Friday, May 28, 2010

Forecasting the Future

For the past week or so I've been reading Dan Pink's book Drive. Chapter 1 of the book talks about predicting the future and how the things that motivate us are changing. Dan Pink says that if in 1995 you had been asked to predict which of these two encyclopedias would be most likely to succeed over a 15 year period, you would probably have picked the wrong answer. The choices were:
  1. Encarta, funded by Microsoft, employing and paying experts to write thousands of articles for a CD-ROM and an online encyclopedia.
  2. An encyclopedia written by tens of thousands of people who would be doing it purely for fun. These writers wouldn't need any particular qualifications and would give their time freely so that this encyclopedia could be shared at no cost with anyone in the world who wanted to use it.
Fifteen years ago most people would have chosen No. 1 as the encyclopedia most likely to succeed, and most would have been wrong. Currently Wikipedia is the largest and most popular encyclopedia in the world with millions of articles in over 260 languages.

Next week on Tuesday I'm involved in a meeting at school to discuss the future of IT and come up with a 3 year plan. I'm hoping we make the right choices and decisions. I'm hoping, that just like all the thousands of people who contributed to Wikipedia simply because they were motived to do so by a purpose greater than themselves, that the teachers in our school will embrace this great opportunity to move forward into the future and will trust that we will support them on this journey.

Photo Credit: Sunset in Sarasota by Livingonimpulse

1 comment:

  1. I simply cannot wait to read this book. It is number one on my summer reading list.