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Next: The Future Just Happened

Next: The Future Just Happened

3.3 9
by Michael Lewis

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The New York Times bestseller. "His book is a wake-up call at a time when many believe the net was a flash in the pan."—BusinessWeek

With his knowing eye and wicked pen, Michael Lewis reveals how the Internet boom has encouraged changes in the way we live, work, and think. In the midst of one of the greatest status revolutions in the


The New York Times bestseller. "His book is a wake-up call at a time when many believe the net was a flash in the pan."—BusinessWeek

With his knowing eye and wicked pen, Michael Lewis reveals how the Internet boom has encouraged changes in the way we live, work, and think. In the midst of one of the greatest status revolutions in the history of the world, the Internet has become a weapon in the hands of revolutionaries. Old priesthoods are crumbling. In the new order, the amateur is king: fourteen-year-olds manipulate the stock market and nineteen-year-olds take down the music industry. Unseen forces undermine all forms of collectivism, from the family to the mass market: one black box has the power to end television as we know it, and another one may dictate significant changes in our practice of democracy. With a new afterword by the author. 

Editorial Reviews

In 1989, Michael Lewis snagged the country's attention with Liar's Poker, his raucous account of the fast-paced, double-dealing bond market and the S&L crisis it caused. In the balloon-thin Internet boom, he has once again found a subject worthy of his high-spirited cynicism. Lewis's writing is crisp and his examples of 14-year-old stock market manipulators and outlandish IPOs cry to be read aloud. Excellent beach read.
New York Observer
[C]onsistently smart, and its highpoints are among the high points of Lewis' writing life.
A wake-up call at a time when many believe the net was a flash in the pan.
Next does not come too late to the crash-and-burn Internet book fest. It comes just in time—at the speed of a falling safe.
Lewis is a master of the far from obvious, giving a jargonectomy to big concepts.
Robert D. Hof
His book is a wake-up call at a time when many believe the net was a flash in the pan.
Polly Labarre
Michael Lewis has a knack for tapping the business zeitgeist.
Fast Company
Rob Mitchell
[U]nderstated humor and keen-edged sociological observations...
Boston Herald
Richard Pachter
A fascinating view of the future of global commerce, which, clearly, is well underway.
Miami Herald
Entertainment Weekly
A thoughtful and entertaining look at the rise and fall of our new Internet-driven economy.
William C. Gibson
Lewis has many good and useful things to say in this book, and he says them in an easy and witty way.
New Orleans Times-Picayune
Jon Katz
[P]rovocative and entertaining....Lewis is a gifted journalist and a smart observer.
Wall Street Journal
Boris Kachka
Don't miss his last chapter: "The Unabomber Had a Point.
New York
[Lewis] has a natural talent for spinning hilarious scenes and uncovering wicked details.
Alden Mudge
[S]wift, sharp, often-funny narratives...compelling.
Christopher Caldwell
[C]onsistently smart, and its highpoints are among the high points in Lewis's writing life.
New York Observer
USA Today
Next does not come too late to the crash-and-burn Internet book fest. It comes just in time—at the speed of a falling safe.
Publishers Weekly
Putting an engaging and irreverent spin on yesterday's news, Lewis (Liar's Poker; The New, New Thing) declares that power and prestige are up for grabs in this look at how the Internet has changed the way we live and work. Probing how Web-enabled players have exploited the fuzzy boundary between reality and perception, he visits three teenagers who have assumed startling roles: Jonathan Lebed, the 15-year-old New Jersey high school student who made headlines when he netted $800,000 as a day trader and became the youngest person ever accused of stock-market fraud by the SEC; Markus Arnold, the 15-year-old son of immigrants from Belize who edged out numerous seasoned lawyers to become the number three legal expert on AskMe.com; and Daniel Sheldon, a British 14-year-old ringleader in the music-file-sharing movement. Putting himself on the line, Lewis is freshest in his reportage, though he doesn't pierce the deeper cultural questions raised by the kids' behavior. As a financial reporter tracing the development of innovative industries like black box interactive television and interactive political polling from their beginnings as Internet brainstorms, Lewis reminds readers that the twin American instincts to democratize and commercialize intertwine on the Internet, and can only lead to new business. In the past, Lewis implies, industry insiders would simply have shut out eager upstarts, yet today insiders, like AOL Time Warner, allow themselves "to be attacked in order to later co-opt their most ferocious attackers and their best ideas." (July 30) Forecast: Lewis's track record, a major media campaign and a 12-city author tour through techie outposts will make this hard to ignore. As abreezy summer read, it's fun enough, but those looking for profound business insights will be disappointed. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Christopher Caldwell - New York Observer
“[C]onsistently smart, and its highpoints are among the high points of Lewis' writing life.”

Product Details

Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
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Barnes & Noble
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File size:
224 KB

Meet the Author

Michael Lewis, is the best-selling author of Liar’s Poker, Moneyball, The Blind Side, and Flash Boys. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
October 15, 1960
Place of Birth:
New Orleans, LA
Princeton University, B.A. in Art History, 1982; London School of Economics, 1985

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3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
i think this book showed that the author had no idea what he was doing. he was picking his nose and trying to write at the same time. i think that is stupid and he needs to try again. thank you
Guest More than 1 year ago
This writer needs to just sit back and be Tabitha Soren's husband. This book really struck me as "I have to write a follow-up to The New New Thing ..what other subject can I exploit?" He really is more negative than he needs to be. I thought journalists were supposed to be (or at least appear to be) unbiased! Keep the subject matter, take out his comments, and you've got a better book than you have here. Maybe the BBC should have just used their data to write their own book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Michael Lewis found some really interesting people to talk to in his quest to characterize the social impacts of the internet. However, in almost every story, his elitist perspectives on the situations or motives of these people eclipsed most of my enjoyment. (A great is example is how brutal he is to Bill Joy.) On top of this, the thesis is pretty shaky at best and is not argued with any real evidence. The argument goes something like: the typically young outsiders rebel against the system only to make a new insider system to rebel against... lather, rinse, repeat. The anecdotes are supportive of this thesis, but he just doesn't back his ideas up with anything more than these admittedly amusing stories. I really would've preferred just reading the stories with less pontification and social commentary.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Through Michael Lewis' research, we can see that the internet is truly a Wild Wild West. No longer is it all about making money, but about expressing opinion and fighting the establishment, at least until the outside becomes the establishment.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As good as his others. Entertaining look at the dot com debacle. Nice diversion from the other books I usually read. Worth the time out.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Lewis continues to capture the social consequences of current public events in a highly readable fashion. As he did in Liar's Poker and others, he observes society at large and analyzes the inner workings of the most important ongoing changes. His writing gives great insight into the next 5-15 years of socio-economic development related to technology in the U.S..
Guest More than 1 year ago
Old elites beware! Your time is up! Become the new elite today! That's the message of this intriguing, fascinating, and thought-provoking look at what's already happened on the Internet. I not only thought that this is the best book about the social effects of the Internet, I also think it is by far Michael Lewis's best work. This book deserves many more than five stars as a result. The original idea was simple. There are all of these people making a big splash on the Internet as individuals. Let's go meet them in person and find out what's really going on. Believe me, it's different from what you read in the newspapers or saw on television. With the aid of a researching crew from the BBC, Mr. Lewis found that the cutting edge of the Internet revolution was going on with 11-14 year olds. Soon, it will probably drift lower in age. Because the Internet lets you play on a equal footing and assume any identity you choose, youngsters with guts and quick minds can take on major roles. Usually, their parents have no clue until adults or major authority figures start arriving on their doorstep challenging what the youngster is doing or seeking personal advice. The core of the book revolves around the stories of Jonathan Lebed who used chat room commentaries to help drive his $8,000 stake into over $800,000 in less than three years, Marcus in Perris, California who became Askme.com's leading criminal law expert based on his watching of court TV shows, and Justin Frankel who became an important developer of Gnutella for filesharing while having trouble getting an education in school. Mr. Lewis makes the point that these youngsters weren't doing anything that their elders don't do in other forums. Yet the established authorities deeply resented and challenged them. Mr. Lewis suggests that the old elites 'get a life.' Their day is over. He uses the analogy of his father's refusal to adapt his law practice to the methods of personal injury lawyers using billboards and television ads to show this is how the existing elites always respond . . . by condemning and trying to ignore the new. At the same time, Mr. Lewis raises several important questions that will stay with you. After having been king of the hill for your 15 minutes of fame at 15, how will you feel about the rest of your life as an also-ran? His portrayal of Danny Hillis's project to create the 10,000 year clock captures that point very well. He also lampoons Bill Joy's arguments that the Unabomber had it right that we (the existing elites) need to constrain technology. The basic point is that economic and social effectiveness will rest on the foundation of how effective you can be rather than who you are, what degrees you have, what age you are, or who you know. In other words, the Internet has added another degree of leveling to our society. Surely, that's good. I'm a little more optimistic than Mr. Lewis about the implications. I think that many people will find the lower barriers to entry provide them the chance to develop themselves more than would otherwise happen. What they learn as youngsters can be used in new ways on broader canvases later in life. For example, Jonathan will probably become a great marketing guru. Marcus has the seeds of a marvelous counselor, attorney, or columnist in him. Justin will probably create masterful new software structures that will make sharing easier and more effective. Those are potentially beautiful futures for these young men. Child prodigies have always been with us. The lessons for those based in the Internet will be the same as for those who did it in music or the motion pictures. You have to keep developing yourself, have sound values, and prepare for an adult role that you enjoy and are good at. I do feel for the parents of these young people. They are the ones with the big challenge! After you finish enjoying this wonderful book, I suggest that you think about where you can pursue lifelong