The rise of digital technology made this kind of structure untenable.
The Rise of Digital Technology
In the first half of the 20th century, Alfred Sloan created the modern corporation at General Motors. In many ways, it was based on the military. Senior leadership at headquarters would make plans, while managers at individual units would be allocated resources and made responsible for for achieving mission objectives. Read more
In the seven years since IBM’s Watson beat two human champions in the game show Jeopardy, cognitive technologies have gone from a science fiction pipe-dream to a platform for essential business initiatives. Clearly, if you don’t have a plan for cognitive transformation, your chances for survival will be somewhat dim. Read more
None of these were achieved by one person or even one organization.
The Challenges We Face Today
Every era is defined by the problems it tackles. At the beginning of the 20th century, harnessing the power of internal combustion and electricity shaped society. In the 1960s there was the space race. Since the turn of this century, we’ve learned how to decode the human genome and make machines intelligent. Read more
Nevertheless, lately everything seems to be digital.
The Digital Revolution
In recent decades, innovation has become almost synonymous with digital technology. That wasn’t always true, of course. Long before the microchip was invented, we built an industrial economy based on electricity and internal combustion, harnessed the power of the atom and developed life-saving cures. Read more
This human-machine co-evolution will only accelerate.
In 1961, the first minicomputer, called the PDP-1, arrived at the MIT Electrical Engineering Department. It was a revolutionary machine but, as with all things that are truly new and different, no one really knew what to do with it. Lacking any better ideas, a few of the proto-hackers in residence decided to build a game. That’s how Spacewar! was born. Read more