Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Book: Glenn Reynolds' " An Army Of Davids"

I'm doing better finding time to read.  My latest read was Glenn Reynolds' "An Army of Davids: How Markets and Technology Empower Ordinary People to Beat Big Media, Big Government, and Other Goliaths".

The theme of this book was that technology has empowered individuals (the "Davids") to take on the large corporations and governments (the "Goliaths").  This happens to be a premise that I agree with but I don't think Reynolds did a very good job explaining the concept.  
He starts off well enough but before you know it he veers off on a tangent and the book becomes a smorgasbord of geek nirvana inducing technologies.  Chapters covering gaming, nanotechnology, life extension and biotech immortality, commercial space exploration, and the arrival of the singularity take up the last half of the book.  While I understand that some of these technologies help empower the little guy, the way Reynolds presents them seems disjointed and disconnected from the main argument.

Glenn Reynolds is a blogger (instapundit.com).  As soon as I started reading this book I could tell.  There was a very bloggy feel to the writing.  Not bad but it felt slightly less ... polished.  There is even a chapter on good blogging which felt out of place.

If you want an overview of some cool technologies, you may like this book.  If you're looking for an in depth discussion of the power of the individual over the giant corporations and governments, you probably should look somewhere else.  I'd give this book a B-.

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