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The Change Function: Why Some Technologies Take Off and Others Crash and Burn
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The Change Function: Why Some Technologies Take Off and Others Crash and Burn

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  94 ratings  ·  8 reviews
The ultimate guide to predicting winners and losers in high technology

Pip Coburn became famous for writing some of the liveliest reports on Wall Street. He quoted everyone from Machiavelli to HAL, Anaïs Nin to Yoda, Einstein to Gandhi. But along with the quirky writing, he consistently delivered sharp insights into technology trends and helped investors pick stocks with
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published June 22nd 2006 by Portfolio Hardcover
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Jeff Greason
Jan 01, 2021 rated it really liked it
Books like this, purporting to indicate which technologies will and won't be successful, tend to age poorly; they are either snapshots in time (current fashions projected forward), lessons from "the last war" (what caused the last crash), or trivial.

This book suffers a bit from the "last war" (the dot-bomb) but I think on careful reading, there are valuable lessons here. The central thesis, that perceived pain of customer adoption of a new technology is a powerful barrier and that the value must
Dec 02, 2019 rated it liked it
I don’t fully agree with the authors scale and measure to confidently say that a technology will succeed or not .
The sample selected by him look biased to what he wants to think .

Social media networks are live examples of technology being successful even if there is no absolute crisis.

They hypotheses stand somewhere and somewhere it fails.
Muhammad Khan
Given that this book is now more than 2 years old, and with the pace of technology as we know it, some of the use cases presented are not as relevant as it was when the book was being put together. However, the author has put into words, what I would've thought is obvious, but apparently isn't as obvious - because he proves how technology providers have kept missing the boat...that change is hard to accept, overall user experience is key to success; that technologists, engineers and programmers ...more
Paul Chavez
Nov 18, 2007 rated it really liked it
The basic premise of this book is useful. Coburn explains simply why people make changes in the products they use. He then explains many positive and negative case studies. But the wrap up at the end where he lists a series of questions that an investor might ask someone who is pitching a new product is very useful and his tie-in to Alan Cooper and Jef Raskin (a couple of my favorites) was a very pleasant surprise.
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Amazing book evaluating why certain ideas make it into a market success and other don't. It also introduces an amazing, genuinly customer-focused methodology for predicting market success of innovations. ...more
Mar 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great insight into why seemingly sure-thing products fail. Love this insight: To make a change, the pain of making the change must be less than the pain the current state is causing.
A introduction into why some technologies catch on like wildfire, and others don't... - it's all about the user experience! ...more
Leftie Friele
Aug 22, 2007 rated it liked it
Great book which provides good insight when working with technology and making products relying on technological changes.
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