Summary of The Second Machine Age

Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies

W.W. Norton, more...

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The Second Machine Age book summary
The computer revolution will produce greater change than the Industrial Revolution.


8 Overall

7 Importance

8 Innovation

8 Style


Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee of the MIT Center for Digital Business address the impact of digital technologies, moving smoothly from broad perspectives and historical syntheses to specific examples from contemporary scientific and business activity. The authors describe the changes digital technologies bring and show their historical roots, analyze their causes and explain their implications. They recognize the difficulties of predicting technological change, though their section on the future is not quite on par with the brilliance of the rest of this absorbing overview. getAbstract recommends their insights to anyone seeking greater understanding of the social and economic impact of digital technologies.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why recent history marks only the first stages of the computer revolution
  • How digital technologies change society
  • How to respond to these changes


Technology and Human History
What is the most influential development in history? The Industrial Revolution. At present, you are living through a second, comparable revolution. The Industrial Revolution changed how people used their bodies to perform physical labor. This current revolution...
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About the Authors

Erik Brynjolfsson, director of the MIT Center for Digital Business and Andrew McAfee, a researcher at the Center and author of Enterprise 2.0, co-authored Race Against the Machine.

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