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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
Full of drama and insider perspective, this business title will wake executives from their tech-age stupor with a revealing look at those masterminding the information economy; from Kodak (facing obsolescence) and Xerox (sterling research but lackluster results) to IBM and Apple, the spectrum of tech companies is dazzling and the personalities behind them is at times unbelievable. Levis, a writer and new media/tech consultant, knows how to cut to the heart of every matter. Examining two companies at a time (Amazon and Webvan, Netscape and AOL, BSkyB and Nokia), he delves into the nuances of useful developments like "disruptive technology" while zipping through biographies of central players, including their dreams for and actual handling of growing companies. Many of these stories come down to a conflict between emerging tech genius and practical management: "iconic entrepreneur" Jim Clark, who formed Silicon Graphics in 1981, "simply wanted to be a one-man force for creative destruction... Who then was actually going to build these businesses, if not the despised professional managers?" Illuminating the ways a healthy balance was struck at contemporary successes like Google, Levis has produced an important and exciting guide to navigating the online business-scape.
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