Nov 23, 2011

Time to stop worshipping stirrers of stone soup

Last month I was in Kiev, speaking at a conference focused on entrepreneurs. I wanted to give a talk that would be of general interest but also concrete. So I started with one of my favorite parables. It is a familiar folk tale. A ...

Oct 13, 2011

'Jobs factor' made Apple's closed strategy work

Normally, you need a distinctive first name not to need a last name, but in this — as in everything that he did — Steve Jobs was different. He was always just “Steve.” In the personal-computing business — which moved from the bulky Apple ...

Aug 30, 2011

'Protection racket' for Net domain names

The Internet’s domain-name system (DNS) was formalized in the late 1990s by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). I was ICANN’s founding chairman, and we more or less followed the rules of trademarks, with an overlay of “first come, first served.” ...

May 24, 2011

Disorganized dreams of Egyptian democrats

The Internet is an extraordinarily powerful tool. It has changed how we do business, how we do politics, and even how we change our leaders — at least some of the time. But the ease with which we now communicate, the efficiencies we take ...

May 4, 2011

Programming people to be better employees

In theory, it is hard to think of any nobler computer service than the typical “Help Wanted” board. It helps people find work that fulfills their potential, and it helps employers find people who can use their infrastructure (whether machines, office equipment or a ...

Jan 27, 2011

Watershed moment for U.S. space exploration

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — More than 50 years ago (1957), the Soviets launched the world’s first orbiting satellite, beating the United States into space. For Americans, the “Sputnik moment” was a wakeup call that pushed the U.S. to increase investment in technology and science ...

Dec 18, 2010

WikiLeaks' flawed answer to a flawed world

NEW YORK — Long ago, I wrote about the Internet pioneer Julf Helsingius, who ran a precursor to WikiLeaks called anon.penet.fi. As I said then: “Anonymity in itself should not be illegal. There are enough good reasons for people to be anonymous that it ...

Nov 27, 2010

Dangerous myth of the hero entrepreneur

NEW YORK — Earlier this month, I sat on a panel in Monte Carlo, a hot spot of the establishment, discussing the question, “Why can’t Europe be more like the U.S.?” The formal name of the panel was “Silicon Envy: Will Europe ever build ...

Jul 28, 2010

Living life by the numbers

NEW YORK — Recently I learned that I don’t have cancer. My doctor called and said, “I have some good news!” Fortunately, we were in the middle of a fire drill in my office at the time, so no one noticed as I blinked ...