Predicting Technology

Part of the theory about predicting the direction of technology in this book builds upon work done by Clayton Christensen, a professor of business at Harvard University. Christensen has written many books about a topic called “disruptive technology.” Part of his work also includes the topic of how “sustaining innovations,” are different than disruptive technology.

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Part of the theory explained in this book is based upon a biological metaphor of how new species (products) evolve, that is applied to small technology firms that operate in a distinct economic region, which looks like an ecosystem.

It turns out that emerging product technologies often find their first applications in new or marginal regional markets, similar to how a new species originates at the extreme boundaries of a biological environment

To take advantage of innovation that results from the introduction of a new product, incumbent firms need to learn how to address a new market. Just like existing species need to learn how to compete with the new species.