Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $4.79 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story Paperback – January 6, 2014
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Book recommendations, author interviews, editors' picks, and more. Read it now.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Frequently bought together
- Boston Globe
“Remarkable. . . . Clark proves to be a character as enthralling as any in American fiction or non-fiction. . . . [A] great story . . . with prose that ranges from the beautiful to the witty to the breathtaking.”
- Fred Moody, Wall Street Journal
“A splendid, entirely satisfying book, intelligent and fun and revealing and troubling in the correct proportions, resolutely skeptical but not at all cynical.”
- Kurt Andersen, New York Times Book Review
About the Author
- Item Weight : 9.9 ounces
- Paperback : 272 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0393347818
- ISBN-13 : 978-0393347814
- Product Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.3 inches
- Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company; 1st Edition (January 6, 2014)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #42,448 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Explaining the how's, why's, and differences between the old way of doing things and the new (or new new) way of doing things can be tricky, because it assumes you have some understanding of how the old (or old old) way of doing things works. I'm not a Wall Street investor, but I felt not only capable of understanding Lewis' framework of explanation, but I felt like I could extrapolate deeper meaning from it. He manages to paint fascinating pictures of all the people involved in the pursuit of the new new thing and how their constellation manages to orbit itself as it becomes standard operating practice in the growing tech industry.
I also felt like I could better understand how the minds of billionaire "executives" (as Lewis points out, Jim Clark wasn't exactly sure how to describe exactly what it was he does) and how they anticipate the next new new thing, why it interests them, and how quickly it starts to lose their interest. If you can understand someone like Clark, you can start to understand the industry.
Does that that mean I wouldn't recommend it? No! I still liked it, and would recommend it as a "good" read, I was disappointed because I expect a "great" read from this author.
One reviewer felt that Jim Clark was deified and no negative information was given but I disagree with that assessment. I saw Clark as a man with above average talent who learned to game the system to become super rich. It is sad to see someone with lots of money...all he will ever need for several lifetimes...who can't be content because he "needs" to have a larger number.
Although I doubt commercial interest warrants, this book could use an updated epilogue, particularly surrounding Healtheon/WebMD, which I have to think does not at all match the original vision.
As usual, very well written and engaging; always the case with Lewis. I didn't find Jim Clark as sympathetic as I think I was intended to, and as a result some of the chapters focused on him personally (especially his flying a helicopter, and sailing his boat across the Atlantic) dragged a bit.
Lewis is a master of engaging character portrayals, with intoxicating and hyperbolic prose. He plays objective narrator throughout, sometimes interfering with the plot, but holds no punches in describing Clark's maniacal quest for wealth.
In the end, there is a wonderful demonstration that wealth doesn't bring happiness with it. From p. 258: "Why do people perpetually create for themselves the condition for their own dissatisfaction?" -- an retort to Clark's statement that "Once I have more money than Larry Ellison, I'll be satisfied". A few years earlier, satisfaction for Clark amounted to a measly $10 million on the bank; that number mushroomed to $1 billion.
Throughout, Lewis conveys the feeling of the Internet bubble of the late 90s; the wealthy, controlling venture capitalists; the insanely-priced IPOs for companies that had no clue how to make money. So yes, that's all a bunch of old old things by now, and if I were looking for a historical account of that period, the book would be worth only 4 stars; yet, I was going for the portrait of Clark, and for those who lived through it, the book is a good behind the scenes look at the creation of Silicon Graphics, Netscape, and Healtheon.