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July 12, 2002

Why blogs are a disruptive influence

James Robertson of Column 2 pointed to the John Hiler article on why blogs are a disruptive influence.  I've already blogged the Hiler article, but Robertson's comment that Hiler's article will "make CMS vendors have second thoughts about their business models."  Don't be so sure ...

Robert's comment reminds me of when I worked at Xerox back in the 80's.  I worked on the Xerox Star, which was one of Xerox's attempts to make money on the brilliant work of Xerox PARC.

When the Apple Macintosh came out in '84, we bought one to see whether Apple had "got it."  That Mac sat outside the office of our software development manager.  That first mac didn't have a hard drive. Our reaction was that it wais a toy; we had nothing to worry about.

That's ironic, because around that time, Xerox was getting it's lunch eaten by Japanese copier companies taking over the low end of the copier market.  And that's exactly what the Mac did.  Xerox sold the Star for $15,000 (or more like $100,000 when you added in all the a couple of network servers).  Apple went with what they could get out the door for $2500.  It wasn't much, but what they were able to do for that $2500 kept getting better and better.  Apple defined the market for graphical computers.  Xerox sold off Xerox PARC this year.