Scoble Age of Context interview – London – 12 December 2013
Robert Scoble is among the world’s best known tech journalists, with an eye for what’s next in technology, business and life. He’s currently in London, delivering a digital masterclass to 100 or so executives in Bloomsbury – an event hosted by Thomas Power, the UK’s own tech geek.
Last night, we interviewed Scoble for 90 minutes. He’s just published a book with another accomplished journalist, Shel Israel, with whom he previously published Naked Conversations in 2006. The key message from their new book Age of Context: it’s all about winning.
Their new book (buy it here on Amazon) looks at the convergence of five powerful forces which, together, open up a new world of possibilities for “software which can do very powerful things for all of us”.
As discussed by Israel and Scoble in Age of Context the forces are mobile, social, big data, sensors and location, and the possibilities are, according to the authors, both limitless and imminent.
Scoble began the interview by putting on a pair of reflective Oakley ski goggles to check out his “heads up” display. (I can’t begin to tell you how weird it is to start an interview when you can’t look someone in the eye, and even worse you can only see a bloated reflection of yourself.) But the time with Scoble flew, and so did the anecdotes, facts, insights and learnings. He then delivered an after dinner talk to 6o executives – entertaining and eye opening – and it very quickly descended into a heated debate about privacy, Government, innovation and personal choice.
Scoble has interviewed thousands of executives and technology innovators himself, and it seems he has lunch with the who’s who of global tech startups. There’s almost nothing in the tech world he doesn’t know something about.
So should we care? Isn’t he just an overexcited geek with an inflated twitter reflex?
No, Scoble is someone who is excited – like a kid in a sweet shop – about the possibilities technology brings us, and knows a heck of a lot about how it all fits together. He can make sense of it all and explain why you should care. Not just tomorrow’s technologies, but today’s as well. He loves to tell how technology enabled him to get one of three available seats home when his flight was cancelled (but before it was announced to everyone on the plane!), and how he can guarantee there will always be a cab waiting for him when he needs one. It was also technology that helped him land a seven figure deal this weekend just passed.
According to Scoble: “we’re all competing with each other, and I’m winning.” He’s not arrogant about it – he’s matter of fact – even pleasant. But he says that technology is now giving almost anyone, anywhere massive advantages over others around them. And for this reason, he believes those who don’t embrace these new technologies will be left behind.
Watch out for our clips from the interview – coming your way soon …