Another Fabulous Tool from Apple and a Book that Wants You to Unlock Your Own Fabulous Works
January 31, 2010
Most observers instantly declared both fabulous, though a few found fault with some iPad details. You’d have to be on an extended trip to another planet to miss the news of Apple’s iPad, the long-anticipated tablet computer that may do to book, magazine and newspaper publishing what iTunes did to the music business.
Seth Godin is a prolific writer with ten books and one of the longest-running, most-read and most influential blogs of all time. Many are already declaring Linchpin the most important book Godin has written, that it will be life changing for those who read it and world changing for the works that ensue.
This post is not a book review, or a review of Apple’s latest cool technology. It’s an alert. It’s a sign of new possibilities in the midst of all our angst over economies and policies and things that may blow up with little or no warning and we’re standing too close.
This week Steve Jobs and Apple demonstrated once again that we can still invent cool tools that are fun to use, and in the process transform whole industries. And this week Seth Godin introduced us to a Manifesto of Fabulous: a guide, a map and an energizer for how each one of us, individually and collectively can make our own fabulous things.
You can find a hint of what was to come in his new book in this brief post from his blog dated November 8, 2009. It’s titled simply "Fabulous"
This is so cool: because we only look at things we want to look at, only talk about things worth talking about, the amount of fabulous in the world continues to rise exponentially.
Even though we're at the tail end of the great recession, think about all the cool stuff in your life. Not just stuff you can buy, but experiences, works of art, innovations of all kinds... the bar has been raised for what you need to do to be noticed, and the market is responding.
Not only do I notice more fabulous, but it sure seems as though the creators of it are more engaged, dedicated and yes, joyful, than I can remember. If there was ever a moment to follow your passion and do work that matters, this is it. You can't say, "but I need to make a fortune instead," because that's not happening right now. So you might as well join the people who can say, "I love doing this."
Fabulous Infrastructure and Machines
There's a lot of talk of our transformation from an Industrial Age to a Digital Age. In this post-industrial era, some suppose there's little change or innovation to be found when it comes to engineering water or wastewater projects, or the industrial equipment that's used in building and running those installations.
Yet for those who bother to look there's a wealth of innovation—of fabulous people designing and building fabulous equipment:
- I’ve seen fabulous digital weighing technologies designed specifically for process control. These Smart Force Transducers are developed and manufactured in Niederlenz, Switzerland, and they are just one example of how digital instruments are applied in industrial equipment.
- In an article on how innovation turbo-charges industrial companies I profiled Jim Foley in Pitman, NJ, who headed the team that developed a new material flow aid for gravimetric feeders.
- Fabulous water projects have a long and storied history, the evidence of which can be seen in places like Pont du Gard, France, where a Roman era aqueduct from 19 BC still stands. The city of Rome itself had eleven aqueducts constructed over a period of 500 years.
- Philadelphia's Fairmount Water Works was the site of the world's first high-pressure steam engine. The project got its start in 1790 when Ben Franklin left the city 100,000 pounds to develop an abundant supply of water.In 1805 Philadelphia's Watering Committee began work on a collection of Federal and Greek revival buildings that housed steam engines and later water wheels and turbines powered by the Schuylkill river. The buildings were surrounded by formal gardens, attracting tourists, painters and photographers from around the world. After a visit from England in 1842, Charles Dickens wrote, "In Philadelphia there is a place that is wondrous to behold, and that is the Philadelphia Waterworks."
The point of these examples is that people have been creating every day things filled with fabulous ideas and designs for a very long time. Today there are more people than ever who dare to reach beyond the common to set new standards in their fields. Godin thinks a new wave is coming that will sweep away today's other trend, the one taking us toward the age of the commodity. Those who buy and read Linchpin may find themselves among those riding at the top of this wave. He says that would be fabulous.