Goodbye Linear Thinking: Hello Exponential!
Our brains were not designed to process at the scale or speed of today’s ‘exponential’ world. Here’s what to do about it.
Our brains were not designed to process at the scale or speed of today’s ‘exponential’ world. Learning ‘the 6Ds’ can help.
and George Eastman was a 24-year-old junior THE YEAR WAS 1878, clerk at the Rochester Savings Bank in dire need of a vacation. He decided to go to Santo Domingo, in the Dominican Republic. At the suggestion of a co-worker, Eastman purchased all of the requisite photographic equipment to record the trip: a camera as big as a Rottweiler, a massive tripod, a jug of water, a heavy plateholder, the plates themselves, glass tanks, an assortment of chemicals, and, of course, a large tent — this last item providing a dark place in which to spread emulsion on the plates before exposure and a dark place to develop them afterwards.
Eastman never did go on that vacation; instead, he became obsessed with chemistry. Back then, photography was a ‘wet’ art, but Eastman — who craved a more portable process — heard about gelatin emulsions capable of remaining light-sensitive after drying. Working at night in his mother’s kitchen, he began to experiment with his own varieties. A natural-born tinkerer, Eastman took less than two years to invent both a dry plate formula and a machine that fabricated dry plates. The Eastman Dry Plate Company was born.
More tinkering followed. In 1884, Eastman invented roll film; and four years later he came up with a camera capable of taking advantage of that roll. In 1888, it became commercially available, later marketed under the slogan ‘You press the button, we do the rest.’ The Eastman Dry Plate Company had become the Eastman Company, but Eastman wanted to call it something ‘stickier’ that people would remember and talk about. One of his favorite letters was K. In 1892, the Eastman Kodak Company was born.
In those early years, if you would have asked George Eastman about Kodak’s business model, he would have said the company was somewhere between a chemical supply house and a dry goods purveyor (if dry plates can be considered dry goods). But that changed quickly. “The idea gradually dawned on me,” he once said, “that what we were doing was starting to make photography an everyday affair.” Eastman later said he wanted to make photography “as convenient as a pencil,” and for the next 100 years, Eastman Kodak did just that.
The Memory Business
In 1973, Steven Sasson was a freshly-minted graduate of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His degree in Electrical Engineering led to a job with Kodak’s Apparatus Division research lab where, a few months into his employment, his supervisor approached him with a ‘small’ request. Fairchild Semiconductor