Pub. Date:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Ruling the Waves: From the Compass to the Internet, a History of Business and Politics along the Technological Frontier / Edition 1

Ruling the Waves: From the Compass to the Internet, a History of Business and Politics along the Technological Frontier / Edition 1

by Debora L. Spar
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Beginning with the development of the compass, Ruling the Waves examines a series of technological revolutions that promised, in their time, to transform the world's politics and business. With Debora Spar's gifted storytelling, each chapter reads like an adventure tale as she recounts the histories of the printing press and maps; of the telegraph, radio, and satellite television; of software, encryption, and the advent of digital music. At each of these junctures Spar suggests that invention led to both a wave of commerce and of chaos.
Entrepreneurs such as Samuel Morse and Rupert Murdoch carved new markets from the emerging technology and proclaimed that the old rules no longer applied. And for a while, they were right. But eventually—and inevitably—even cowboys need rules: rules of property, rules of coordination, rules of competition. The erstwhile pioneers thus turn to government, lobbying for order and setting the stage for the next wave of discovery.
A fascinating history of business, Ruling the Waves is also an original, thought-provoking analysis of the parallels between past innovations and inventions and our own tumultuous times.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780156027021
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 01/07/2003
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 412
Product dimensions: 5.62(w) x 8.62(h) x (d)
Age Range: 6 - 9 Years

About the Author

Debora L. Spar is a professor at the Harvard Business School and is the youngest woman in the school's history ever to receive tenure. A political scientist by training, she teaches the politics of international relations there. She lives in Boston with her architect husband and two small sons.

Table of Contents

Prologue: The View from Partenia1
Chapter 1The First Wave23
Chapter 2The Codemakers60
Chapter 3Radio Days124
Chapter 4BSkyB and the New Wave of Television190
Chapter 5Last Stand of the Cypherpunks244
Chapter 6Trusting Microsoft287
Chapter 7Space Music327
Chapter 8Surfing the Barbary Coast367
Selected Bibliography385

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