Vaporized by Robert Tercek: BOOK REVIEW

Vaporized is one of those books that every businessman, digital being, parent, human and robot should read.

VaporizedI first met Rob Tercek in a San Francisco hotel during the CTIA conference and I’ve never forgotten that meeting; I even remember the decor and the angle of the sunlight.

Tercek was talking about Africans playing mobile games and why mobile games publishers (such as my company) weren’t preparing for that market. He was the first person apart from my young self who had talked about that, it was awesome that I could agree with somebody as smart as that.

Since then, Rob has the portfolio career that has allowed him to meet everybody; the smartest people on the planet while I’ve stayed true to reading books, making 50/50 decisions and playing pool in the Hassocks Hotel, my local pub. But I still understand him, and I loved this book.

Moreover, it’s the first e-book I’ve ever read and I found the process fascinating because I read faster than normal. That, however, is probably down to the content I was reading. Rob is a visionary and his idea of the near-future is as certain as anything I’ve read.

At times it’s like reading the scriptwriter and mentor of the Black Mirror series of films, but less dyspotic. Beneath the Cassandra-style warnings lies an optimism that inspires. All industries and creations are being ‘vaporized’ by software, not just jobs, but also companies, governments and even our bodies.

Most of us in the ‘industry’ know that, but Tercek knows more and, a decade on, I still agree with him. That is, apart from books. He’s happy to see the bookshop go, I’m not. I would have enjoyed Vaporized even more if I’d read it as a hardback. Even so, I cannot recommend this highly enough. It’s the Great American Tech Novel.

US gangs use social media to daunt, flaunt and taunt

This post is by regular contributor and US hip-hop technology legend Mike Johns, who tweets here and is heading up iAM DIGITAL: MUSIC & TECH Symposium at this year’s CTIA

Instagram gangbangingWe’ve seen how social media has played an important role in creating cause awareness, inciting revolutions, and toppling Government regimes.

However, who could have ever imagined that these powerful tools would be used by US gangs across America? In cities such as New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, gang members often use Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media outlets to spread vitriolic ‘diss’ messages and encourage rival gangs to respond. Continue reading

Thinking of going to New Orleans and CTIA? You can now go for free…

North America’s biggest wireless trade show CTIA takes place from May 8-10th May and this year is in the wonderful New Orleans.

Since Katrina the city depends on conferences such as CTIA to help its economy, so this publication recommends you help the city and attend the show.

To that end, Monty’s Outlook can offer you a special Platinum code for free entry to the show. This also means the money you save can be spent in the bars of Bourbon Street… or in other ways you prefer… nudge-nudge, wink-wink

To take advantage of this just click here and enter Monty4CTIA for your free pass. This offer ends at midnight on May 1st so be quick.

American Idol gave it life, but the mobile web has killed the US text messaging star

I don’t know about you, but I don’t text as much as I used to. In fact, the list of contacts on my mobile is becoming less important than the chosen people I DM on Twitter.

It’s a cultural movement I wasn’t expecting as I used to text like a demon. Maybe I don’t have any real friends any more, maybe I’m a digital refugee who can only operate in a binary universe, maybe I should stay in more. Continue reading

Why European (and African) mobile companies should come to CTIA this year

As many readers of this blog will know, CTIA is the North American equivalent of Mobile World Congress and takes place twice a year, once in the ‘fall’ and once in the spring. It’s the biggest mobile trade show in the world.

Unlike MWC, which will be in Barcelona for the next four years, CTIA takes place in different US cities, so over the years it has been in San Francisco, New Orleans, Atlanta and this year be in San Diego. It’s a great show and I’ve been going for years; it’s about the only time I ever go shopping. Continue reading