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Customer Review

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Prosuming, De-Massification, Reversible Globalization, Biotechnology and Nanotechnology, 28 Sept. 2007
This review is from: Revolutionary Wealth: How It Will Be Created and How It Will Change Our Lives (Paperback)
Futurism is fun! Alvin and Heidi Toffler have been proving that for a long time as they informed us about Future Shock (the accelerating pace of life) and The Third Wave (knowledge-driven economies). The essence of the task is to take straws in the wind and project them forward to ask "what if?" thus and so were to accelerate. As a result, the use of such thinking is to inspire us . . . rather than precisely project the future. Entrepreneurs will take some of these insights and create trillion dollar industries. Will you be one of them? Perhaps not, unless you read the book.

For most people, the book will be a wake-up call in a number of areas. If you regularly read about emerging trends . . . especially in technology, globalization, and finance, you won't find that much new here in terms of trends. You will find interesting perspectives on those trends that may differ from what you've read before.

If you don't have the luxury to immerse yourself in trends, this book will be a revelation that you'll enjoy.

For me, the new perspectives in the book came in the following areas:

1. Globalization in terms of economic intertwining is not inevitably destined to increase. In fact, many trends point to the possibility of a reversal of increasing globalization at some future point. That was an interesting thought to consider which has large investing consequences.

2. Economic statistics are falling further and further behind in measuring what's really going on in production and consumption . . . particularly as people produce and consume more for themselves. A lot of our economic surprises probably relate to changes in what isn't being measured.

3. Emerging market countries are increasingly trying to compete at the cutting edge of the most advanced knowledge-based industries like nanotechnology and biotechnology rather than being satisfied to provide low-cost labor and other physical resources.

4. Poverty is more likely to be eased through sharing knowledge resources inexpensively with the poor so they can improve their own lot than by doing more for the poor in a physical sense (the traditional aid approach).

You'll probably take different food for thought from the book. Rich in examples and optimism, you'll find plenty to stimulate your mind and your conversations for months to come.

To me, the book would have been stronger if the Tofflers had tried to forge ahead further into the implications of current trends. They usually just inched a few years ahead in looking at issues and potential.
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Donald Mitchell
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