Now that it is complete, a clear narrative has emerged from the forthcoming book. The Internet, like many readers of the book itself, is a child of the industrial era. Long before digital communications, the steam engine, telegraph pole, and coalmine quickened the pace of the world. Industrialized commerce, communications and war spun the globe ever faster, and increasingly to a centripetal beat. Control in the industrialized world was put at the centre. The furthest reaches of the globe came under the sway of centers of power. Massive urbanization and a flight from the land created monstrous cities in the great nations. Training of workmen, the precise measurement of a pistol barrel’s caliber, mass assembly of automobiles, all were a regimented, standardized in conformity with the centripetal imperative. The industrial revolution created a world of centralization and organized hierarchy. Its defining pattern was a single, central dot to which all strands led. The emerging digital age is different.
The defining pattern of the digital age is the absence of the central dot. In its place a mesh of many points is evolving, each linked by webs and networks. This story is about the death of the center and Continue reading