Gutenberg the Geek (Kindle Single) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 20 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
"This was a time of change and disruption -- which is like planting season for entrepreneurs."
"Don't today's entrepreneurs dream for a fraction of Gutenberg's impact? He was the inventor of history's greatest platform."
A good quick read, stylistically somewhere between a Wikipedia entry and an article in WIRED.
While I've read cursory attempts at such comparisons, Jeff's writing about Gutenberg was so fascinating, that I emailed him to ask where I could find more on the topic. Not only did he email me back some suggestions, he sent me a 5,000 word document he'd written about Gutenberg that had not made it into the book.
So I was thrilled to see that Jeff had self-published, Gutenberg the Geek as a Kindle Single ebook of 6,800 word, using this previously unpublished material to tell a completely different story that reminds us how history reveals to us patterns that never stop repeating themselves. (My only disappointment: He should have named the ebook "What Would Gutenberg Do?" in reference to his previous book, What Would Google Do? )
I found Gutenberg the Great similar to another one of my favorite Kindle Singles,Leonardo and Steve: The Young Genius Who Beat Apple to Market by 800 Years, a 14,000-word volume written by Stanford math professor Kevin Devlins, As Jarvis does with comparing Gutenberg and Silicon Valley startup guys, Devins compares the role Leonardo of Pisa (we know him as Fibonacci) with the role Steve Jobs played in introducing personal computing to our era.
In Jarvis' compact and concise book, he weaves in references and comparisons of Gutenberg's innovation and entrepreneurship to today's era of new technology and new business models built on that technology.
I feel certain no one else has written a book of any length that finds parallels in how Gutenberg and the founders of Airbnb.com funded their startups -- but it's that kind of informative, and fun, comparison that enables this to be an informative, but quick, read.
What i love about this title is that we get a great introduction to a man who shaped our world possible more than just about anyone else yet is somewhat forgotten. Sure just about everyone knows his name and what he did but the true importance of his achievement is dulled by the fact it changed so much about our lives. It is virtually impossible to think what the world would be like without Gutenberg yet he is essentially a footnote in history.
My only real issue with this book is that it is both too short and has an odd structure. It flows from topic to topic in an almost stream of consciousness way which leads to many points being repeated more than necessary and makes the overall point of the book a little less clear.
Still for less than a dollar this is well worth your time and money.
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