The Strategy of The Modern Digital Revolution - Rebalancing Machines, Platforms, and Crowds


I've just finished reading "Harnessing Our Digital Future - Machine Platform Crowd" by Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson - best selling authors of the second machine age.

The tree essential aspects of the modern digital revolution: the rebalancing of the minds and machines, of products and platforms, and the core and the crowd.
  1. Digital machines, in the form of everything from self-driving cars to drones to 3D printers to neural networks, are blowing past their previous limitations and assuming new roles.
  2. Online platforms are changing cost structures, improving how supply meets demand, and creating formidable new competitors in industries ranging from recorded music to urban transportation to computer hardware to group exercises.
  3. Crowds that assemble on the internet have built operating systems and encyclopedias, repeatedly beat the experts in their fields, provided funding for many projects, and even reinvented money.
The economics of digital are bringing new possibilities to the business world by using machines where minds prevailed, using platforms where products prevailed, and using  decentralization (the crowd) where centralized core company management prevailed.

Brynjolfsson and McAfee reiterate that minds, products, and the core remain essential and can often be augmented, rather than replaced, by machines, platforms, and the crowd. The overall lesson is the tremendous value of rebalancing between elements of the traditional economy and elements of the digital economy.


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