Nov 7, 2011

Innovation as Tweaking

In the eulogies that followed Jobs’s death, last month, he was repeatedly referred to as a large-scale visionary and inventor. But Isaacson’s biography suggests that he was much more of a tweaker. 
That is from Malcolm Gladwell's New Yorker article titled "The Tweaker."
And this is part of the article Gladwell refers to when talking about why tweaking was key for British Industrial Revolution: 
During the Industrial Revolution technological progress and innovation became the main drivers of economic growth. But why was Britain the technological leader? We argue that one hitherto little recognized British advantage was the supply of highly skilled, mechanically able craftsmen who were able to adapt, implement, improve, and tweak new technologies and who provided the micro inventions necessary to make macro inventions highly productive and remunerative.
Is Gladwell a great tweaker--writer--himself ? If he is, he is one of my favorites! But probably we all are . . . or try to be. 
HT Free Exchange.

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