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Lessons From The Future

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Lessons From The Future

Making Sense of a Blurred World


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Still an Information Age doubter? Consider this: American Airlines makes more money from its reservations systems than by flying airplanes and Ford makes more money financing cars than selling them.

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Editorial Rating



  • Innovative


This collection of essays links futurist Stan Davis’ previous works with some of his newer ideas about change and commerce. Believing that his ideas (Future Wealth, Blur, Future Perfect, 2020 Vision) have held up, he expands upon them to explain the philosophy he thinks underlies the next 20 years (or "the second half") of the information revolution. He delves into the next era he anticipates, one of even greater consequence - the Bio Economy. He explains not only the rise of biotech, but also the biological or networked economy, where everything is connected to everyone all the time. Moving from theoretical to practical, he advises judging your company’s worth by its predicted rate of growth and change, not by traditional measurements. Then, Davis speculates about the more distant future, post 2050, when cloning, stem-cell research and such transcend theory and join the chaos of our everyday lives. If the future makes you gasp, says read on.


Future Perfect

As Stan Davis maintained in his previous book, Future Perfect, published 10 years ago, the qualities of the universe determine business realities. Thus, your business can be described by the universal properties of time, space and mass. These ideas are now assumed factors in business strategy. For instance, planning requires consideration of speed and time. The speed at which an idea can move from concept to product and into the hands of consumers is a basic measure of success. The factor of time forces a business to question why it should mail information when an e-mail would do and to ask why it should build physical models when computer simulations would serve.

Cyberspace, a term coined by science-fiction writer William Gibson, wasn’t included among those original elements, but it certainly belongs on that list. Cyberspace is built upon data. It is the center of the information revolution, which is the keystone of the current great economic shift.

The core of today’s economy is information technology and, therefore, all businesses "informationalize," no matter what else they do. The information economy means two significant things. First, economic...

About the Author

Stan Davis  is an author and acclaimed public speaker based in Boston, Massachusetts. This is his 11th book. Some of his previous books include Future Wealth, Blur, the landmark Future Perfect, 2020 Vision and Future Perfect, 2020 Vision Monster under the Bed. He is also an independent strategy and management consultant to major corporations and fast growing enterprises, and part-time Senior Research Fellow at Cap Gemini Ernst & Young’s Center for Business Innovation.

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