17 May 2008

Technology today has its beginnings in our past

Several ‘generation now’ friends of mine responded with dismay to my previous posts. They said that their generation (typically 15-24 years) was indeed unique: more adventurous, passionate and technologically savvy than any others they knew of. They felt (a) my previous posts glorified older people unnecessarily, (b) using the ‘generation now’ tag for anybody over 25 years of age was incorrect, and (c) the Internet was truly theirs.

Well, I told them about Steve Jobs. Born in 1955 (that makes him 53 years of age –old enough to be a father-figure to the ‘generation now’), Steve Jobs is not only the co-founder of Apple, but also a man greatly admired for his contribution to today’s technology: computers, design, user interfaces, graphics, animation, the iPod and the iPhone.

Like Steve Jobs, there are others who would fail the 15-24 years age group test for ‘generation now’, but could still call the Internet truly theirs. Here’s a small list:

Sabeer Bhatia of Hotmail, born 1968. Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com, born 1964. Jerry Yang (born 1968) and David Filo (born 1966) of Yahoo!. Tom Anderson (born 1975) and Chris DeWolfe (born 1966) of MySpace. Sergey Brin (born 1973) and Larry Page (born 1973) of Google. Steve Chen (born 1978) and Chad Hurley (born 1977) of YouTube. The youngest person from this eminent list (and there are many others I haven’t included) is 30 years of age.

In my opinion, these gentlemen are just as adventurous, passionate and technologically savvy as today’s ‘generation now’.

Anyway, the idea is not to argue over who is the real ‘generation now’. After all, ‘generation now’ is a socio-cultural classification identifying the habits, behaviour and psychographic profile of today’s youngsters. The idea is to acknowledge the fact that everything evolves over time. Technology today, as much as our socio-cultural habits and behaviour, and our psychographic profile, all have their beginnings in our past.

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