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The Third Wave

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  2,487 ratings  ·  151 reviews
The Third Wave makes startling sense of the violent changes now battering our world. Its sweeping synthesis casts fresh light on our new forms of marriage and family, on today's dramatic changes in business and economics. It explains the role of cults, the new definitions of work, play, love, and success. It points toward new forms of twenty-first-century democracy.
Unknown Binding, 544 pages
Published January 1st 1980 by William Morrow & Company
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Dan's In short, I think it's what's happening today

Data mining/ target groups/ data analysis

Vote manipulating..(like what happened with Trump's latest elect…more
In short, I think it's what's happening today

Data mining/ target groups/ data analysis

Vote manipulating..(like what happened with Trump's latest election results)
I think the company behind it was called. c ambridge analytics(less)

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Ahmad Sharabiani
The Third Wave, Alvin Toffler

The Third Wave is a book published in 1980 by Alvin Toffler. It is the sequel to Future Shock, published in 1970, and the second in what was originally likely meant to be a trilogy that was continued with Powershift: Knowledge, Wealth and Violence at the Edge of the 21st Century in 1990. A new addition, Revolutionary Wealth, was published, however, in 2006 and may be considered as a major expansion of The Third Wave. Toffler's book describes the transition in develop
May 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first wave (Agrarian Society) lasted for thousands of years; the second wave (Industrial society) lasted for close to 300 years and now the third wave("information society")- started in 1960s in U.S.- has more or less spread across the whole globe. Even though the book is written in 1980s, most part of it is still valid today. What i really liked about it is how the author tries to interconnect seemingly unrelated events in different fields like tech, sociology, politics, environment & econo ...more
Feb 11, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although it was published in 1980 before home computers, e-mail, and the internet, Mr. Toffler helps make sense of the transitions we faced moving from the First Wave (Agricultural Age) to the Second Wave (Industrial Age) and now as we move into the Third Wave (Information Age). He covers topics as broad as technology, politics and gender roles and how each of these is impacted by the Third Wave.

There are entire chapters that I disagree with, such as reasons given for the disintegration of the
Sep 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It took me 13 years to read this book. Was worth it. Toffler is an amazing synthesiser who brings together different ideas from disciples to create a syncretic whole! Written in 1980, the book misses out on the biggest of all third wave technologies- The Internet. Yet, the book is amazingly perceptive, insightful and far sighted. A veritable Magnum Opus!
Ravindra Dewan
Aug 25, 2010 added it
Recommends it for: Everybody
Recommended to Ravindra by: None
I read this book in 1983 just by accident and it is THE greatest book that I have ever read. How close was Toffler in understanding history in such a grand sweep.
Gary  Beauregard Bottomley
Extreme centrist never see color or diversity. Toffler is a privileged extreme centrist living with rose colored glasses (‘la vie en rose’) hypothesizing a third wave while visualizing the future while always staying within the confines of his second wave, the industrial wave, motifs dominated by his privileged identity.

Fundamental change was happening the day this book came out in 1980 but the author doesn’t see beyond his own ‘industrialeality’, that is, the ‘industrial reality’, a clever neo
Jun 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: social
Again, a book written some time ago (24 years), so how does it stand up?

In one section, Toffler speaks of how the customer "will become so integrated into the production process that we find it . . . difficult to tell . . . who is the producer." So many Internet niche marketers (today’s most popular and fastest growing business model) would read this and agree. It's fascinating to see such precision in understanding a device some 20 years ago that itself is only 10 years old. Today’s customer I
Mr. J
Aug 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book shines in two main aspects .

1. It presents an extremely coherent and simple explanation to every relevant aspect in today's societies , from economics to politics and from arts to technology. It helps the reader to understand why things are the way they are.

2. It also relies heavily on a future oriented language , which would have been a perfect recipe for anachronism and falsity, but surprisingly enough , many of the book's predictions actually end up happening , with many others that
Oana Popescu
Dec 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
2019, still a great read!
Reading this book should be mandatory for students, researchers, anyone interested in history. The knowledge it imparts is impressive, in keeping multidimensional perspectives on well, almost everything. It is for every person to read, students, teachers, sales people, IT people, doctors and so on.
The amount of research and information it presents is awe-inspiring, as far as technology is concerned, as well as family life, communications, politics. Topics I've seldom d
khashayar XerXes
1970...future shock
smthing is gonna change,it will change in the fastest way it could!
here he discuss the effect that the rate may cause,& leave
the tehem of the "change" 4 his next book to discuss!

1980...third wave
he define us the chaneg we r facing or going to face in future decades in details

1990...power shift
this change "third wave" will affect the basics of distribution of the meaning of the "power" in society!
Ryan Holiday
Jul 05, 2012 rated it liked it
In the first wave, power came from violence or force. In the second, the Industrial Revolution, power came from wealth. Today, it comes from knowledge. The battle for the future is going to be over information. Unfortunately, the book takes 500 pages to say that.

Toffler's other books are stronger and if short on time, can be read in exchange for The Third Wave. However Alvin does write a particularly touching foreword about his wife who has been his long time writing partner.
Brad Acker
May 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing
3 salient waves of major change have greatly transformed civilization: (1) farming (began with invention of agriculture) , (2) factories (the industrial revolution), (3) our electronic information age (characterized by each individual using a personal computer to extend creativity and enhance happiness). As we move from one major wave to another, upheaval can occur.
Ilena Holder
Oct 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My first internet pen pal (a Canadian) recommended this book. Wow is all I can say. toffler was a futurist, Such a neat term. Man was way ahead of his time.
Paul Spence
Peering into the future is the best way of understanding the past and the present. But what is even more revealing than a view of the future is to go back and look at somebody’s attempt to reveal the future some years ago. What did they get right and what did they get wrong? And what does that tell us about the unfolding nature of reality? This week I look at one of the best ever attempts at futurology — Alvin Toffler’s seminal 1980 book, The Third Wave.

His thesis is easily stated. There have be
In The Third Wave, Alvin Toffler splits human development into three stages: the agricultural period, or First Wave; the industrial period, or Second Wave; and the post-industrial period, or Third Wave. This book mainly focuses on the latter two, comparing and contrasting the two stages. Toffler believes that moving into the Third Wave is the cause of many of the political and economic problems that we see today, a growing pain of sorts. According to Toffler's picture of this newest stage of hu ...more
Terry Cornell
I read Toffler's book 'Future Shock' in college as research for a marketing class project. At the time it was a fairly accurate prediction of some changes in technology and our society. I had bought 'The Third Wave' quite sometime ago, and finally got around to reading it. Published in the '80s, it might seem dated in some regards, but interesting to see what has resulted since. Basically Toffler's concept is that man moved from an agrarian society (first wave) to an industrial society (second w ...more
Sep 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
Read many years ago. Interesting as he describes how life, culture, economy, politics--everything changes as these "waves" of progress occur. We are currently in the Third Wave--going from an industrial economy to a technical/computerized wave. He states that the change-over years are always tumultuous because you have a faction of individuals not prepared/educated to move forward. We can see where industrial cities like Detroit are having difficulties and unemployment because either these compa ...more
Alexander Temerev
Jul 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I do not agree with most of the explanations in this book. Mr. Toffler himself at one point confesses that he doesn't know why Third Wave phenomena are happening, and when he does offer an explanation, it is overly materialistic and occasionally just plainly Marxist.

However, the book is absolutely brilliant. It is astonishing that it has been written in 1980; it could be written today and become a bestseller. Many things predicted there already happened (communication revolution, breakup of nucl
Faisal Shabbir
I read this book as part of my course at university, suffice it to say usually anything assigned to you for reading is a bore and usually you end up disliking it.

The more I read this book the more it intrigued me, I loved the clarity of vision with which trends in technology, society and human development were charted out.

Unfortunately after 10years that's all I remember looks like I will have to re read this one to refresh my memory.
Sep 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've never read a book as many times as I've read this one. Alvin Toffler has done a good job in predicting the trends over the last 30 years.

I'm exciting to see the breakthroughs that they predicted in the genetics industry in the coming years.
Jun 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
Another read for those who are interested in the economy. I've read it about three times now (one for every wave... hardy-har-har!) and it never ceases to amaze me how on-point Alvin is with his predictions based off of past economic trends.
May 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Great book for near future Especially in developing countries
Ernesto Tomás
Sep 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
best book in The matter of future comunication
Robert Edward Szekely
I originally bought this book in paperback form in 1980 when it came out, but never completed it, which I why I bought the audiobook version. I strongly recommend this as a must-read for every thoughtful and education person who wants to develop some insight into today's world. Toffler talks about three major waves throughout human history: (1) Agricultural; (2) Industrial; (3) Informational. We're currently living at the beginning of Wave 3, and are see the last gasps of Wave 2. Although agricu ...more
May 19, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: media, digitalism
Toffler, writing in 1980, claims that there is an underlying order to the apparent breakdown of order in all parts of modern life, and proceeds to try and describe it in historical terms.

Toffler claims that there are clear points in the history of human civilisation where an entirely new type of civilisation emerged. These changes aren't sudden, but they are profound and fundamentally alter every aspect of human existence once they have been fully realised. Toffler uses the metaphor of a "wave"
Mark Bryant
This was the most important book of my 20s. I read it in early 1981 and it put the whole world into focus for me. I could finally see how the chaos of the late 70s/early 80s was starting to gel. This book hit me like a religious experience. It's been kind of disappointing in the almost 40 years since to see how many things failed to come true (like the end of rush-hour traffic), but it was great at the time to have such a wonderful road map -- even if the destination didn't really exist.
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
This books bring into a totally different perspective into light. One may find it bewildering at first glance but on continuing they would gradually come in terms with the opinions of the book.Since the book is more principle orientated it helps in extrapolating to other constituencies and corporations. A good read to understand contemporary problems.
Filip Meuris
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'm currently rereading old 'predicting' books. This one influenced me greatly as a boy. I was not much looking for the what of his predictions but for the how (he arrived at an idea). One never knows the thinking act can inspire us today. Bottomline, AL pointers for what will happen are here already. Including the knowledge to understand today's chaos.
Diana Pinchuk
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
That was one of the best books I ever read: such high concentration of smart thoughts, such clear structure of all the statements. Each few pages I was stopping amazed: "What an exact predictions he did! The book was written in 1980!"
May 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I guess I avoided this for years because of perceived political ideology often tied to it. Don't do that. Read it. If you liked the insightfulness of Future Shock then prepare to let Toffler go you one better by expanding the Future Shock out into a new wave crashing across society.
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Alvin Toffler was an American writer and futurist, known for his works discussing the digital revolution, communications revolution, corporate revolution and technological singularity. A former associate editor of Fortune magazine, his early work focused on technology and its impact (through effects like information overload.

Accenture, the management consultancy, has dubbed him the third most infl

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“Individuals need life structure. A life lacking in comprehensible structure is an aimless wreck. The absence of structure breeds breakdown.
Structure provides the relatively fixed points of reference we need. That is why, for many people, a job is crucial psychologically, over and above the paycheck. By making clear demands on their time and energy, it provides an element of structure around which the rest of their lives can be organized. The absolute demands imposed on a parent by an infant, the responsibility to care for an invalid, the tight discipline demanded by membership in a church or, in some countries, a political party — all these may also impose a simple structure on life.”
“It does little good to forecast the future of semiconductors or energy, or the future of the family (even one's own family), if the forecast springs from the premise that everything else will remain unchanged. For nothing will remain unchanged. The future is fluid, not frozen. It is constructed by our shifting and changing daily decisions, and each event influences all others.” 8 likes
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