How many of you recall that EF Hutton commercial that started off by saying, "When EF Hutton talks, people listen". The same thought can be applied to Howard Rheingold.
Rheingold is veteran technology watcher and well-publised futurist. He has identified yet another transformative technology. In 'Smart Mobs' he describes in vivid detail how large, geographically dispersed groups connected only by thin threads of communications techology, such as text messaging, e-mail, cell phones, two-way pagers, and web sites, can draw together in the blink of an eye, groups of people together for a collective cause.
From various parts of the world, Rheingold, has gathered stories about engineers and inventors of all sorts, working feverishly to create ever-smaller and more powerful devices that contribute to this new paradigm.
In this book,Rheingold points out examples of Smart Mobs such as the swarms of demonstrators who used mobile phones, Web sites, laptops and handheld computers to coordinate their protests against the World Trade Organization in November of 1999.
Rheingold shows a concern of smart mobs other than describing the weath of new communications technology that is available and coming. He is also concerned about the social, political, economic, environmental and even genetic consequences of the ever-expanding and more intrusive plethora of multidirectional communications technology.
This book is a must read.