children and lives with his wife in Newton, Massachusetts. a Lenders used various terms for this product.


Stock Market Wizards: Interviews With America's Top Stock Traders by Jack D. Schwager

Asian financial crisis, banking crisis, barriers to entry, beat the dealer, Black-Scholes formula, commodity trading advisor, computer vision, East Village, Edward Thorp, financial independence, fixed income, implied volatility, index fund, Jeff Bezos, John Meriwether, John von Neumann, locking in a profit, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, money market fund, Myron Scholes, paper trading, passive investing, pattern recognition, random walk, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, short selling, Silicon Valley, statistical arbitrage, the scientific method, transaction costs, Y2K

It's a Japanese cartoon character that is very popular right now. Why are you shorting it, if your kids like it? Because I think it's a fad. It's a one-product company. [Looking at the screen, Cohen comments] I think the market may go a little higher, but I'm actually turning very negative. Why is that? The big caps are moving higher, but the rally has no breadth. The market is moving up on light volume. Also, people will start to get more concerned about Y2K as we get closer to the end of the year. A Fed announcement concerning interest rates is scheduled for the day I am visiting. As we approach within fifteen minutes of the announcement, Cohen begins entering a slew of buy and sell orders well removed from the prevailing market prices. "In case the market does something stupid," he explains. In other words, he is positioning himself to take the opposite side of any extreme reaction—price run-up or sell-off—in response to the Fed report.

The few questions and answers that I manage to record contain nothing that I wish to retain. The remainder of the interview, with the exception of the final section, is conducted in the more sedate environs of Cohen's office. short ahead of (he report. I was bearish because a lot of computer and software companies were missing t h e i r numbers [reporting lower- than-expecled earnings] due to Y2K issues. Customers were delaying the installation of new systems because w i t h the year 2000 just around the corner, they figured that they might as well stick with their existing systems. 1 went short the slock at $169. The earnings came out. and they were just: phenomenal—-a complete blowout! I got out sharply higher When did you first become aware that there was a stock market? When I was about thirteen years old.


pages: 494 words: 116,739

Geek Heresy: Rescuing Social Change From the Cult of Technology by Kentaro Toyama

Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, blood diamonds, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer vision, conceptual framework, delayed gratification, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, end world poverty, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, fundamental attribution error, germ theory of disease, global village, Hans Rosling, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Khan Academy, Kibera, knowledge worker, liberation theology, libertarian paternalism, longitudinal study, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, microcredit, mobile money, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, North Sea oil, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pattern recognition, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, Powell Memorandum, randomized controlled trial, rent-seeking, RFID, Richard Florida, Richard Thaler, school vouchers, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, technoutopianism, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Upton Sinclair, Walter Mischel, War on Poverty, winner-take-all economy, World Values Survey, Y2K

The reforms they put in place unleashed the country’s economic boom. Others note how Indian technology companies got a boost from the Y2K scare. Corporations worldwide worried that their computer systems would reach the year ’00 and mistake it for 1900, not 2000. The fix – to upgrade to four-digit years – was technically straightforward but tedious. Indian companies filled the demand with low-cost engineering. Still others mention that educated Indians – unlike their Chinese peers – speak English, and so they can readily communicate with American firms. But none of these explanations satisfied the Pakistani professionals I met. Pakistan, too, had been open to foreign investment since at least 1991. The Y2K crisis was worldwide, and Pakistani companies could have risen to the opportunity. The Pakistani elite also speak English.


pages: 458 words: 134,028

Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes by Mark Penn, E. Kinney Zalesne

addicted to oil, affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, big-box store, call centre, corporate governance, David Brooks, Donald Trump, extreme commuting, Exxon Valdez, feminist movement, glass ceiling, God and Mammon, Gordon Gekko, haute couture, hygiene hypothesis, illegal immigration, immigration reform, index card, Isaac Newton, job satisfaction, labor-force participation, late fees, life extension, low cost airline, low skilled workers, mobile money, new economy, RAND corporation, Renaissance Technologies, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Rubik’s Cube, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Superbowl ad, the payments system, Thomas L Friedman, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, War on Poverty, white picket fence, women in the workforce, Y2K

In part because we’re less well trained in math and science than we are in language and literature. As a country, we suspect we’re not that good at numbers. They scare us, almost as much as public speaking. At the same time they fascinate us. Many of us have a healthy mistrust of numbers, because some people, in an effort to advance an agenda, misuse them. Do you remember the Y2K scare? Every computer-user on earth worried that their files were in jeopardy as the millennium turned over. In fact, only one-third of the world’s computers were ever even susceptible to Y2K errors—and in those, hardly any problems materialized. Or avian flu. In late 2005, it sped around the world that out of 140 or so human cases of avian flu reported in Southeast Asia, more than half had resulted in death. Reporters somberly concluded that the mortality rate for avian flu is more than 50 percent.


pages: 457 words: 128,838

The Age of Cryptocurrency: How Bitcoin and Digital Money Are Challenging the Global Economic Order by Paul Vigna, Michael J. Casey

Airbnb, altcoin, bank run, banking crisis, bitcoin, blockchain, Bretton Woods, buy and hold, California gold rush, capital controls, carbon footprint, clean water, collaborative economy, collapse of Lehman Brothers, Columbine, Credit Default Swap, cryptocurrency, David Graeber, disintermediation, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, fiat currency, financial innovation, Firefox, Flash crash, Fractional reserve banking, hacker house, Hernando de Soto, high net worth, informal economy, intangible asset, Internet of things, inventory management, Joi Ito, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, Kuwabatake Sanjuro: assassination market, litecoin, Long Term Capital Management, Lyft, M-Pesa, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, McMansion, means of production, Menlo Park, mobile money, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, new economy, new new economy, Nixon shock, offshore financial centre, payday loans, Pearl River Delta, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, pets.com, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, price stability, profit motive, QR code, RAND corporation, regulatory arbitrage, rent-seeking, reserve currency, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, seigniorage, shareholder value, sharing economy, short selling, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart contracts, special drawing rights, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, Ted Nelson, The Great Moderation, the market place, the payments system, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, tulip mania, Turing complete, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, underbanked, WikiLeaks, Y Combinator, Y2K, zero-sum game, Zimmermann PGP

The dot-com bubble of the late 1990s, in which the exuberance behind higher stock prices reflected an abiding belief that the first Web site retailers in every sector would win just by carving out a niche and marketing to it, makes the case. Neighborhood pet stores weren’t killed by Pets.com, no more than wedding planners were made redundant by OurBeginning.com, whose representatives joined Pets.com’s talking sock puppet among a host of overhyped Super Bowl XXXIV ads in 2000, but whose domain name has since passed to a Seattle day-care center. Remember also the Y2K threat, which reached its anticlimax weeks before that Super Bowl. We’ll never know whether it amounted to nothing because computer consulting firms successfully convinced everyone to upgrade their mainframes or whether they just brilliantly hyped a nonevent. Well before then history was littered with other failed tech ideas: the Apple Newton, digital audiotapes, and the Betamax video format, to name a few that our generation might remember.

Gox and trust industries Turing Festival 20Mission Twitter Uber U-Haul Ulbricht, Ross Ultimate Frisbee unbanked people Unenumerated Unfair Trade, The (Casey) UnionPay Union Square Partners United Kingdom Utah utilities value: of bitcoins of coins of cryptocurrencies of dollar of gold intrinsic of money van der Laan, Wladimir Vaurum venture capitalists (VCs) Ver, Roger Verisign Verizon Vessenes, Peter VHS Virgin Group VirtEx Visa Vodafone Volabit Volcker, Paul Voltaire Voorhees, Erik voting Wall Street Wall Street Journal Walmart Washington State wealth bitcoin and Wealth of Nations, The (Smith) Web Designs WeChat Wedbush Securities Weill, Sanford Wei Dai Weimar Republic welfare state Wells Fargo Western Union Whelan, Jason Whelan, John WikiLeaks Wikipedia Willard, Rik William III, King Williams, Mark T. Wilson, Cody Wilson, Fred Winklevoss, Cameron and Tyler Wise, Josh Women’s Annex Wood, Gavin work World Bank Wright, Frank Lloyd Wuille, Pieter Xapo XIPH Foundation Xpert Financial XRP Y2K threat Yahoo Yang, Jerry Yap Y Combinator Yellen, Janet Yermack, David YouTube YTCracker Yunus, Muhammad ZeroBlock Zhang, Ng Zimbabwe Zimmerman, Phil Zobro, Jonathan Zoosk Zuckerberg, Mark Zug Also by Michael J. Casey The Unfair Trade Che’s Afterlife ABOUT THE AUTHORS Paul Vigna is a markets reporter for The Wall Street Journal, covering equities and the economy.


pages: 403 words: 132,736

In Spite of the Gods: The Rise of Modern India by Edward Luce

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Bretton Woods, call centre, centre right, clean water, colonial rule, crony capitalism, cuban missile crisis, demographic dividend, energy security, financial independence, friendly fire, Gini coefficient, Haight Ashbury, informal economy, job-hopping, Kickstarter, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Wolf, megacity, new economy, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, purchasing power parity, Silicon Valley, trade liberalization, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, urban planning, women in the workforce, working-age population, Y2K

India’s software sector clocked up a milestone in 2003 when it earned more dollars that year than India spent to import oil—the erratic energy bill that has haunted the country’s economy for decades. Rising prices from the deteriorating situation in Iraq following the U.S.-led invasion sent India’s oil bill shooting upward again in 2004 and 2005. But it had minimal impact on India’s balance of payments situation. Having kept a straight face in the late 1990s while it profited from the West’s paranoia about the Y2K computer bug, which provided the liftoff for India’s software companies, India’s IT and IT-enabled sector also reached a visibility that was changing the face of the country’s urban economy. The employment of hundreds of thousands of young engineers, scientists, and economics and English graduates, on pay scales that often exceeded those of their parents nearing retirement age, created a new generation of consumers with little time for India’s traditional pace of life.

THOMPSON, the late British historian The employee identification tag hanging around James Paul’s neck says 4844. To James’s colleagues, the number identifies the twenty-nine-year-old as among the lucky first few thousand people to get a job at Infosys, which is India’s best-known software company. James was hired in 1998, when Infosys was starting to win large contracts to sweep Western computer systems for the much-feared millennium Y2K bug. People at Infosys worried the boom might end in the hangover after millennium eve. Instead it accelerated. India’s software sector barely skipped a beat when the United States dot-com bubble burst in 2001. By 2006 Infosys had expanded more than tenfold from when James had been hired as part of a workforce of more than 50,000 employees. Likewise James, who heads a unit of 1,500 people at the company’s headquarters in Bangalore, and spends at least half his time visiting clients in places like Houston, Paris, and Salt Lake City, has seen his salary grow more than ten times to $50,000 a year—a princely sum given India’s low cost of living.


pages: 434 words: 135,226

The Music of the Primes by Marcus Du Sautoy

Ada Lovelace, Andrew Wiles, Arthur Eddington, Augustin-Louis Cauchy, computer age, Dava Sobel, Dmitri Mendeleev, Eratosthenes, Erdős number, Georg Cantor, German hyperinflation, global village, Henri Poincaré, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, lateral thinking, music of the spheres, New Journalism, P = NP, Paul Erdős, Richard Feynman, Rubik’s Cube, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Simon Singh, Solar eclipse in 1919, Stephen Hawking, Turing machine, William of Occam, Wolfskehl Prize, Y2K

As Bruce Schneier comments in his book Applied Cryptography, ‘It’s a whole lot easier to find flaws in people than it is to find them in crypto-systems.’ However, such security breaches, though serious for the company involved, pose no threat to the whole fabric of Internet business. This is what gives a film like Sneakers an edge. Although the probability of a breakthrough in cracking numbers is small, the risk is still there and the result would be globally devastating. It could become the Y2K of e-business, bringing the whole house of emails crumbling to the ground. We think that cracking numbers is inherently difficult, but we can’t prove it. It would be a weight off a lot of executives’ minds if we could assure them that it is impossible to find a fast program that can factorise numbers. Obviously it is difficult to prove that such a thing does not exist. Cracking numbers is a complex task not because the mathematics is particularly difficult, but because there is such a huge haystack from which to pluck the two needles.

In fairness, the mathematics behind RSA cryptography is not that deep. Most mathematicians would not compare the challenge of cracking numbers to the prospect of uncovering some longstanding mystery such as the Riemann Hypothesis. Although solutions of the Riemann Hypothesis and the P versus NP problem might both have implications for RSA, it was another of the Millennium Problems that almost caused the Y2K of e-business. Early in 1999 rumours were rapidly circulating that something called the Birch—Swinnerton-Dyer Conjecture, a problem about things called elliptic curves, might expose the Achilles’ heel of Internet security. In January 1999, The Times ran a front-page article under the headline TEENAGER CRACKS EMAIL CODE. This achievement had earned the Irish teenager Sarah Flannery first prize in a science competition, but it promised far more lucrative riches.


pages: 509 words: 132,327

Rise of the Machines: A Cybernetic History by Thomas Rid

1960s counterculture, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Alistair Cooke, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, business intelligence, Charles Lindbergh, Claude Shannon: information theory, conceptual framework, connected car, domain-specific language, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, dumpster diving, Extropian, full employment, game design, global village, Haight Ashbury, Howard Rheingold, Jaron Lanier, job automation, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kubernetes, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, RAND corporation, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telepresence, The Hackers Conference, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, Y2K, Yom Kippur War, Zimmermann PGP

The company had five sturdy gray relay racks with blue plugs at the top, with space for forty-five servers. But it managed to put in and rent out only a dozen machines. The company never successfully raised sufficient seed money, not even in the bullish market of the New Economy before the crash. And the budget quickly ran thin. One of HavenCo’s main investors, Avi Friedman, was worried about the Y2K problem, so he withdrew about $2 million in cash, in $100 bills, and kept the cash at home. He doled out $1,500 at a time, to make minimum payments. Lackey started using his own credit cards, spending ever more money that he didn’t have. Businesses did not flock to the data haven as expected. By the summer of 2000, two of the three founders had jumped ship and left the start-up. A year later, Lackey managed to keep the company afloat with about ten customers, primarily casinos.

This was an extreme statement and an extraordinary claim. One politically minded White House staffer reviewing the document spotted it. He scribbled in the margin, “Do we really want to say that a single person can potentially paralyze a government?” The statement carried two risks. One was that there was no evidence, let alone a precedent, that one individual alone could take down the government by cyber attack. Y2K had just passed without incident, as Bill Clinton would point out in this very speech. But even if it could not be done, having the president of the United States announce such a monumental vulnerability would certainly inspire potential attackers to try. “I’ll defer to Dick et al on this,” the staffer added.113 Richard Clarke, then in charge of infrastructure protection and counterterrorism in the National Security Council, left the statement in the speech.


pages: 162 words: 50,108

The Little Book of Hedge Funds by Anthony Scaramucci

Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, Bernie Madoff, business process, carried interest, corporate raider, Credit Default Swap, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, fear of failure, fixed income, follow your passion, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, index fund, John Meriwether, Long Term Capital Management, mail merge, margin call, mass immigration, merger arbitrage, money market fund, Myron Scholes, NetJets, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Sharpe ratio, short selling, Silicon Valley, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, the new new thing, too big to fail, transaction costs, Vanguard fund, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

As the ball was about to drop in Times Square, cynics prophesized that the new millennium would usher in a technological crisis so catastrophic that it would rival Noah’s devastating flood. So serious was this supposed crisis that Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan spent New Year’s Eve in a government crisis center. Yet, Dick Clark rang in 2000 without the smallest glitch. However, the true Y2K crisis affected the long/short equity managers, many of whom were long low P/E stocks and short high P/E Internet stocks. Robertson was one of those short selling managers. Fed up with the market’s irrationality, he closed his fund in late March 2000. In a letter to investors that year, the then-67-year-old blamed the fund’s shortfall on the Internet bubble. “As you have heard me say on many occasions, the key to Tiger’s success over the years has been a steady commitment to buying the best stocks and shorting the worst,” he wrote.


End the Fed by Ron Paul

affirmative action, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Bretton Woods, business cycle, crony capitalism, currency manipulation / currency intervention, fiat currency, Fractional reserve banking, hiring and firing, housing crisis, illegal immigration, invisible hand, Khyber Pass, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, means of production, moral hazard, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, reserve currency, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, too big to fail, tulip mania, Y2K

Throughout the 1990s in the United States, the market was arguing for liquidation of debt and elimination of gross malinvestment. But our recessions, the Asian crisis, as well as the Russian crisis were papered over with more inflation. Even the failure of Long-Term Capital Management in 1999 was barely a blip on the economic radar screen. By the year 2000, the imbalances were more than could be contained. The massive injection of credit for Y2K softened the blow of the 2000 recession, but it was clear by then that the “Big One” was at our doorstep. And I suspect that Greenspan knew it. He energetically contributed to the already very large housing bubble by driving down and holding interest rates very low for several more years. He bought time for himself and the institution he represented. The collapse of the stock market in 2000, especially the bursting of the NASDAQ bubble, was the beginning of the current crisis, although many want to date the onset in 2007 when the mortgage crisis became obvious.


Practical OCaml by Joshua B. Smith

cellular automata, Debian, domain-specific language, general-purpose programming language, Grace Hopper, hiring and firing, John Conway, Paul Graham, slashdot, SpamAssassin, text mining, Turing complete, type inference, web application, Y2K

."}]}; {dates = new job_date( {month=5;year=1998}, {month=5;year=2000}); company={corp_name="Another Big Corp."; corp_location = "Chicago, IL, USA"}; title = "Unix Systems Administrator"; job_type=FullTime; description = "Made sure the server room was free from dust."; 441 620Xch30final.qxd 442 9/22/06 12:23 AM Page 442 CHAPTER 30 ■ CONCLUSION b_points = [ {acc_level=1; acc_descr = "Used Ping a great deal."}; {acc_level=1; acc_descr = "Install Nethack on SunOS 4.13 systems and verified they were Y2K compliant."}]}] let acc_filter_level = 1 let degrees = [{ad_dates=new job_date({month=2;year=2003}, {month=8;year=2005}); degree="MBA"; institution = {corp_name="Lake Forest Graduate School of Management"; corp_location = "Chicago, IL, USA" }}; {ad_dates=new job_date({month=8;year=1992}, {month=6;year=1996}); degree="BA (English)"; institution = {corp_name = "Denison University"; corp_location = "Granville, OH, USA" }}] let publications = [{pub_date={month=8;year=2006}; pub_title="Practical Ocaml"; publisher={corp_name = "Apress, Inc

. * Did some cool stuff for local Fortune 5 company * Created training materials 2000 - 2005 |Some Firm, LLC | Caml Wrangler Did all kinds of stuff , but didn't worry about linebreaks. * Introduced people to Ocaml. * Wrote very little software, and a whole lot of documentation. * Frequently got coffee for people. 1998 - 2000 |Another Big Corp. | Unix Systems Administrator Made sure the server room was free from dust. * Used Ping a great deal. * Install Nethack on SunOS 4.13 systems and verified they were Y2K compliant. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------Academic History -------------------------------------------------------------------------------2003 - 2005 MBA Lake Forest Graduate School of Management 1992 - 1996 BA (English) Denison University -------------------------------------------------------------------------------Publications -------------------------------------------------------------------------------10/2006 [Practical Ocaml] Apress, Inc.


pages: 492 words: 153,565

Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the World's First Digital Weapon by Kim Zetter

Ayatollah Khomeini, Brian Krebs, crowdsourcing, data acquisition, Doomsday Clock, drone strike, Edward Snowden, facts on the ground, Firefox, friendly fire, Google Earth, information retrieval, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, Loma Prieta earthquake, Maui Hawaii, MITM: man-in-the-middle, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, smart grid, smart meter, South China Sea, Stuxnet, undersea cable, uranium enrichment, Vladimir Vetrov: Farewell Dossier, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero day

When the Loma Prieta earthquake struck the area in 1989, chimneys toppled, streetlights and phones died for several days, and shockwaves in the swimming pool at nearby DeAnza College ejected polo players from the water and onto the pavement like beached seals. Weiss first became aware of the security problems with control systems in 1999. A nuclear engineer by training, he was working for the Electric Power Research Institute when the Y2K issue arose. Armageddon warnings in the press predicted dystopian meltdowns when computer clocks struck midnight on New Year’s Eve because of a programming error that failed to anticipate the millennial rollover to triple zeroes on January 1, 2000. Weiss began to wonder: if such a minor thing as a change of date could threaten to bring control systems to a halt, what would more serious issues do? More important, if Y2K could accidentally cause huge problems, what might an intentional attack from hackers do? Dozens of security conferences held around the world each year focused on general computer security, but none of them addressed control systems.


pages: 573 words: 157,767

From Bacteria to Bach and Back: The Evolution of Minds by Daniel C. Dennett

Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Andrew Wiles, Bayesian statistics, bioinformatics, bitcoin, Build a better mousetrap, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, computer vision, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, Douglas Hofstadter, Elon Musk, epigenetics, experimental subject, Fermat's Last Theorem, Gödel, Escher, Bach, information asymmetry, information retrieval, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, iterative process, John von Neumann, Menlo Park, Murray Gell-Mann, Necker cube, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, phenotype, Richard Feynman, Rodney Brooks, self-driving car, social intelligence, sorting algorithm, speech recognition, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, strong AI, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, theory of mind, Thomas Bayes, trickle-down economics, Turing machine, Turing test, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Y2K

Computer programmers have an excellent jargon term, the thinko. A thinko is like a typo—a typographical error—but at a higher, semantic level—misthinking not miswriting. Typing “PRITN” instead of “PRINT” is a typo; forgetting to put the brackets or asterisks (or whatever the programming language calls for) around a comment is a thinko, and so is defining a three-place function where you need a four-place function. The notorious Y2K bug, which didn’t leave room in data structures for dates that didn’t begin with “19,” was no typo; it was a thinko. A thinko is a clear mistake in any endeavor where the assumed goals of the enterprise require certain identifiable “best practices.” “Bugs” in computer programs may be attributable to typos in the source code, but more often they are thinkos. (Most typos are spotted by the compiler program and sent back to the programmer for correction before the construction of executable code.)

“how come” question, 38–39, 48 Wiener, Norbert, 136, 157 Wilde, Oscar, 316, 317–18 Wiles, Andrew, 376–77 Wilson, David Sloan, 212, 216–17 Wilson, Deirdre, 289, 293 Wilson, Robert Anton, 113 Wimsatt, William, 324 witticisms, R&D in, 317–18 women: biological differences between men and, 328–29 cultural repression of, 329 genius in, 23–24, 328–29 as intelligent designers, 328–29 words: as affordances, 198, 204 as autonomous, 188, 189 chimpanzees and, 203–4 as continuances, 187 Darwinian Space for, 146, 208 DNA compared to, 202–3 domestication of, 198, 294, 296 etymologies of, 180, 182 evolution of, 212–13, 296 genes compared to, 224–25 horizontal transfer of, 182 human dependence on, 178–79 as informational structures, 188–89 as key element of cultural evolution, 177, 179, 208 Lamarckian view of, 245–46 manifest images and, 202, 203, 205, 273, 287 meaning-concept-thing constructs and, 272–74 as memes, 193, 194, 205–6, 207, 224–26, 263, 412 private vs. public tokens for, 185–86, 189–90 as pronounceable memes, 176, 191, 193, 194, 205–6, 207, 224–25, 269–70 salience of, 207 words selfishness of, 189 as spoken vs. silent tokens, 183–86 stages of, 187 as striving to reproduce, 5, 412 as synanthropic, 197–98, 199 as thinking tools, 292, 389 transmission errors and, 234–35 type/token distinction of, 182–83, 186–87, 189, 245–46 viruses compared to, 189, 190, 245 words, evolution of, 176–82, 187–90 Chomskyan disparagement of, 187, 188 horizonatal transfer of, 180–81 natural selection in, 197 reproduction in, 189–204, 412 see also language, evolution of word stem completion paradigm, 396–97 world knowledge, 73 World War II, 70–72 Wright, Robert, 223, 224 writing: advantages over speech of, 236 variations in size and shape in, 201 Y2K bug, 229 Ziock, Hans, 119n, 125n, 133 ABOUT THE AUTHOR Daniel C. Dennett is University Professor and Co-director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University. For over fifty years he has conducted research on human consciousness, contributing to advances in psychology, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, artificial intelligence, and robotics, as well as writing on such traditional philosophical topics as free will, ethics, epistemology, and metaphysics.


pages: 519 words: 142,646

Track Changes by Matthew G. Kirschenbaum

active measures, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, Buckminster Fuller, commoditize, computer age, corporate governance, David Brooks, dematerialisation, Donald Knuth, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, East Village, en.wikipedia.org, feminist movement, forensic accounting, future of work, Google Earth, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Haight Ashbury, HyperCard, Jason Scott: textfiles.com, Joan Didion, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, low earth orbit, mail merge, Marshall McLuhan, Mother of all demos, New Journalism, Norman Mailer, pattern recognition, pink-collar, popular electronics, RAND corporation, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, social web, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, text mining, thinkpad, Turing complete, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K, Year of Magical Thinking

Perhaps Hollywood had simply grown more sophisticated in its portrayal of computers on the big screen in the intervening decade and a half; a writer using a word processor in a mainstream movie was now expected to behave believably. But it is also possible to view the contrast between the final scenes in the two films as a reflection of our changing relationship to digital content and digital culture. Whereas in the mid-1980s the ghostly green text was vulnerable to disappearing in a flash, by the year 2000—Y2K notwithstanding—we had grown accustomed to thinking of digital media as possessed of its own idiosyncratic forms of resilience, not an inscrutable or ephemeral black box but just another technology, subject to our manipulation and control. Grady Tripp had found a life worth living, and he entrusted it to his PowerBook without a second thought. Today, another fifteen years further on, we live in a world where ubiquitous computing begets ubiquitous storage.

Ignacio Infante, After Translation: The Transfer and Circulation of Modern Poetics across the Atlantic (New York: Fordham University Press, 2013), 167–168. Infante also explicitly identifies Brathwaite’s writing as “electronic poetry” (despite the fact that readers always encounter it printed on paper); similarly, Cynthia James aligns Brathwaite’s work with hypertext, a digital form usually associated with white Western authors. See James, “Caliban in Y2K? Hypertext and New Pathways,” in For the Geography of a Soul: Emerging Perspectives on Kamau Brathwaite, ed. Timothy J. Reiss (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2001), 351–361. 63. Brathwaite also sometimes identifies his computer as Stark, which doubles as the name of Caliban’s sister in his writings. See Rhonda Cobham, “K / Ka / Kam / Kama / Kamau: Brathwaite’s Project of Self-Naming,” in Reiss, For the Geography of a Soul, 306–307. 64.


Trend Commandments: Trading for Exceptional Returns by Michael W. Covel

Albert Einstein, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, business cycle, buy and hold, commodity trading advisor, correlation coefficient, delayed gratification, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, family office, full employment, Lao Tzu, Long Term Capital Management, market bubble, market microstructure, Mikhail Gorbachev, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, Nick Leeson, oil shock, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, random walk, Sharpe ratio, systematic trading, the scientific method, transaction costs, tulip mania, upwardly mobile, Y2K, zero-sum game

That said, some will spend a lifetime trying to avoid any loss even though its impossible…as Chart 8 shows. 70 Tre n d C o m m a n d m e n t s Chart 8: Trend Following Trader Sunrise Capital Compared to Largest Quarterly S&P Drawdowns Time Period Event S&P 500 Index Performance Sunrise Performance 1987 2002 2001 1990 2002 2001 1998 2008 2008 2000 1999 1994 2007 1990 2003 Black Monday WorldCom Scandal 9-11 Iraq Invades Kuwait Dot.Com Bubble Tech Bear Market Russian Default/LTCM Credit Crisis Credit Crisis/Bailout Dot.Com Bubble Burst Y2K Anxiety Fed Rate Hikes Credit Crisis Recession/Oil Spike Second Gulf War –23.23% –17.63% –14.99% –14.52% –13.73% –12.11% –10.30% –9.92% –8.88% –8.09% –6.56% –4.43% –3.82% –3.81% –3.60% 55.37% 8.90% 8.29% 41.21% 18.19% 11.22% 12.02% 15.12% –3.79% 16.02% –0.98% –4.55% 13.46% 13.54% 7.48% Q4 Q3 Q3 Q3 Q2 Q1 Q3 Q1 Q3 Q4 Q3 Q1 Q4 Q1 Q1 This page intentionally left blank Process versus outcome: Do you want to be right or rich?


Player One by Douglas Coupland

Albert Einstein, call centre, double helix, Marshall McLuhan, neurotypical, oil shock, peak oil, post-oil, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), uranium enrichment, Y2K

She’s most likely addicted to video games and online shopping, bankrupting her parents in an orgy of oyster merino and lichen alpaca. Fancy a bit of chit-chat? Doubtful. She’d most likely text him, even if they were riding together in a crashing car — and she’d be fluent in seventeen software programs and fully versed in the ability to conceal hourly visits to gruesome military photo streams. She probably wouldn’t remember 9/11 or the Y2K virus, and she’ll never bother to learn a new language because a machine will translate the world for her in 0.034 seconds. But most of all, this cool Hitchcock blonde is a living, breathing, luscious, and terrifying terminal punctuation mark on Luke’s existence, a punctuation mark along the lines of This is the New Normal, Luke, and guess what — it’s left you in the weeds, and you, pastor, reverend, good sir, have outlived your cultural purpose and you, father, forgive me, are a chunk of cultural scrap metal, not even recyclable at that.


pages: 209 words: 57,137

Understanding Exposure, Fourth Edition: How to Shoot Great Photographs With Any Camera by Bryan Peterson

Frank Gehry, Y2K

It seems that a couple of those “big” photography forum Web sites have unleashed some really old news that when a lens is set to the smaller apertures, such as f/16 and f/22, lens diffraction is more noticeable (in layman’s terms, lens diffraction means a loss of contrast and sharpness). I want to set the record straight about lens diffraction and share what thousands of commercial freelance photographers all over the world know: shooting at f/22 can be a great idea, and any worries about loss of sharpness and contrast are just as overblown as the Y2K fears were! In over 35 years of shooting commercially, I can’t remember a time when a client said, “Bryan, whatever you do, don’t shoot at f/22.” Nor can I remember a single instance when either Getty or Corbis (the two largest stock photo agencies in the world) called me to say, “Bryan, don’t send us any of your pictures for our stock files if they were shot at f/22.” The reason I can’t remember is that it never happened and it never will.


pages: 181 words: 62,775

Half Empty by David Rakoff

airport security, Buckminster Fuller, dark matter, double helix, global pandemic, Google Earth, phenotype, RFID, twin studies, urban planning, urban renewal, wage slave, Wall-E, Y2K

Although it was briefly marvelous and strange to see a car parked outside an office, the wide hallway used like a street, many stories above the city. The millennium had turned. The planes had not fallen from the sky, the trains had not careened off the tracks. Neither had the heart monitors, prenatal incubators, nor the iron lungs reset themselves to some suicidal zero hour to self-destruct in a lethal kablooey of Y2K shrapnel, as feared. And most important, the ATMs continued to dispense money, and what money it was. I was off to see some of it. Like Edith Wharton’s Gilded Age Buccaneers, when titled but cash-poor Europeans joined in wedlock with wealthy American girls in the market for pedigree, there were mutually abusive marriages popping up all over the city between un-moneyed creatives with ethereal Web-based schemes and the financiers who, desperate to get in on the action, bankrolled them.


pages: 204 words: 60,319

Finding Zero: A Mathematician's Odyssey to Uncover the Origins of Numbers by Amir D. Aczel

colonial rule, double entry bookkeeping, Georg Cantor, offshore financial centre, Y2K

The Mayan calendars, and the predominantly vigesimal Mayan number system with zero, are some of the most intriguing discoveries in the history of science. In 2012 there was worldwide panic in some circles of society fearing the end of the world because one of the Mayan calendars reset itself to zero. Of course, nothing happened; our planet continued to revolve around the sun, and this fear turned out to be as unfounded as the similar Y2K worry of a dozen years earlier. But the Mayan system was isolated from the rest of the world, and it used glyphs—written or carved symbolic signs—that were not suitable for economy of notation. Their signs grew in number as the numbers they represented got larger, in a manner similar to that of the Roman system. The zero was not a perfect positional element as in our numbers, and the base changed, depending on need, from 20 to 18.


pages: 244 words: 66,977

Subscribed: Why the Subscription Model Will Be Your Company's Future - and What to Do About It by Tien Tzuo, Gabe Weisert

3D printing, Airbnb, airport security, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, blockchain, Build a better mousetrap, business cycle, business intelligence, business process, call centre, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, connected car, death of newspapers, digital twin, double entry bookkeeping, Elon Musk, factory automation, fiat currency, Internet of things, inventory management, iterative process, Jeff Bezos, Kevin Kelly, Lean Startup, Lyft, manufacturing employment, minimum viable product, natural language processing, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, nuclear winter, pets.com, profit maximization, race to the bottom, ride hailing / ride sharing, Sand Hill Road, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, smart meter, social graph, software as a service, spice trade, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, subscription business, Tim Cook: Apple, transport as a service, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Y2K, Zipcar

I had the good fortune to join Salesforce as employee #11, and helped turn it into a billion-dollar company over the next ten years. All of us early folks at Salesforce came out of the traditional, on-premise software industry. We were all pretty fed up with it. We thought that companies like Oracle, Siebel, and others were creating a needlessly complicated product that was sold by a mercenary sales force and promoted by a parasitic systems integration industry. The Y2K scare was in full force. Sales reps outnumbered developers ten to one. Half the installations would never see the light of day, and even those that were deemed a “success” were hated by the end users. The industry had completely lost sight of its customers: who they were, what they did on a daily basis, what they liked about their work systems, and what made them angry. It was time for a change. Working out of Marc Benioff’s rented one-bedroom apartment, we knew we wanted to build a new kind of user experience, one that would feel as seamless and intuitive as buying a book on Amazon.


pages: 271 words: 62,538

The Best Interface Is No Interface: The Simple Path to Brilliant Technology (Voices That Matter) by Golden Krishna

Airbnb, computer vision, crossover SUV, en.wikipedia.org, fear of failure, impulse control, Inbox Zero, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, Jony Ive, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, new economy, Oculus Rift, pattern recognition, QR code, RFID, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, technoutopianism, Tim Cook: Apple, Y Combinator, Y2K

Use candles, because if you rely on the government’s bureaucratically created electrical grid to automatically deploy to you just the right amount of electricity, well, I don’t know what to tell you my friend, you’re living in a dreamland. What would you do if it ran out? If it stopped working? If it failed? Then what would you do? You’d be a running-water-loving, cold-food-eating, electricity-hogging idiot! Those dated thoughts may sound insane to you now, but in more modern times we’ve had our fears. Y2K: Oh no, two digits! Online banking: My money in cyberspace!? Leaping into the unknown is scary. And relying on a new means of getting things done means the fear of failure will be prevalent. Examining that fear of failure—a consideration of edge cases—can be limiting and often unproductive during early production ideation, but it is essential to consider when putting together the final stages of anything.


pages: 219 words: 67,173

Grand Central: How a Train Station Transformed America by Sam Roberts

accounting loophole / creative accounting, City Beautiful movement, clean water, collective bargaining, Donald Trump, Jane Jacobs, Joan Didion, Marshall McLuhan, New Urbanism, the High Line, transcontinental railway, transit-oriented development, urban planning, urban renewal, Y2K

For the first time, a traveler going cross-country could rely on the minute hand of his watch telling the correct time, with only the hour changing as he passed from one time zone into another. No longer would clocks be chiming continuously for three and a quarter hours. Instead, they would ring in each hour simultaneously, even if the hour would be different in each time zone. In New York, they would strike noon approximately 3 minutes, 58 seconds, and 38 one-hundredths of a second earlier than they had the day before. All over the country, Americans greeted the change with Y2K trepidation and with not a little resentment that the railroads were once again impinging on their daily routines. A local prophet in Charleston, South Carolina, warned that toying with time would provoke divine displeasure (sure enough, a major earthquake struck there three years later). Pittsburgh, Cleveland, and Detroit refused to comply, and Cincinnati delayed adoption of standard time for seven years.


pages: 602 words: 177,874

Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist's Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations by Thomas L. Friedman

3D printing, additive manufacturing, affirmative action, Airbnb, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, blockchain, Bob Noyce, business cycle, business process, call centre, centre right, Chris Wanstrath, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, demand response, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Erik Brynjolfsson, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Ferguson, Missouri, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Flash crash, game design, gig economy, global pandemic, global supply chain, illegal immigration, immigration reform, income inequality, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, invention of the steam engine, inventory management, Irwin Jacobs: Qualcomm, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, land tenure, linear programming, Live Aid, low skilled workers, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, mutually assured destruction, Nelson Mandela, pattern recognition, planetary scale, pull request, Ralph Waldo Emerson, ransomware, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, South China Sea, Steve Jobs, supercomputer in your pocket, TaskRabbit, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Thomas L Friedman, transaction costs, Transnistria, uber lyft, undersea cable, urban decay, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce, Y2K, Yogi Berra, zero-sum game

The early stages of modern digital globalization tended to be all about “outsourcing,” another name for American and European companies leveraging the fact that connectivity was becoming fast, free, easy for you, and ubiquitous, so they could hire enormous numbers of relatively cheap engineers anywhere in the world to solve American problems. When this first became possible at scale in the late 1990s, the big problem most people wanted solving was Y2K—the fear that many computers would stop working because of a bug that would kick in on their internal clocks on January 1, 2000. Millions of computer systems needed to be remediated, and India had hundreds of thousands of low-wage engineers to do it. Presto, problem solved. What happened, though, with the emergence of the supernova, when complexity became fast, free, easy for you, and invisible, and globalization meant that everyone anywhere with an Internet connection could access the digital flows, was something very exciting: Indian, Mexican, Pakistani, Indonesian, and Ukrainian engineers, and many others, began tapping in to solve their problems.

David Time Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) Tipirneni, Ashok Tocqueville, Alexis de topsoil “topsoil of trust” Torvalds, Linus Toynbee, Arnold Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) translation software Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) transparency, in workplace Transparent (TV series) Trestman, Marc tribalism Tropic of Chaos (Parenti) Truman, Harry Trump, Donald trust: community and; financial flows and; as human quality; politics and; sharing economy and; as social capital; social technologies and Trust (Fukuyama) truth, live video and Tunisia TurboTax Turki, Karim Turner, Adair 24/7 Customer Twenty-Fourth Marine Expeditionary Unit Twin Cities Business Twin Cities Metropolitan Council Twitter 2G wireless networks typewriters Uber; surge pricing algorithms of Udacity Uganda, population growth in Ukraine; 2014 uprising in unemployment, political instability and Unesco United Bearing United Nations; Human Development Report Office of; Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change of; Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs of; Population Division of; Refugee Agency (UNHCR) of United Press International (UPI) United States: China’s relations with; global dependence on; illegal immigration into; immigrant entrepreneurs in; Madagascar and; Middle East policy of; population growth in; post–Cold War hegemony of; Russia’s relations with UPS USA Today value sets: of author; community and; cultural identity and; in opinion writing; sustainable vs. situational; see also ethics, innovation in van Agtmael, Antoine Vedantam, Shankar Venezuela Venmo Ventura, Jesse Veritas Genetics Verizon version control systems Vestberg, Hans video, live, empathy and video games Vietnam Vietnam War Visa Vital Signs of the Planet (NASA report) voice prints Volkswagen Beetle Vox.com wage insurance Wakefield Research Walensky, Norm Walker, Robert Wall Street Journal Walmart, online operations of Wanamaker, John Wanstrath, Chris Warburg, Bettina Waryan, Don Washington Post Waters, Colin water scarcity Watson, Thomas Watson (computer) Watson (software): medical applications of weak signals, detection of weak states: in age of accelerations; biodiversity loss in; breakers and; building stability in; civil wars in; climate change and; in Cold War era; contrived borders of; dwindling foreign aid to; global flows and; infrastructure in; Internet and; population growth in; risk to interdependent world of We Are All Khaled Said (Facebook page) Webster University WeChat Weekend Edition (radio show) Weiner, Jeff Weisman, Alan Welby, Justin Wells, Lin Welsh, Tim West Africa; Ebola outbreak in; migration from WhatIs.com WhatsApp “When and Why Nationalism Beats Globalism” (Haidt) White House, 2015 drone crash at White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) Whitman, Meg “Why ‘Keep Your Paddle in the Water’ Is Bad Advice for Beginners” (Levesque) “Why What You Learned in Preschool Is Crucial at Work” (Miller) Wieseltier, Leon Wikipedia Williams, Jake Wilson, Dan wind energy Windows Wired wireless networks wisdom, patience and Wolf, Frank women: education of; empowerment of WomenNewsNetwork.net workforce, innovation in; accelerated pace of; blending of technical and interpersonal skills in; computerization and; connectivity and; disruption in; education and; empowerment in; high-wage, middle-skilled jobs in; intelligent assistance in, see intelligent assistance; intelligent assistants and; lifelong learning and; mentors in; middle class and; new social contracts in; on-demand jobs in; retraining in; self-motivation and; self-reinvention and; skill sets and, see skill sets; technological change and; transparency and; see also job seekers World Bank World Cup (2014) World Is Flat, The (Friedman) World of Disorder World of Order World Parks Congress, Sydney “World Population Prospects: The 2015 Revision” (U.N.) World Trade Center World Trade Organization worldview; see also Machine, the World War I World War II World Wide Web; search engines and World Wildlife Fund “wound collectors” Wujec, Tom X (Google research lab) Xerox PARC research center Y2K Yahoo Yassin, Israa Yaun, David Years of Living Dangerously (TV show) Yelp Yemen Yeni Medya (New Media Inc.) Yeo, George Yildiz, Sadik YouTube; advertising/ISIS video controversy and Zambrano, Patricio Zedillo, Ernesto Zelle, Charlie Zika virus ALSO BY THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN From Beirut to Jerusalem (1989) The Lexus and the Olive Tree (1999) Longitudes and Attitudes (2002) The World Is Flat (2005) Hot, Flat, and Crowded (2008) That Used to Be Us (with Michael Mandelbaum, 2011) A Note About the Author Thomas L.


pages: 222 words: 75,778

Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose by Tony Hsieh

call centre, crowdsourcing, hiring and firing, Jeff Bezos, Lao Tzu, pre–internet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Saturday Night Live, science of happiness, Silicon Valley, Tony Hsieh, Y2K

“You could have done anything you wanted, and you chose to create an experience that people will remember forever.” “Yeah, I don’t think other residents living here are going to be too happy with me when they find out why they had to evacuate the building in the middle of the night,” I said. “They’re probably going to remember this night forever as well.” She laughed. “Oh, don’t worry about it. It was an accident. You can blame it on the Y2K bug or something. I can see the headlines now: Fog Machines Gone Awry!” I smiled at her. “Can you believe that this whole place is going to be converted to an office in a few days?” She gazed into my eyes. I could still hear the music in the background, but the rest of the world seemed to disappear. I had no idea who this girl was, but somehow the universe had brought us together for a single moment in time that I would remember forever.


pages: 280 words: 73,420

Crapshoot Investing: How Tech-Savvy Traders and Clueless Regulators Turned the Stock Market Into a Casino by Jim McTague

algorithmic trading, automated trading system, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Bretton Woods, buttonwood tree, buy and hold, computerized trading, corporate raider, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, financial innovation, fixed income, Flash crash, High speed trading, housing crisis, index arbitrage, locking in a profit, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, market fragmentation, market fundamentalism, Myron Scholes, naked short selling, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Renaissance Technologies, Ronald Reagan, Sergey Aleynikov, short selling, Small Order Execution System, statistical arbitrage, technology bubble, transaction costs, Vanguard fund, Y2K

The firms might be thinly capitalized or controlled by criminals, for all the regulators knew. “Many of these arrangements do not have any pre-trade risk controls since these clients demand the fastest speed. Due to the fully electronic nature of the equity markets today, one keypunch error could wreak havoc. Nothing would be able to stop a market destroying order once the button was pressed,” they wrote. Once again, few people paid attention. It sounded shrill and far-fetched, like the Y2K scare that had predicted a meltdown of computers worldwide on January 1, 2000 because twentieth-century computer programs would not recognize dates after 1999. This apathy about their white paper would begin to evaporate days later as a result of a quasi-comic confluence of events involving the FBI, short-tempered Wall Street bankers, a Bulgarian-born blogger, and a preening U.S. senator. Endnotes 1.


pages: 225 words: 11,355

Financial Market Meltdown: Everything You Need to Know to Understand and Survive the Global Credit Crisis by Kevin Mellyn

asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, bonus culture, Bretton Woods, business cycle, collateralized debt obligation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, cuban missile crisis, disintermediation, diversification, fiat currency, financial deregulation, financial innovation, financial intermediation, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, global reserve currency, Home mortgage interest deduction, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, Kickstarter, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, long peace, margin call, market clearing, mass immigration, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage tax deduction, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, paradox of thrift, pattern recognition, pension reform, pets.com, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, profit maximization, pushing on a string, reserve currency, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, The Great Moderation, the new new thing, the payments system, too big to fail, value at risk, very high income, War on Poverty, Y2K, yield curve

The Fed flooded the banks with money to restore confidence after the 1987 stock market crash, preventing a real turn down in the economy. It engineered a bail-out of Mexico in 1994, and with the International Monetary Fund helped stopped a global market panic after the Asian currency crisis of 1997. It flooded the markets with cheap money after the dot. com bubble bust at the end of 2000 and again after September 11, 2001. The Fed even pumped money into the system to prevent the phony crisis of Y2K, the idea that the world’s computers would go wacky when the calendar rolled over into the New Millennium on January 1, 2000. By and large, all these actions were successful. Nobody could really ask if they were proper or necessary because of the record of success. Over time, the Great Moderation began to take the fear out of the equation for financial market players. That left only greed. The Natural History of Financial Folly BANKERS GONE WILD If there is one constant that runs through the work of Walter Bagehot it is that banking is a simple business that needs to follow simple rules.


Free as in Freedom by Sam Williams

Asperger Syndrome, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, Debian, Douglas Engelbart, East Village, Guido van Rossum, Hacker Ethic, informal economy, Isaac Newton, John Conway, John Markoff, Larry Wall, Marc Andreessen, Maui Hawaii, Murray Gell-Mann, profit motive, Richard Stallman, Silicon Valley, slashdot, software patent, Steven Levy, Ted Nelson, urban renewal, VA Linux, Y2K

Accepting the show's Linus Torvalds Award for Community Service-an award named after Linux creator Linus Torvalds-on behalf of the Free Software Foundation, Stallman wisecracks, "Giving the Linus Torvalds Award to the Free Software Foundation is a bit like giving the Han Solo Award to the Rebel Alliance." This time around, however, the comments fail to make much of a media dent. Midway through the week, Red Hat, Inc., a prominent GNU/ Linux vendor, goes public. The news merely confirms what many reporters such as myself already suspect: "Linux" has become a Wall Street buzzword, much like "e-commerce" and "dot-com" before it. With the 55 stock market approaching the Y2K rollover like a hyperbola approaching its vertical asymptote, all talk of free software or open source as a political phenomenon falls by the wayside. Maybe that's why, when LinuxWorld follows up its first two shows with a third LinuxWorld show in August, 2000, Stallman is conspicuously absent. My second encounter with Stallman and his trademark gaze comes shortly after that third LinuxWorld show.


pages: 202 words: 72,857

The Wealth Dragon Way: The Why, the When and the How to Become Infinitely Wealthy by John Lee

8-hour work day, Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, butterfly effect, buy low sell high, California gold rush, Donald Trump, financial independence, high net worth, intangible asset, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, negative equity, passive income, payday loans, self-driving car, Snapchat, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, stocks for the long run, stocks for the long term, Tony Hsieh, Y2K

I was still pumped up by my MBA, believing it qualified me to earn the big bucks in business. The reality was that it had taught me how to be a good business manager, not how to be a good business owner, and I was about to learn the hard way what a huge difference there can be between the two. As the new millennium kicked off—and everyone got used to the fact that the world's computers had not all gone up in smoke because of the Y2K bug—the dot-com bubble was reaching its peak. Inspired by all the über-successful start-ups, such as Last Minute and Yahoo!, I—like so many others—decided I needed to start a dot-com of my own. I thought it would be the perfect start-up business for me since it wouldn't require a huge amount of investment capital. Of course, I hadn't taken into consideration the fact that there was an IT boom taking place hand-in-hand with the dot-com bubble, which meant that web designers and website administrators were able to charge a fortune for their services.


pages: 258 words: 74,942

Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business by Paul Jarvis

Airbnb, big-box store, Cal Newport, call centre, corporate social responsibility, David Heinemeier Hansson, effective altruism, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, follow your passion, gender pay gap, glass ceiling, Inbox Zero, index fund, job automation, Kickstarter, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, Naomi Klein, passive investing, Paul Graham, pets.com, remote working, Results Only Work Environment, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ruby on Rails, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, software as a service, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, uber lyft, web application, Y Combinator, Y2K

This is especially true when you work for yourself: you’ve got to know the skill you use to get paid or build the products you sell, but you also need to have a thorough understanding of key facets like marketing, bookkeeping, and sales. In business, conditions are, of course, never perfect. In fact, they’re typically less than ideal, with changing markets, differing trends, and consumer demand often flip-flopping. Specialists in the corporate world can thrive during certain surges. For instance, COBOL programmers were in demand in 1999 as Y2K approached—but then that need quickly diminished on January 1, 2000. In contrast, generalist programmers, who can write code in any language, have been in demand since computers started to become mainstream in the 1980s, and they have continued to see demand for their varied skill set. According to Carter Phipps, author of Evolutionaries, generalists will continue to thrive in business as it becomes increasingly valuable to know “a little bit about a lot.”


pages: 270 words: 75,803

Wall Street Meat by Andy Kessler

accounting loophole / creative accounting, Andy Kessler, automated trading system, banking crisis, Bob Noyce, George Gilder, index fund, Jeff Bezos, market bubble, Menlo Park, Pepto Bismol, pets.com, Robert Metcalfe, rolodex, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Small Order Execution System, Steve Jobs, technology bubble, undersea cable, Y2K

Now that’s the Jack that I remember. Jack paid a $15 million fine and is now barred for life from the securities business. My guess is that is a relief to him. As a boxer, he knows how to get up from a knockout punch. · · · There are plenty of smoking guns to blame for the Internet and Telecom and Technology Bubble. None are very satisfying. Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan pumped the money supply to stave off a banking crisis based on Y2K computer problems and the excess money went into the stock market. Or how about excessive stock options led greedy management to fudge earnings numbers to pump up their stock. Yeah, maybe. It was structural problems on Wall Street that created the bubble, though excess money supply and corrupt management certainly contributed lots of the hot air. Maybe Spitzer could fix all this, so I followed his moves with interest.


pages: 237 words: 74,109

Uncanny Valley: A Memoir by Anna Wiener

autonomous vehicles, back-to-the-land, basic income, blockchain, Burning Man, call centre, charter city, cloud computing, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Extropian, future of work, Golden Gate Park, housing crisis, Jane Jacobs, job automation, knowledge worker, Lean Startup, means of production, medical residency, new economy, New Urbanism, passive income, pull request, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, Sand Hill Road, self-driving car, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, social web, South of Market, San Francisco, special economic zone, technoutopianism, telepresence, telepresence robot, union organizing, universal basic income, unpaid internship, urban planning, urban renewal, women in the workforce, Y2K, young professional

I saw college friends, and didn’t try to recruit anyone. I drank coffee with my mother until the coffee ran out or ran cold; visited my grandparents in apartments that hadn’t changed for decades. I tried to clear out the storage space in the basement, unearthing old bomber jackets with hand-sewn patches, undergraduate writing, a jar of peeled potatoes stockpiled fifteen years prior in preparation for Y2K. Banal activities, but they felt so good. I felt myself returning to myself. It was strange to be back, but with tech money. I invited friends to dinner at restaurants I knew about from my boss at the literary agency, opened bar tabs, took cabs home after midnight instead of waiting for the train. Killing time in an over air conditioned wine bar in the West Village one evening, sucking on Castelvetrano olives and feeling fancy, I thought about a conversation I’d once had with Noah, in which he had described joining the tech industry as both a personal defeat and a concession to his hometown’s new identity.


pages: 230 words: 76,655

Choose Yourself! by James Altucher

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, cashless society, cognitive bias, dark matter, Elon Musk, estate planning, Mark Zuckerberg, money market fund, Network effects, new economy, PageRank, passive income, pattern recognition, payday loans, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, Rodney Brooks, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, sharing economy, short selling, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, software as a service, Steve Jobs, superconnector, Uber for X, Vanguard fund, Y2K, Zipcar

When this started to slow down (stock market crash, people going to jail, etc.), thank god the Soviet Union collapsed. Peace dividend! But then recession again in 1993–94. Hmmm… What could we do now? Internet stock market boom. Suddenly, everything would cost nothing (since it’s all digital!) and there were no taxes on Internet sales. So Wall Street took every company public, creating enormous paper wealth. The Federal Reserve helped out by pretending to be nervous about Y2K and printing an enormous amount of money to keep things going, which led to a housing boom. Then Wall Street joined in by coming up with creative ways to bundle the housing loans to create more paper wealth for everyone. I have no political agenda in saying this. Nor am I blaming anyone. Everyone was looking out for their own interests: the spenders on Main Street, the government, Wall Street, and all the bureaucrats, lobbyists, bloated corporations, media, and everybody in between.


pages: 894 words: 190,485

Write Great Code, Volume 1 by Randall Hyde

AltaVista, business process, Donald Knuth, John von Neumann, locality of reference, Von Neumann architecture, Y2K

program dateDemo; #include( "stdlib.hhf" ) static day: uns8; month: uns8; year: uns8; packedDate: word; begin dateDemo; stdout.put( "Enter the current month, day, and year: " ); stdin.get( month, day, year ); // Pack the data into the following bits: // // 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 // m m m m d d d d d y y y y y y y mov( 0, ax ); mov( ax, packedDate ); //Just in case there is an error. if( month > 12 ) then stdout.put( "Month value is too large", nl ); elseif( month = 0 ) then stdout.put( "Month value must be in the range 1..12", nl ); elseif( day > 31 ) then stdout.put( "Day value is too large", nl ); elseif( day = 0 ) then stdout.put( "Day value must be in the range 1..31", nl ); elseif( year > 99 ) then stdout.put( "Year value must be in the range 0..99", nl ); else mov( month, al ); shl( 5, ax ); or( day, al ); shl( 7, ax ); or( year, al ); mov( ax, packedDate ); endif; // Okay, display the packed value: stdout.put( "Packed data = $", packedDate, nl ); // Unpack the date: mov( packedDate, ax ); and( $7f, al ); // Retrieve the year value. mov( al, year ); mov( packedDate, ax ); // Retrieve the day value. shr( 7, ax ); and( %1_1111, al ); mov( al, day ); mov( packedDate, ax ); // Retrieve the month value. rol( 4, ax ); and( %1111, al ); mov( al, month ); stdout.put( "The date is ", month, "/", day, "/", year, nl ); end dateDemo; Keeping in mind the Y2K[9] problem, adopting a date format that only supports a two-digit year is rather foolish. So consider a better date format, shown in Figure 3-7. Figure 3-7. Long packed date format (32 bits) Because there are more bits in a 32-bit variable than are needed to hold the date, even accounting for years in the range 0–65,535, this format allots a full byte for the month and day fields. Because these two fields are bytes, an application can easily manipulate them as byte objects, reducing the overhead to pack and unpack these fields on those processors that support byte access.

rational representation of fractional, 2.11 Scaled Numeric Formats representable with bit strings, 2.4.2 Bit Strings scale, 10.4.1 Encoding Instruction Operands signed integer, 2.4.2 Bit Strings special floating-point, 4.4 Rounding subtracting binary, 3.1.1 Adding Binary Values unnormalized, 4.3 Normalization and Denormalized Values unsigned integer, 2.4.2 Bit Strings variable, 6.5.2 The Indirect Addressing Mode, 6.5.2 The Indirect Addressing Mode, 7.1.2 Pointers and Dynamic Memory Allocation, 7.2.1 Array Declarations, 8.2 Boolean Functions and Truth Tables, 8.5.3 Product of Maxterms Canonical Form, 11.9.6 The Heap Section and Dynamic Memory Allocation accessing pointer, 6.5.2 The Indirect Addressing Mode anonymous, 7.1.2 Pointers and Dynamic Memory Allocation, 11.9.6 The Heap Section and Dynamic Memory Allocation automatic, 7.2.1 Array Declarations OR truth table for two, 8.5.3 Product of Maxterms Canonical Form truth table format for function of three, 8.2 Boolean Functions and Truth Tables variable section, static, 11.9.1 Static and Dynamic Objects, Binding, and Lifetime variable-length instructions, 10.2.1 Choosing Opcode Length variant records, 6.3 Big Endian Versus Little Endian Organization very long instruction word (VLIW) architecture, 9.4.8 Register Renaming virtual address, 11.5 Virtual Memory, Protection, and Paging virtual memory, 11.1 The Memory Hierarchy, 11.4.7 Cache Use and Software, 11.5 Virtual Memory, Protection, and Paging, 12.18 RAM Disks and Semiconductor Disks protection and paging, 11.4.7 Cache Use and Software subsystem, swap storage for a, 12.18 RAM Disks and Semiconductor Disks Virtual Sound Canvas, 12.26.2 The Audio and MIDI File Formats virtual synthesizers, 12.26.2 The Audio and MIDI File Formats Visual Basic, 2.2.4 The Hexadecimal Numbering System, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings bitwise operators, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings hexadecimal representation, 2.2.4 The Hexadecimal Numbering System VLIW (very long instruction word), 9.4.8 Register Renaming von Neumann machine, 6.1 The Basic System Components von Neumann, John, 6.1 The Basic System Components W wait state, 6.4.1 Memory Access and the System Clock, 6.4.2 Wait States, 6.4.3 Cache Memory and memory read operation, 6.4.2 Wait States average, 6.4.3 Cache Memory WAV files, 12.26.1 How Audio Interface Peripherals Produce Sound wave table synthesis, 12.26.1 How Audio Interface Peripherals Produce Sound wide buses, 9.4.2 Conditions That Hinder the Performance of the Prefetch Queue Wide SCSI, 12.19 SCSI Devices and Controllers Windows port access, 12.9 Interrupts and Polled I/O Windows run-time memory, 11.8 Writing Software That Is Cognizant of the Memory Hierarchy word, 2.4.2 Bit Strings, 2.4.2 Bit Strings, 6.2 Physical Organization of Memory, 6.2.1 8-Bit Data Buses, 6.2.2 16-Bit Data Buses, 6.2.2 16-Bit Data Buses, 6.2.5 Small Accesses on Non-80x86 Processors, 6.3 Big Endian Versus Little Endian Organization, 6.3 Big Endian Versus Little Endian Organization alternate byte layout, 6.2.5 Small Accesses on Non-80x86 Processors at arbitrary addresses, 6.2.1 8-Bit Data Buses at odd addresses, accessing, 6.2.2 16-Bit Data Buses composition of, 2.4.2 Bit Strings endian conversion, 6.3 Big Endian Versus Little Endian Organization in byte-addressable memory, 6.2 Physical Organization of Memory stored at odd addresses, 6.2.2 16-Bit Data Buses two bytes in, 2.4.2 Bit Strings working sets, 11.5 Virtual Memory, Protection, and Paging workstations, diskless, 12.15 Disk Drives WORM (write-once, read many), 12.15.6 CD-ROM, CD-R, CR-R/W, DVD, DVD-R, DVD-RAM, and DVD-R/W Drives write control line, 6.1.3 The Control Bus write cycle, 6.4.1 Memory Access and the System Clock write lifetime, 12.17 Flash Storage write operation, 6.2 Physical Organization of Memory, 6.4.1 Memory Access and the System Clock, 6.4.1 Memory Access and the System Clock memory, 6.2 Physical Organization of Memory on the bus, 6.4.1 Memory Access and the System Clock write policy, 11.4.5 Cache Line Replacement Policies, 11.4.5 Cache Line Replacement Policies, 11.4.6 Writing Data to Memory write-back cache, 11.4.5 Cache Line Replacement Policies write-through cache, 11.4.5 Cache Line Replacement Policies write-only output ports, 12.1 Connecting a CPU to the Outside World write-only ports, 12.1 Connecting a CPU to the Outside World writing to memory, 6.1.3 The Control Bus X x86-64 processors, AMD, 6.1.1.1 The Data Bus XOR, 3.2 Logical Operations on Bits, 3.2 Logical Operations on Bits, 3.2 Logical Operations on Bits operation, 3.2 Logical Operations on Bits truth table, 3.2 Logical Operations on Bits Y Y2K problem, 3.6 Bit Fields and Packed Data Y86, 10.2.4 Assigning Opcodes to Instructions, 10.3 The Y86 Hypothetical Processor, 10.3 The Y86 Hypothetical Processor, 10.3.1 Y86 Limitations, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.3 Addressing Modes on the Y86, 10.3.3 Addressing Modes on the Y86, 10.3.4 Encoding Y86 Instructions, 10.3.4.1 Eight Generic Y86 Instructions, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.3 The not Instruction, 10.3.6 Extending the Y86 Instruction Set conditional jumps, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode expansion opcodes, 10.3.4.1 Eight Generic Y86 Instructions hypothetical processor, 10.2.4 Assigning Opcodes to Instructions instruction set, 10.3.6 Extending the Y86 Instruction Set instructions, 10.3 The Y86 Hypothetical Processor, 10.3.1 Y86 Limitations, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.4 Encoding Y86 Instructions, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction, 10.3.5.3 The not Instruction cmp, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction control transfer, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions encoding, 10.3.4 Encoding Y86 Instructions get, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions halt, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions ja, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jae, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jb, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jbe, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions je, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jmp, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jne, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions jump, 10.3.5.3 The not Instruction mov, 10.3 The Y86 Hypothetical Processor, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction not, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction or, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction put, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions sub, 10.3.2.2 Arithmetic and Logical Instructions, 10.3.5.1 The add Instruction limitations, 10.3 The Y86 Hypothetical Processor modes, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions, 10.3.3 Addressing Modes on the Y86, 10.3.3 Addressing Modes on the Y86 addressing modes, 10.3.3 Addressing Modes on the Y86 direct addressing mode, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions indexed addressing, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions indirect addressing, 10.3.2.3 Control Transfer Instructions Y86 hypothetical processor, 10.2.4 Assigning Opcodes to Instructions Z zero, 2.6 Some Useful Properties of Binary Numbers, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings, 4.5 Special Floating-Point Values, 4.6 Floating-Point Exceptions, 9.3 Executing Instructions, Step by Step division by, 4.6 Floating-Point Exceptions extension, 2.6 Some Useful Properties of Binary Numbers flag, 9.3 Executing Instructions, Step by Step forcing bits to, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings testing bits for, 3.3 Logical Operations on Binary Numbers and Bit Strings zero-operand, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode, 10.3.5.4 The Jump Instructions instruction encodings, 10.3.4.2 Using the Special Expansion Opcode instructions, 10.3.5.4 The Jump Instructions zero-terminated string, 5.2.1.1 Zero-Terminated Strings zero/not zero, using and testing for, 3.4.1 Testing Bits in a Bit String Using AND Zip drives, 12.15.3 RAID Systems Write Great Code, Volume 1 Randall Hyde Editor William Pollock Copyright © 2012 All rights reserved.


pages: 278 words: 82,069

Meltdown: How Greed and Corruption Shattered Our Financial System and How We Can Recover by Katrina Vanden Heuvel, William Greider

Asian financial crisis, banking crisis, Bretton Woods, business cycle, buy and hold, capital controls, carried interest, central bank independence, centre right, collateralized debt obligation, conceptual framework, corporate governance, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, declining real wages, deindustrialization, Exxon Valdez, falling living standards, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, fixed income, floating exchange rates, full employment, housing crisis, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, information asymmetry, John Meriwether, kremlinology, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, market fundamentalism, McMansion, money market fund, mortgage debt, Naomi Klein, new economy, offshore financial centre, payday loans, pets.com, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, price stability, pushing on a string, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, rent control, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, sovereign wealth fund, structural adjustment programs, The Great Moderation, too big to fail, trade liberalization, transcontinental railway, trickle-down economics, union organizing, wage slave, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, working poor, Y2K

Meanwhile, protecting the supply side of the economy, the chairman came to the rescue of the financial system and financial firms again and again, whenever they encountered serious peril or the stock market seriously wilted. The 1998 collapse of Long Term Capital Management was interpreted as threatening the safety of the financial system, so the Fed stepped in (what happened to the therapeutic effects of market discipline?). Likewise, the Fed reacted aggressively to the Russian debt crisis that year and the jitters over the “Y2K crisis” of 2000, and Greenspan provided quick liquidity or interest-rate cuts to calm other financial-market upsets. Greenspan did not formally try to deregulate the banking system, but simply declined to use the Fed’s regulatory powers to enforce regular order or discipline fraudulent behavior. In the name of greater efficiency he engineered legal approval for new megabanks like Citigroup even before Congress changed the law.


pages: 302 words: 84,428

Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side by Howard Marks

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Albert Einstein, business cycle, collateralized debt obligation, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, financial innovation, fixed income, if you build it, they will come, income inequality, Isaac Newton, job automation, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, money market fund, moral hazard, new economy, profit motive, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, Richard Feynman, Richard Thaler, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, secular stagnation, short selling, South Sea Bubble, stocks for the long run, superstar cities, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, transaction costs, VA Linux, Y2K, yield curve

This led us to sell assets; replace large, liquidating distressed debt funds with smaller ones; increase our level of risk-consciousness and conservatism; and raise a stand-by fund several times our largest ever in order to take advantage of the distressed debt opportunities we felt might materialize. What was the basis on which we did this? In retrospect it was easy . . . although it never seems as easy in real time. All you really had to do in 2005–07 was make the following general observations: the Fed had reduced the base rate of interest to very low levels in order to ward off the depressing effects of the tech bubble’s bursting, as well as concern over Y2K; because of the low yields available on Treasurys and high grade bonds, as well as the disenchantment with equities that had resulted from their three-year decline in 2000–02, investors were eager to put money into alternative instruments; investors had shrugged off the pain of the collapse of the tech bubble in 2000 and the telecom meltdown and corporate scandals of 2001–02; thus little risk aversion was present (especially in areas other than equities, which remained out of favor), rendering investors generally eager for investments in exotic, structured and synthetic instruments; and as a result of all the above, the markets were wide open for the issuance of low-quality debt, poorly structured instruments and untested alternatives.


Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything by Lydia Kang, Nate Pedersen

Albert Einstein, complexity theory, germ theory of disease, helicopter parent, Honoré de Balzac, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Louis Pasteur, placebo effect, stem cell, the scientific method, traveling salesman, Upton Sinclair, wikimedia commons, Y2K

The rich who ingested enough silver from their spoons that it changed their skin color were known as “blue-bloods.” Like silver lovers of yore, some proponents today consume so much silver to prevent infections that it’s turned their skin blue (a condition known as argyria). Stan Jones, a Libertarian politician who unsuccessfully ran for Senate and Montana governor twice between 2000 and 2006, had developed a severe case of argyria after drinking large amounts of colloidal silver to prepare for Y2K, thinking there would be an antibiotic shortage. Speaking to reporters about his gray-blue skin, he said, “People ask me if it’s permanent and if I’m dead. I tell them I’m practicing for Halloween.” Or a Smurf parade, perhaps. A true blue Libertarian. The Modern Gilded Age Nowadays, people would be surprised to hear that gold actually does have a legitimate place in the medical toolbox.


pages: 244 words: 81,334

Picnic Comma Lightning: In Search of a New Reality by Laurence Scott

4chan, Airbnb, airport security, augmented reality, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Boris Johnson, clean water, colonial rule, cryptocurrency, dematerialisation, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, housing crisis, Internet of things, Joan Didion, job automation, late capitalism, Mark Zuckerberg, Narrative Science, Productivity paradox, QR code, ride hailing / ride sharing, Saturday Night Live, sentiment analysis, Silicon Valley, Skype, Slavoj Žižek, Snapchat, Y2K

Coined by the Guardian sketch-writer John Crace, this nickname lends itself to talk of glitches and malfunctions. This caricature mockingly suggests that there is no real sentience at the helm of British political life, just a broken machine caught in a faulty loop. In America, Trump’s rise to power was for many a sublime event. The Trump presidency was predicted by an episode of The Simpsons from the turn of the millennium, as if the true Y2K bug, all along, was a terrible idea with a long incubation phase. So many of our largest anxieties have this retrospective, fictionalised quality to them, a dated twentieth-century kitschness that can make them feel somehow unbelievable. In circulation are Cold War pictures of Fifties children crouched under school desks. Scientists have just begun to show off broad-shouldered, humanoid robots that can do back-flips.


pages: 273 words: 85,195

Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century by Jessica Bruder

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, back-to-the-land, big-box store, Burning Man, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, full employment, game design, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, income inequality, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Mars Rover, new economy, off grid, payday loans, Pepto Bismol, precariat, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, sharing economy, six sigma, supply-chain management, union organizing, urban sprawl, white picket fence, Y2K

On January 1, 2002, Ghost Dancer was parked outside a McDonald’s on Highway 41 in Vincennes, Indiana, in his home, a brown 1989 Ford F150 pickup. He’d heard that the changeover deadline for message boards was the end of the day. He worried: Were his new friends, already scattered across the country, about to lose their clubhouse on the internet? Not knowing what would happen was eating him up, like the buildup to Y2K writ small. Yet he had done nothing to prepare. When the solution came, it seemed obvious: Why not create a new gathering place before the old one went dark? To do this, Ghost Dancer couldn’t just stroll into McDonald’s with a laptop. For starters, he didn’t own a laptop, and WiFi hotspots wouldn’t be ubiquitous for another a few years. So he jury-rigged an internet connection between the pay phone and the limited equipment he carried in the truck.


pages: 389 words: 81,596

Quit Like a Millionaire: No Gimmicks, Luck, or Trust Fund Required by Kristy Shen, Bryce Leung

"side hustle", Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, asset allocation, barriers to entry, buy low sell high, call centre, car-free, Columbine, cuban missile crisis, Deng Xiaoping, Elon Musk, fear of failure, financial independence, fixed income, follow your passion, hedonic treadmill, income inequality, index fund, longitudinal study, low cost airline, Mark Zuckerberg, mortgage debt, obamacare, offshore financial centre, passive income, Ponzi scheme, risk tolerance, risk/return, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, the rule of 72, working poor, Y2K, Zipcar

By this time, our family finances had stabilized somewhat, but we were still sending money back to China, and, like my dad forty years earlier, I knew I had exactly one shot. I couldn’t risk graduating without being able to find a job. My degree had to help me become independent as quickly as possible. I didn’t want to end up like my mom. WHY I DIDN’T FOLLOW MY PASSION The year was 2000. The Backstreet Boys were on top of the charts, the world hadn’t blown up from Y2K, and for most people, a degree was just a means to an end—getting a job. In fact, even though it seems like it’s been around forever, the phrase “follow your passion” is relatively new. According to Benjamin Todd, CEO and founder of 80000Hours.org, the phrase spiked around 2005, when Steve Jobs gave a commencement speech at Stanford, in which he said, “There’s no reason not to follow your heart.”1 Nowadays, we hear that advice over and over again, drawing young graduates like moths to a flame.


pages: 620 words: 214,639

House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street by William D. Cohan

asset-backed security, call centre, collateralized debt obligation, corporate governance, corporate raider, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, Deng Xiaoping, diversification, Financial Instability Hypothesis, fixed income, Hyman Minsky, Irwin Jacobs, John Meriwether, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, merger arbitrage, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, mutually assured destruction, Myron Scholes, New Journalism, Northern Rock, Renaissance Technologies, Rod Stewart played at Stephen Schwarzman birthday party, savings glut, shareholder value, sovereign wealth fund, too big to fail, traveling salesman, Y2K, yield curve

And assuming Cayne and the other top executives could make progress in building the firm's investment banking business (still relatively tiny), its presence in Europe (still negligible at best), and its asset management business (with about $15 billion of assets under management, a peanut compared to around $600 billion of assets under management at Merrill Lynch), there appeared to be a fair amount of upside potential in the earning power of the firm, assuming markets stayed favorable and the management could execute. That potential helped explain Spector's decision to convert most of his compensation into the firm's stock. And then in early 2000—just after everyone recovered from the specter of Y2K damaging Wall Street computers—the game of consolidation on Wall Street took a quantum leap forward. At first the deals were relatively small. In September 1999, Chase Manhattan Bank bought Hambrecht & Quist, a technology investment bank in San Francisco, for $1.3 billion as a way to try to participate in the Internet underwriting boom. In January 2000, Citigroup bought Schroeder's investment banking business for $2.2 billion.

The focus of the McKinsey study was “to try to invigorate certain of our businesses, to invigorate their growth, and to cut costs,” Molinaro explained. “So it was a two-prong strategy. Invigorate growth and cut costs.” But, Friedman said, there were few recommendations to increase revenues. “They come in and all they do is cut costs,” he said, “and we did almost nothing on the revenue side. They cut the IT budget by hundreds of millions of dollars, some of which was needed, because it had swelled after the whole fear over Y2K. We fired a thousand people, and at the same time we were building this beautiful building. We cut a lot of costs, which just meant that when you cut your IT investment, you're mortgaging the future, which we did. We cut hundreds of clerks. We took nothing out of the executive committee compensation pool. We did nothing to the way we run the place. We did nothing to the management structure. We did nothing to the executive compensation structure.


pages: 310 words: 90,817

Paper Money Collapse: The Folly of Elastic Money and the Coming Monetary Breakdown by Detlev S. Schlichter

bank run, banks create money, British Empire, business cycle, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, currency peg, fixed income, Fractional reserve banking, German hyperinflation, global reserve currency, inflation targeting, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, Long Term Capital Management, market clearing, Martin Wolf, means of production, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, open economy, Ponzi scheme, price discovery process, price mechanism, price stability, pushing on a string, quantitative easing, reserve currency, rising living standards, risk tolerance, savings glut, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, transaction costs, Y2K

Since the late 1990s the Fed has on various occasions successfully extended the credit boom: in 1998, when the collapse of the Long Term Capital Management hedge fund and the default of Russia threatened to kick off a wave of international deleveraging; toward the end of 1999, when the Fed injected substantial amounts of money prohibitively out of concern about potential computer problems related to Y2K; between 2001 and 2004, after the Enron and WorldCom corporate failures and the bursting of the NASDAQ bubble, when the Fed left interest rates at 1 percent for three years. As one should expect, and as is now abundantly clear, the credit excesses and mispricing of assets have reached phenomenal proportions. In the 10 years to the start of the most recent crisis in 2007, bank balance sheets in the United States more than doubled, from $4.7 trillion to $10.2 trillion.3 The Fed’s M2 measure of total money supply rose over the same period from less than $4 trillion to more than $7 trillion.4 From 1996 to 2006, total mortgage debt outstanding in the United States almost tripled, from $4.8 trillion to $13.5 trillion,5 as house prices appreciated, in inflation-adjusted terms, three times faster as over the preceding 100 years.6 Why I Wrote This Book It seems undeniable that elastic money has not brought greater stability.


pages: 474 words: 91,222

Effective STL: 50 Specific Ways to Improve Your Use of the Standard Template Library by Scott Meyers

locality of reference, sorting algorithm, Y2K

It’s meaningless except in the context of a particular locale, so a character comparison function object needs to store locale information. If speed is a concern, you should write the function object to avoid repeated calls of expensive facet operations. Correct case-insensitive comparison takes a fair amount of machinery, but you only have to write it once. You probably don’t want to think about locales; most people don’t. (Who wanted to think about Y2K bugs in 1990?) You stand a better chance of being able to ignore locales if you get locale-dependent code right, though, than if you write code that glosses over the dependencies. Appendix B. Remarks on Microsoft’s STL Platforms In the opening pages of this book, I introduced the term STL platform to refer to the combination of a particular compiler and a particular implementation of the Standard Template Library.


pages: 339 words: 94,769

Possible Minds: Twenty-Five Ways of Looking at AI by John Brockman

AI winter, airport security, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bill Joy: nanobots, Buckminster Fuller, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Danny Hillis, David Graeber, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, Ernest Rutherford, finite state, friendly AI, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, gig economy, income inequality, industrial robot, information retrieval, invention of writing, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Laplace demon, Loebner Prize, market fundamentalism, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, optical character recognition, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, Picturephone, profit maximization, profit motive, RAND corporation, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Rodney Brooks, self-driving car, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, speech recognition, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supervolcano, technological singularity, technoutopianism, telemarketer, telerobotics, the scientific method, theory of mind, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K, zero-sum game

In the debate about AI risk, he argues against prophecies of doom and gloom, noting that they spring from the worst of our psychological biases—exemplified particularly by media reports: “Disaster scenarios are cheap to play out in the probability-free zone of our imaginations, and they can always find a worried, technophobic, or morbidly fascinated audience.” Hence, over the centuries: Pandora, Faust, the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Frankenstein, the population bomb, resource depletion, HAL, suitcase nukes, the Y2K bug, and engulfment by nanotechnological grey goo. “A characteristic of AI dystopias,” he points out, “is that they project a parochial alpha-male psychology onto the concept of intelligence. . . . History does turn up the occasional megalomaniacal despot or psychopathic serial killer, but these are products of a history of natural selection shaping testosterone-sensitive circuits in a certain species of primate, not an inevitable feature of intelligent systems.”


pages: 374 words: 94,508

Infonomics: How to Monetize, Manage, and Measure Information as an Asset for Competitive Advantage by Douglas B. Laney

3D printing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, banking crisis, blockchain, business climate, business intelligence, business process, call centre, chief data officer, Claude Shannon: information theory, commoditize, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, dark matter, data acquisition, digital twin, discounted cash flows, disintermediation, diversification, en.wikipedia.org, endowment effect, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, informal economy, intangible asset, Internet of things, linked data, Lyft, Nash equilibrium, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, performance metric, profit motive, recommendation engine, RFID, semantic web, smart meter, Snapchat, software as a service, source of truth, supply-chain management, text mining, uber lyft, Y2K, yield curve

These challenges related to the emergence of e-commerce, an increasing number of documents, images, and other unstructured data types, and electronic interactions among business. While many clients were lamenting and many vendors were seizing the opportunity of these fast-growing data stores, I also realized that something else was going on. Sea changes in the speed at which data was flowing mainly due to electronic commerce—along with the increasing breadth of data sources, structures, and formats due to the Y2K-centered ERP application boom—were as or more challenging to data management teams than was the increasing quantity of data. I defined these three-dimensional challenges as a confluence of a rising volume of data, increasing velocity of data, and widening variety of data.7 These “three Vs,” as they’re known, formed the basis for understanding and defining what today is known as “Big Data.”8 While most information management professionals and nearly all vendors obsess over the size (volume) of information, this represents only one facet of magnitude (i.e., bigness).


pages: 327 words: 90,542

The Age of Stagnation: Why Perpetual Growth Is Unattainable and the Global Economy Is in Peril by Satyajit Das

"Robert Solow", 9 dash line, accounting loophole / creative accounting, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Anton Chekhov, Asian financial crisis, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Bretton Woods, BRICs, British Empire, business cycle, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, capital controls, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Carmen Reinhart, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collaborative economy, colonial exploitation, computer age, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, Downton Abbey, Emanuel Derman, energy security, energy transition, eurozone crisis, financial innovation, financial repression, forward guidance, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, gig economy, Gini coefficient, global reserve currency, global supply chain, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, happiness index / gross national happiness, Honoré de Balzac, hydraulic fracturing, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, income inequality, income per capita, indoor plumbing, informal economy, Innovator's Dilemma, intangible asset, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jane Jacobs, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kenneth Rogoff, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, light touch regulation, liquidity trap, Long Term Capital Management, low skilled workers, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, margin call, market design, Marshall McLuhan, Martin Wolf, Mikhail Gorbachev, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, old age dependency ratio, open economy, passive income, peak oil, peer-to-peer lending, pension reform, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, precariat, price stability, profit maximization, pushing on a string, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, Rana Plaza, rent control, rent-seeking, reserve currency, ride hailing / ride sharing, rising living standards, risk/return, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Satyajit Das, savings glut, secular stagnation, seigniorage, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Slavoj Žižek, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, TaskRabbit, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth, the market place, the payments system, The Spirit Level, Thorstein Veblen, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, total factor productivity, trade route, transaction costs, uber lyft, unpaid internship, Unsafe at Any Speed, Upton Sinclair, Washington Consensus, We are the 99%, WikiLeaks, Y2K, Yom Kippur War, zero-coupon bond, zero-sum game

In colonial times, raw materials generally moved from the colonies to the colonizers, with a balancing flow of manufactured products in the opposite direction. Now, this flow was reversed. Emerging nations combined their cheap labor and local or imported resources with foreign technology or capital to manufacture and export goods and services to developed countries. Improvements in technology, telecommunications, and transport allowed cheaper emerging nations to compete with advanced economies. One-off events were important. The Y2K software problems fueled the development of India's software industry. The new economy was centered on China, now the world's factory, exporting around 50 percent of its output. It imported resources and parts that were then assembled or processed and shipped out again. Smaller emerging economies, especially in Asia, became integrated into new Sino-centric global supply chains. Consultant David Rothkopf highlighted the uneven balance of power within emerging markets: “Without China, the BRICs are just the BRI, a bland, soft cheese that is primarily known for the whine [sic] that goes with it…”8 China was now the largest purchaser of iron ore and other metals, and one of the biggest purchasers of cotton and soybeans.


pages: 329 words: 95,309

Digital Bank: Strategies for Launching or Becoming a Digital Bank by Chris Skinner

algorithmic trading, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, augmented reality, bank run, Basel III, bitcoin, business cycle, business intelligence, business process, business process outsourcing, buy and hold, call centre, cashless society, clean water, cloud computing, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, demand response, disintermediation, don't be evil, en.wikipedia.org, fault tolerance, fiat currency, financial innovation, Google Glasses, high net worth, informal economy, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, M-Pesa, margin call, mass affluent, MITM: man-in-the-middle, mobile money, Mohammed Bouazizi, new economy, Northern Rock, Occupy movement, Pingit, platform as a service, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, pre–internet, QR code, quantitative easing, ransomware, reserve currency, RFID, Satoshi Nakamoto, Silicon Valley, smart cities, social intelligence, software as a service, Steve Jobs, strong AI, Stuxnet, trade route, unbanked and underbanked, underbanked, upwardly mobile, We are the 99%, web application, WikiLeaks, Y2K

That’s why banks would not change or touch these systems and is the reason why, once they were up and running and working, they would be left to run and work non-stop. “If it ain’t broke, don’t touch it”, was the mantra. The systems were then added to layer by layer, as new requirements came along. ATMs were added, call centres and then internet banking, and the core systems just about kept up. This process is less true in the investment world - where many systems were replaced lock, stock and barrel for that old bugbear Y2K - but the retail bank world let their core systems become so ingrained and embedded that changing, replacing or removing them became sacrosanct. Then the world moved on, and technology became a rapid fire world of consumer focused technologies. Add to this the regulatory regime change, which would force banks to respond more and more rapidly to new requirements, and the old technologies could not keep up.


I Love Capitalism!: An American Story by Ken Langone

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, business climate, corporate governance, East Village, fixed income, glass ceiling, income inequality, Paul Samuelson, Ronald Reagan, short selling, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, six sigma, VA Linux, Y2K, zero-sum game

Again he went the extra mile—visiting institutional investors, visiting the head of Merrill Lynch—to pitch for order flow and the transparency of buying and selling shares on the floor of the exchange versus over the counter. And the market share held, but that wasn’t Grasso’s only challenge that year. In 1999, as we were about to flip the calendar to the new millennium, there was great angst on the exchange about Y2K. What would happen if someplace in our behemoth computer system we forgot to ratchet 1999 over to 2000? We spent a billion dollars on crash-prevention hardware that year; we paid $80 million in sales tax on the hardware we bought! We had backup systems for backup systems for backup systems. And then, when the clock ticked over to 1/1/2000 . . . nothing happened. All our concerns evaporated. We had entered the new millennium with phenomenal operating numbers: making a shit-pile of money, every penny of which we needed, not just for those crash-prevention systems, but for trading technology and big-time taxes—income taxes, real-estate taxes, payroll taxes.


pages: 312 words: 93,836

Barometer of Fear: An Insider's Account of Rogue Trading and the Greatest Banking Scandal in History by Alexis Stenfors

Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, bonus culture, capital controls, collapse of Lehman Brothers, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, eurozone crisis, financial deregulation, financial innovation, fixed income, game design, Gordon Gekko, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, interest rate derivative, interest rate swap, London Interbank Offered Rate, loss aversion, mental accounting, millennium bug, Nick Leeson, Northern Rock, oil shock, price stability, profit maximization, regulatory arbitrage, reserve currency, Rubik’s Cube, Snapchat, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, Y2K

For instance, on 29 November 1999, the one-month US dollar LIBOR jumped 86 basis points because of fears surrounding the so-called ‘millennium bug’. Considering that the Federal Reserve often tended to cut or raise interest rates in 25 basis points at a time, and rarely changed them more than a few times per year, 86 basis points represented a remarkably large move. Banks had spent billions on system upgrades and contingency plans relating to the Y2K software problem. What would happen if we arrived in the office after the New Year’s celebrations to find that the date was 1 January 1900, rather than 1 January 2000? A collapse of the banking system and a return to the Stone Age, it was thought. Therefore, banks borrowed money as a precaution and LIBOR shot up. Soon after I had returned from Tokyo to London and joined Crédit Agricole Indosuez, two planes flew into the World Trade Center in New York.


Hiding in Plain Sight: The Invention of Donald Trump and the Erosion of America by Sarah Kendzior

"side hustle", 4chan, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, borderless world, Chelsea Manning, Columbine, corporate raider, desegregation, don't be evil, Donald Trump, drone strike, Edward Snowden, Ferguson, Missouri, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, hiring and firing, illegal immigration, income inequality, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, Jeffrey Epstein, Julian Assange, Mohammed Bouazizi, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, new economy, payday loans, plutocrats, Plutocrats, QAnon, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Thomas L Friedman, trickle-down economics, unpaid internship, white flight, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero-sum game

The trip was a birthday treat; I had just turned twenty-three. On September 11, we woke up late and went out to get breakfast. This was the era before smartphones and we hadn’t turned on the TV, so we spent the early morning oblivious to the outside world. We were driving on a country road when we turned on the radio and heard Dan Rather saying that the World Trade Center had collapsed. Our first thought was that this was a delayed Y2K joke that had gotten on the air by mistake. Within minutes we knew the news report was no lapsed parody. We could hear the anguish in Rather’s voice as he announced the estimated casualty count to be in the tens of thousands. I remember screaming, “It’s real, it’s real, turn around!” and crying as we raced back to the house, where we spent all day watching the one channel the TV could pick up while calling our friends to see if they were alive.


pages: 487 words: 95,085

JPod by Douglas Coupland

Asperger Syndrome, Drosophila, finite state, G4S, game design, Maui Hawaii, McMansion, neurotypical, pez dispenser, pre–internet, QWERTY keyboard, Ronald Reagan, special economic zone, wage slave, Y2K

Brain freeze Milk products Nestle Mineral-deficient baby formula Switzerland Corporations Globalization Milkshakes everywhere Even India Dairy products Cows Confusion Ancestors Apu from the Kwik-E-Mart Donuts The Fox Network Five thousand channels Heather Locklear Healthy, shimmering hair Computer-generated hair Pixar cartoon frames in a render farm First weekend box office DVD sales Home entertainment systems Karaoke Fear of Karaoke Abandoning the party Driving Shitty old car Rain Car commercials Money Never enough Coupland's business thing with Kam Rage Raging Bull 1970s films Al Pacino Eyes like Woody Woodpecker Cartoons of the 1940s Ultraviolence A Clockwork Orange Heaven 17 Pop hits of the 1980s Pet Shop Boys London Plagues Ebola Y2K Hype Lies . . . and so on. Kwantlen College Learning Annex Course 3072-A Assignment: Discuss Your Job with Somebody Who Probably Doesn't Care about It "Flog the Dead Donkey" by Kaitlin Anna Boyd Joyce Jim Jarlewski is my boyfriend's father. He's a fifty something former financial consultant turned agricultural entrepreneur, a ballroom dance legend and a movie acting extra. Phew!


pages: 313 words: 101,403

My Life as a Quant: Reflections on Physics and Finance by Emanuel Derman

Berlin Wall, bioinformatics, Black-Scholes formula, Brownian motion, buy and hold, capital asset pricing model, Claude Shannon: information theory, Donald Knuth, Emanuel Derman, fixed income, Gödel, Escher, Bach, haute couture, hiring and firing, implied volatility, interest rate derivative, Jeff Bezos, John Meriwether, John von Neumann, law of one price, linked data, Long Term Capital Management, moral hazard, Murray Gell-Mann, Myron Scholes, Paul Samuelson, pre–internet, publish or perish, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Sharpe ratio, statistical arbitrage, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, stochastic volatility, technology bubble, the new new thing, transaction costs, volatility smile, Y2K, yield curve, zero-coupon bond, zero-sum game

Programs were therefore error-prone as well as hard for humans to understand and modify-implicitly, they were written for the computers that would mechanically execute their commands. Hard to create, programs tended to have surprisingly long subsequent lifetimes during which they required expensive maintenance, modification, and enhancement. This was the set of circumstances that caused the anxiety behind Y2K. What are you doing when you program? You are trying to use a language to specify an imagined world and its details as accurately as possible. You are trying to create this world on a machine that can understand and execute only simple commands. You do this solely by writing precise instructions, often many hundreds of thousands of lines long.Your sequence of instructions must be executed without ambiguity, by an uncomprehending automaton, the computer, and yet, in parallel, must be read, comprehended, remembered and modified by you and other programmers.


pages: 337 words: 89,075

Understanding Asset Allocation: An Intuitive Approach to Maximizing Your Portfolio by Victor A. Canto

accounting loophole / creative accounting, airline deregulation, Andrei Shleifer, asset allocation, Bretton Woods, business cycle, buy and hold, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, commodity trading advisor, corporate governance, discounted cash flows, diversification, diversified portfolio, fixed income, frictionless, high net worth, index fund, inflation targeting, invisible hand, John Meriwether, law of one price, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, low cost airline, market bubble, merger arbitrage, money market fund, new economy, passive investing, Paul Samuelson, price mechanism, purchasing power parity, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, risk/return, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, shareholder value, Sharpe ratio, short selling, statistical arbitrage, stocks for the long run, survivorship bias, the market place, transaction costs, Y2K, yield curve, zero-sum game

The Clinton administration tax hikes were not as large as the president had hoped for, but if you weigh-in the threat of Hillary Clinton’s massive health-care plan, the small-cap effect becomes more understandable. In 1995, the Republicans took over Congress, and the gridlock that followed was good for the market as far as taxes and regulations were concerned. The small-cap effect would, for a time, expire. Then, in 1999, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan began to worry about the ersatz Year 2000 (Y2K) 238 UNDERSTANDING ASSET ALLOCATION effect. He proceeded to flood the financial system with cash, only to abruptly pull the liquidity out of the system in 2000. Credit in this environment became tougher, and with the advent of the accounting scandals, the regulatory burden increased once again. The small-cap effect was back on. The data presented here, in the framework of hedge funds, again suggest neither the pure-active nor the pure-passive strategy is optimal for asset allocation.


pages: 386 words: 91,913

The Elements of Power: Gadgets, Guns, and the Struggle for a Sustainable Future in the Rare Metal Age by David S. Abraham

3D printing, Airbus A320, carbon footprint, clean water, cleantech, commoditize, Deng Xiaoping, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, glass ceiling, global supply chain, information retrieval, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, reshoring, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Tesla Model S, thinkpad, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, WikiLeaks, Y2K

Rare metal mines (and supply chains) can take up to fifteen years from investment to production according to the U.S. government and as experiences like Tiomin’s show. That means the rare metals coming out of some mines today were made in 2000. That is a lifetime ago for the tech field where many of these metals go. It’s hard to imagine that the executives who were producing material for 2015 had any concept of the smartphone or many of the products their materials are used in. At the time, they were focused on the potential fallout from the Y2K bug. Today, we are asking for tremendous technological foresight of our mining executives, especially those of junior mining companies, because they identify and evaluate new mineral deposits. They are the ones who should know where their materials will be sold in fifteen years.26 The challenge is that junior mining companies are like biotech start-ups; most, even those with the most promising projects, will fail.


pages: 146 words: 43,446

The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story by Michael Lewis

Albert Einstein, Andy Kessler, business climate, creative destruction, data acquisition, family office, high net worth, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, Marc Andreessen, Menlo Park, pre–internet, risk tolerance, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, the new new thing, Thorstein Veblen, wealth creators, Y2K

And the Panamanian government was now saying that it Page 96 might extend the height limit from 200 feet to 204 feet. The owner of the New Zealand boat, an Atlanta real estate man, figured he could suffer the inconvenience of waiting until low tide to pass through the canal for a year. After the canal became Panamanian in 2000, he could pass through anytime he pleased. Standing on one end of what was now clearly only temporarily the world's longest mast, Clark thought about his own private Y2K problem. He asked Wolter what he thought about adding an extension to the mast. Wolter muttered that he did not think it was a good idea. Finally, Clark turned to Allan, his captain, and said, "I think we should challenge this Atlanta guy to a sailboat race." Clark's life always had a topsy-turvy quality, but from the moment Netscape went public and he became Silicon Valley's newest billionaire it grew more reversed than ever.


Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? by Bill McKibben

23andMe, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, American Legislative Exchange Council, Anne Wojcicki, artificial general intelligence, Bernie Sanders, Bill Joy: nanobots, Burning Man, call centre, carbon footprint, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, Colonization of Mars, computer vision, David Attenborough, Donald Trump, double helix, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, ending welfare as we know it, energy transition, Flynn Effect, Google Earth, Hyperloop, impulse control, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jane Jacobs, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, life extension, light touch regulation, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, megacity, Menlo Park, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, obamacare, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Robert Mercer, Ronald Reagan, Sam Altman, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, smart meter, Snapchat, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, strong AI, supervolcano, technoutopianism, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, traffic fines, Travis Kalanick, urban sprawl, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Y Combinator, Y2K, yield curve

“It is hard to overestimate what it will be able to do, and impossible to know what it will think,” James Barrat writes in a book with the telling title Our Final Invention. “It does not have to hate us before choosing to use our molecules for a purpose other than keeping us alive.” As he points out, we don’t particularly hate field mice, but every hour of every day we plow under millions of their dens to make sure we have supper.27 This isn’t like, say, Y2K, where grizzled old programmers could emerge out of their retirement communities to save the day with some code. “If I tried to pull the plug on it, it’s smart enough that it’s figured out a way of stopping me,” Anders Sandberg said of his paper clip AI. “Because if I pull the plug, there will be fewer paper clips in the world and that’s bad.”28 You’ll be pleased to know that not everyone is worried.


pages: 328 words: 96,141

Rocket Billionaires: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and the New Space Race by Tim Fernholz

Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, business climate, Charles Lindbergh, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, Colonization of Mars, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, high net worth, Iridium satellite, Jeff Bezos, Kickstarter, low earth orbit, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, multiplanetary species, mutually assured destruction, new economy, nuclear paranoia, paypal mafia, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Thiel, pets.com, planetary scale, private space industry, profit maximization, RAND corporation, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, sovereign wealth fund, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, trade route, undersea cable, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, X Prize, Y2K

“But if you’re Boeing, if you’re McDonnell Douglas, if you’re NASA, there’s no glory in that. I’d do that stuff on the side, then go into work and say, ‘Hey, look what I’ve done. Can I get some [R&D] money?’ I found it was easier to build it in my garage and just keep going than to go and spend the time to try and lobby and get the funds internally. I may as well just do it myself.” Garvey left Boeing in 2000—“after Y2K,” as he put it—and set up a small space consultancy to keep building small rockets, seeking out contracts and advisory jobs. His timing was good, because Silicon Valley had finally come calling. One of the first jobs he landed was with a company called BlastOff, set up by a couple of wealthy Silicon Valley investors named Bill and Larry Gross. “There was a lot of money flowing, people wanting to do stuff.


pages: 417 words: 103,458

The Intelligence Trap: Revolutionise Your Thinking and Make Wiser Decisions by David Robson

active measures, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Atul Gawande, availability heuristic, cognitive bias, corporate governance, correlation coefficient, cuban missile crisis, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, dark matter, deliberate practice, dematerialisation, Donald Trump, Flynn Effect, framing effect, fundamental attribution error, illegal immigration, Isaac Newton, job satisfaction, knowledge economy, lone genius, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Nelson Mandela, obamacare, pattern recognition, price anchoring, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, theory of mind, traveling salesman, ultimatum game, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

While Sternberg’s research may not have revolutionised education in the way he had hoped, it has inspired other researchers to build on his concept of tacit knowledge – including some intriguing new research on the concept of ‘cultural intelligence’. Soon Ang, a professor of management at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, has pioneered much of this work. In the late 1990s, she was acting as a consultant to several multinational companies who asked her to pull together team of programmers, from many different countries, to help them cope with the ‘Y2K bug’. The programmers were undeniably intelligent and experienced, but Ang observed that they were disappointingly ineffective at working together: she found that Indian and Filipino programmers would appear to agree on a solution to a problem, for instance, only for the members to then implement it in different and incompatible ways. Although the team members were all speaking the same language, Ang realised that they were struggling to bridge the cultural divide and comprehend the different ways of working.


pages: 323 words: 95,939

Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now by Douglas Rushkoff

algorithmic trading, Andrew Keen, bank run, Benoit Mandelbrot, big-box store, Black Swan, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, cashless society, citizen journalism, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, disintermediation, Donald Trump, double helix, East Village, Elliott wave, European colonialism, Extropian, facts on the ground, Flash crash, game design, global pandemic, global supply chain, global village, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, Inbox Zero, invention of agriculture, invention of hypertext, invisible hand, iterative process, John Nash: game theory, Kevin Kelly, laissez-faire capitalism, lateral thinking, Law of Accelerating Returns, loss aversion, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Merlin Mann, Milgram experiment, mutually assured destruction, negative equity, Network effects, New Urbanism, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, Occupy movement, passive investing, pattern recognition, peak oil, price mechanism, prisoner's dilemma, Ralph Nelson Elliott, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, the medium is the message, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Turing test, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero-sum game

The roaring, net-amplified, long boom of the 1990s seemed defined by this leaning forward, this ache toward conclusion, this push toward 2000 and the ultimate calendar flip into the next millennium. Though technically still in the twentieth century, the year 2000 was a good enough marker to stand in for millennial transformation. So we anticipated the change like messianic cultists preparing for the second coming. For most of us, it took the less religious form of anticipating a Y2K computer bug where systems that had always registered years with just two digits would prove incapable of rolling over to 00. Elevators would stop, planes would fall out of the sky, nuclear plants would cease to cool their reactor cores, and the world as we know it would end. Of course, if the changeover didn’t get us, the terrorists would. The events of 9/11 hadn’t even happened yet, but on the evening of December 31, 1999, Americans were already on alert for a violent disruption of the Times Square New Year’s Eve festivities.


pages: 306 words: 97,211

Value Investing: From Graham to Buffett and Beyond by Bruce C. N. Greenwald, Judd Kahn, Paul D. Sonkin, Michael van Biema

Andrei Shleifer, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, business cycle, capital asset pricing model, corporate raider, creative destruction, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, discounted cash flows, diversified portfolio, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, fixed income, index fund, intangible asset, Long Term Capital Management, naked short selling, new economy, place-making, price mechanism, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, Richard Thaler, shareholder value, short selling, Silicon Valley, stocks for the long run, Telecommunications Act of 1996, time value of money, tulip mania, Y2K, zero-sum game

Centennial was buying inventory and customers; it had enough manufacturing capacity to support the growth in volume. Sonkin redid his intrinsic value calculation, factoring in the business bought from Intel and the cash and shares paid. Expecting the stock to rise in price once the news was digested, Sonkin bought some at the open at $4.63. By noon it was up to $5.00. He left the office for an appointment, and when he returned around 1:30 P.M. the stock had climbed to $9. At first he thought it was a Y2K bug arriving a day or two early, but a call to the trader disabused him of that thought. The $9 was real. Mr. Market was hungry again, and he had eaten up most of the margin of safety. So in the last two days of the year, Sonkin sold 60 percent of his position, at an average price of around $9.00. Table 16.3 Centennial Technologies Intrinsic Value with Intel Acquisition This story has several more legs.


The Art of Computer Programming by Donald Ervin Knuth

Brownian motion, complexity theory, correlation coefficient, Donald Knuth, Eratosthenes, G4S, Georg Cantor, information retrieval, Isaac Newton, iterative process, John von Neumann, Louis Pasteur, mandelbrot fractal, Menlo Park, NP-complete, P = NP, Paul Erdős, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, RAND corporation, random walk, sorting algorithm, Turing machine, Y2K

If Md(n) < R we have Mhd(nh) < Rh for all h, and the stated formula follows since M(nh) < {hd2+2)Rh by exercise 61(b). In an infinite field we save a factor of logiV. [This result is due to Bini and Schonhage, 1979.] 64. We have Efc(/fc0)+E^fc 9jAu)) = u2Ei<lj,fc<3 XHV'jkZkz+O^(u3), when fk(u) = + U2Xk2)(V2k + U2yik)Zkk + (Zfcl + U2Xk3)V3k((l + U)zkk - U(zkl + Zk2 + Zk2,)) ~ 2k + V3k)(zki + zk2 + zk3) and 9jfc(u) = (xki + u2Xj2)(y2k - uyij)(zkj - uzjk) + + u2Xj3)(y2k + uyij)zkj- [The best upper bound known for rank(TC, 3,3)) is 23; see the answer to exercise 12. The border rank of TB, 2, 2) remains unknown.] 65. The polynomial in the hint is u2 YL?=\ YJj^i^Vj^j + XijYijZ) + O(u3). Let Xij and Yij be indeterminates for 1 < i < m and 1 < j' < n; also set Xin = Ymj = 0, Xm:/ = — EI^T1 -^*i' ^iTl = ~~ YT=l Yij- Thus with ran + 1 multiplications of polynomials in the indeterminates we can compute xiyj for each i and j and also EI^i E^i XijYij = Y.TJilYTjZlxi3Yi3- [SICOMP 10 A981), 434-455.

Set Vo ¦(— h(X), then generate uniform deviates Vi, V-i, ¦ ¦ ¦ until finding some K > 1 with Vk-\ < Vk- For fixed X and k, the probability that h(X) > V\ > • • • > T4 is 1/fc! times the probability that max(Vi,..., Vk) < h(X), namely h(X)k/k\; hence the probability that K = k is h{X)k-x/{k - 1)! - h{X)k/kl, and the probability that K is odd is ( Therefore we reject X and try again if K is even; we accept X as a random variable with density B0) if K is odd. We usually won't have to generate many V's in order to determine K, since the average value of K (given X) is Y2k>o Fv(K > fe) = Efc>o h{X)k/k\ = eh(X) < e. Forsythe realized some years later that this approach leads to an efficient method for calculating normal deviates, without the need for any auxiliary routines to calculate square roots or logarithms as in Algorithms P and M. His procedure, with an improved choice of intervals [a.. b) due to J. H. Ahrens and U. Dieter, can be summarized as follows. Algorithm F (Odd-even method for normal deviates).


pages: 416 words: 106,532

Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor's Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond: The Innovative Investor's Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond by Chris Burniske, Jack Tatar

Airbnb, altcoin, asset allocation, asset-backed security, autonomous vehicles, bitcoin, blockchain, Blythe Masters, business cycle, business process, buy and hold, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, commoditize, correlation coefficient, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, cryptocurrency, disintermediation, distributed ledger, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, fiat currency, financial innovation, fixed income, George Gilder, Google Hangouts, high net worth, Jeff Bezos, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, Leonard Kleinrock, litecoin, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, Network effects, packet switching, passive investing, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, Peter Thiel, pets.com, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ross Ulbricht, Satoshi Nakamoto, Sharpe ratio, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, Skype, smart contracts, social web, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, transaction costs, tulip mania, Turing complete, Uber for X, Vanguard fund, WikiLeaks, Y2K

These private systems came about after Bitcoin did, when enterprises and businesses realized they liked the utility of Bitcoin’s blockchain, but weren’t comfortable or legally allowed to be as open with the information propagated among public entities. These private blockchains have thus far been most widely embraced by the financial services as a means to update IT architecture that hasn’t had a major facelift since preparation for the Y2K bug. Within financial services, these private blockchains are largely solutions by incumbents in a fight to remain incumbents. While there is merit to many of these solutions, some claim the greatest revolution has been getting large and secretive entities to work together, sharing information and best practices, which will ultimately lower the cost of services to the end consumer.5 We believe that over time the implementation of private blockchains will erode the position held by centralized powerhouses because of the tendency toward open networks.


pages: 427 words: 111,965

The Weather Makers: How Man Is Changing the Climate and What It Means for Life on Earth by Tim Flannery

Alfred Russel Wallace, carbon footprint, clean water, cross-subsidies, decarbonisation, Doomsday Clock, hydrogen economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), James Watt: steam engine, South China Sea, Stephen Hawking, uranium enrichment, Y2K

In my own country of Australia rising salt was threatening to destroy the most fertile soils, while overgrazing, degradation of waterways and the logging of forests all threatened precious ecosystems and biodiversity. To me these were the truly pressing issues. Whether we are crossing the road or paying the bills, it is the big, fastmoving things that command our attention. But seemingly large issues sometimes turn out to be a sideshow. The Y2K bug is one such example. Around the globe many governments and companies spent billions to prepare themselves against the threat, while others spent nothing; and yet 1999 gave way to 2000 with barely a hiccough, let alone an apocalypse. A sceptical eye is our greatest asset in dealing with this type of ‘problem’. And deep scepticism has a particularly important role to play in science, for a theory is only valid for as long as it has not been disproved.


pages: 422 words: 104,457

Dragnet Nation: A Quest for Privacy, Security, and Freedom in a World of Relentless Surveillance by Julia Angwin

AltaVista, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, bitcoin, Chelsea Manning, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, clean water, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, data is the new oil, David Graeber, Debian, Edward Snowden, Filter Bubble, Firefox, GnuPG, Google Chrome, Google Glasses, informal economy, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Marc Andreessen, market bubble, market design, medical residency, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mutually assured destruction, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, prediction markets, price discrimination, randomized controlled trial, RFID, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, security theater, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart meter, Steven Levy, Upton Sinclair, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero-sum game, Zimmermann PGP

Some of that is good advice—backing up files and being wary of public Wi-Fi networks, in particular—but most people who aren’t computer professionals have a hard time sorting out the necessary from the unnecessary. One reason for all the confusion: the computer security industry has to get us really scared in order to convince us to pay for their products. It is in their interest to exaggerate the threats. Remember the Y2K worldwide computer meltdown that didn’t occur? An interesting data point: most of the computer security professionals I know do not rely on antivirus software. Instead, they keep their software up to date, and they are choosy about what software they install. Most important, they do not click on links or open documents if they are not entirely sure of their origin. Some of the most paranoid computer security professionals I know also have minimal information about themselves available on social networks.


pages: 374 words: 111,284

The AI Economy: Work, Wealth and Welfare in the Robot Age by Roger Bootle

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, agricultural Revolution, AI winter, Albert Einstein, anti-work, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Bernie Sanders, blockchain, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Chris Urmson, computer age, conceptual framework, corporate governance, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deindustrialization, deskilling, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, facts on the ground, financial intermediation, full employment, future of work, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of the wheel, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, mega-rich, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, positional goods, quantitative easing, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, social intelligence, spinning jenny, Stanislav Petrov, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, universal basic income, US Airways Flight 1549, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, wealth creators, winner-take-all economy, Y2K, Yogi Berra

Economic contraction is pretty much inevitable, and it will get so serious that something will have to be done.3 Similar views have been expressed by leading tech entrepreneurs, including Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, and distinguished scientists such as the late Sir Stephen Hawking, the discoverer of black holes and much else besides.4 Yet some cynics, admittedly mostly from outside the ranks of the AI experts, seem to think that this is all overhyped and that in essence the economic and social changes that we face as a result of the spread of robots and AI will either be nugatory, or a continuation of the sort of thing that we have experienced pretty much continuously since the Industrial Revolution and, as such, will be profoundly beneficial to humanity. Some see the specters unleashed by fetid speculation about the implications of AI as reminiscent of the gigantic fuss about the Y2K computer bug which, in the end, came to naught. Five visions of the future So, to put it mildly, this is a far from settled issue. The conflicting views about our fate in a robot-and AI-dominated future can be pithily summarized as follows: • Nothing different. • Radically bad. • Radically good. • Catastrophic. • The key to eternal life. Charting a path through these different possible futures is the main purpose of this book.


pages: 404 words: 113,514

Atrocity Archives by Stross, Charles

airport security, anthropic principle, Berlin Wall, brain emulation, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, defense in depth, disintermediation, experimental subject, glass ceiling, haute cuisine, hypertext link, Khyber Pass, mandelbrot fractal, Menlo Park, MITM: man-in-the-middle, NP-complete, the medium is the message, Y2K, yield curve

"Dechlorinating the Moderator" is a science fiction story about a convention that has all the trappings of a science fiction convention, but is (because this is the future) a science fact convention, of desktop and basement high-energy fundamental physics geeks and geekettes. Apart from its intrinsic fun, the story conveys the peculiar melancholy of looking back on a con and realising that no matter how much of a good time you had, there was even more that you missed. (All right: as subtle shadings of emotion go this one is a bit low on universality, but it was becoming familiar to me, having just started going to cons.) "Ship of Fools" was about the Y2K problem (which as we all know turned out not to be a problem, but BEGIN_RANT that was entirely thanks to programmers who did their jobs properly in the first place back when only geeks and astronomers believed the twenty-first century would actually arrive END_RANT) and it was also full of the funniest and most authentic-sounding insider yarns about IT I'd ever read. This Stross guy sounded like someone I wanted to meet, maybe at a con.


pages: 347 words: 112,727

Rust: The Longest War by Jonathan Waldman

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, Anton Chekhov, computer age, David Brooks, digital map, Exxon Valdez, Frederick Winslow Taylor, Golden Gate Park, index card, Isaac Newton, Mason jar, pez dispenser, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Works Progress Administration, Y2K

The cost of maintaining those bridges also had much to do with the DOT’s funding of the 2001 study of the nationwide cost of corrosion, which made the cost of salt look like peanuts. Thanks to better design (eliminating areas that hold mud and moisture), galvanized parts, improved primers and paints, and tests in salt mist facilities—giant steam ovens for cars—auto manufacturers got a handle on corrosion more or less around Y2K. Bridges haven’t caught up. As a result, few other agencies are pulled in directions so opposite with such force as the DOT. Yet there are limits to how far it may be stretched. A new car, the agency figures, you can afford; a new plane, it figures, you cannot. At airports, the Federal Aviation Administration prohibits the use of standard chloride-containing highway salts. Instead, airports rely on deicing alternatives like acetates, formates, and urea.


pages: 373 words: 112,822

The Upstarts: How Uber, Airbnb, and the Killer Companies of the New Silicon Valley Are Changing the World by Brad Stone

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Andy Kessler, autonomous vehicles, Ben Horowitz, Boris Johnson, Burning Man, call centre, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, collaborative consumption, East Village, fixed income, Google X / Alphabet X, housing crisis, inflight wifi, Jeff Bezos, Justin.tv, Kickstarter, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Necker cube, obamacare, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, Peter Thiel, race to the bottom, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ruby on Rails, Sand Hill Road, self-driving car, semantic web, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, South of Market, San Francisco, Startup school, Steve Jobs, TaskRabbit, Tony Hsieh, transportation-network company, Travis Kalanick, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, ubercab, Y Combinator, Y2K, Zipcar

A few blocks away, on the seventh floor of a former bank building at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, Christiane Hayashi was planning her next move. As director of Taxis and Accessible Services at the Metropolitan Taxi Agency, Hayashi was the most powerful figure in the city’s highly dysfunctional cab industry. She had worked as a deputy city attorney since graduating from UC Hastings College of the Law and had toiled away in environmental law and Y2K compliance. She was no stranger to San Francisco’s bare-knuckle politics, where rival democratic factions battled incessantly and corruption often bubbled indiscreetly under the surface. A stint in the Department of Elections, where she managed the transition away from punch-card ballots, was particularly grueling. Hayashi and two other lawyers were accused of mismanaging funds and signing false time sheets.


pages: 385 words: 118,314