Preface to the Tenth Anniversary Edition

cover-hi-resAs publication of the second edition of The Escher Cycle approaches, I thought it would be good to share the new preface to this edition.

It explores some of the changes that have happened during the ten years since initial publication, and asks whether any of the predictions made by the book’s thinking came true.

No one ever steps in the same river twice,
for it is not the same river
and they are not the same person.
— Heraclitus, c. 535-475BC

In the ten years since I wrote The Escher Cycle the world has changed. A billion more people now live on the planet. And what were once the “emerging economies” of the BRICs nations have now grown to account for nearly a quarter of global GDP. They have emerged.

At the same time, some business models that were strong a decade ago have all but disappeared. DVD rental stores and makers of CD players hang on here and there, but the Internet has replaced most of them. Businesses such as Instagram and Whatsapp, meanwhile, have grown from zero to multi-billion dollar valuations in just a few short months.

This ever-changing economy is the ever-changing river that Heraclitus talked about over two and a half thousand years ago. And the rate of change is getting faster.

But some things do not change. Continue Reading >