The book documents how Japan launched the revolution in consumer electronics--often by seizing on technology initially developed in the U.S. and vastly improving it. For instance, it was an American company, RCA, that announced the creation of liquid crystal displays (LCD) in New York in 1968. Another American giant, Hewlett-Packard, pursued the technology and then abandoned it out of frustration by 1980. But Japan's Seiko and Sharp persisted in the development of LCDs: the devices now are now found in everything from watches to calculators and laptops to flat-screen TVs. The book profiles people like Sharp's Sasaki Tadashi, nicknamed "Doctor Rocket" for his boundless energy, and companies like Seiko, which began more than 100 years ago as a maker of clocks and watches. It also offers some insights about the future of such technologies as digital photography. At the same time, We Were Burning provides a historical and cultural context for Japan's incredible technological achievements. The book contains some valuable lessons for U.S. business managers. It's also worthwhile reading for people interested in the technology underpinning modern machines, including compact-disc players, laser printers, and multimedia computers. Johnstone, who has written for New Scientist and Wired and been a journalism fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is convinced that the entrepreneurial spirit of the Japanese people will pull the country back from any economic mess. "In the past, the Japanese have repeatedly demonstrated their resilience-- especially when their backs are against the wall." --Dan Ring --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Bob's comprehensive research and writing style made it easy to read and informative.
One bonus is the fascinating portrayal of leading edge developments at major US labs who then fumbled the transfer to products.
Johnstone weaves this information into a well-written format that reminds one of a good novel.
Johnstone's account of the invention and development of several products on which much of modern technology is based is fascinating, and a useful corrective to myths about the lack... Read morePublished on May 5, 2007 by Arturo DiGenero
Bob Johnstone accomplished the long awaited account of the enormous effort Japanese entrepreneurs have put in innovations in the electronics industry. Read morePublished on December 8, 2003 by R. Beise-Zee
A must read book for all electronics/computer technology professionals/hobbist. Bob's comprehensive research and writing style made it easy to read and informative. Read morePublished on February 14, 2002 by A. Huang
Bookstores in the US are buldging with entertaining and informative "insider" books on Apple Computer, Microsoft, IBM, Xerox PARC etc. Read morePublished on September 16, 2000 by J Gites