The Threat | Edge.org

I’ve always loved Michael Schrage’s question: “what do you want your customers to become” as a way of framing innovation, as opposed to the needs you serve. If we think in terms of the superpowers we give them, the human capital we build, it creates a far richer and more meaningful outcome.

Sometimes we forget just how powerful we’ve become:

My concern is that right now you have people whose abilities, consciousness, and whose perception is enormously enhanced by the use of tools.

I began to realize this in 1996 when I first played with AltaVista, the first proper search engine. I was in the process of helping some lobbying of the government on privacy. We wanted to investigate some companies who appeared to be misbehaving. At the end of an afternoon when I’d figured out, using AltaVista, how to find out everything about these companies, about their accounts, their directors, their directors’ hobbies and interests, I realized that with a search engine I had the same kind of power at my fingertips that last year only the Prime Minister had with the security and intelligence agencies to do his bidding.

Source: The Threat | Edge.org

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