Tools and Weapons - The Promise and the Peril of the Digital Age
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Om Tools and Weapons
With a foreword from Bill Gates From Microsoft's President and one of the tech industry's wisest thinkers, a frank and thoughtful reckoning with how to balance enormous promise and existential risk as the digitization of everything accelerates. __________ Microsoft President Brad Smith operates by a simple core belief: when your technology changes the world, you bear a responsibility to help address the world you have helped create. This might seem uncontroversial, but it flies in the face of a tech sector long obsessed with rapid growth and sometimes on disruption as an end in itself. Now, though, we have reached an inflection point: Silicon Valley has moved fast and it has broken things. A new understanding has emerged that companies that create technology must accept greater responsibility for the future. And governments will need to regulate technology by moving faster and catching up with the pace of innovation that is impacting our communities and changing the world. In Tools and Weapons, Brad Smith takes us into the cockpit of one of the world's largest and most powerful tech companies as it finds itself in the middle of some of the thorniest emerging issues of our time. These are challenges that come with no pre-existing playbook, including privacy, cybercrime and cyberwar, social media, the moral conundrums of AI, big tech's relationship to inequality and the challenges for democracy, far and near. While in no way a self-glorifying "Microsoft memoir," the book opens up the curtain remarkably wide onto some of the company's most crucial recent decision points, as it strives to protect the hopes technology offers against the very real threats it also presents. Every tool can be a weapon in the wrong person's hands, and companies are being challenged in entirely new ways to embrace the totality of their responsibilities. We have moved from a world in which Silicon Valley could take no prisoners to one in which tech companies and governments must work together to address the challenges and adapt to the changes technology has unleashed. There are huge ramifications to be thought through, and Brad Smith provides a marvellous and urgently necessary contribution to that effort. __________ In Tools and Weapons, Brad Smith takes us behind the scenes on some of the biggest stories to hit the tech industry in the past decade. From Edward Snowden's NSA leak to the NHS WannaCry ransomware attack, this book is essential reading to understand what's happening in the world around us. (P) 2019 Hodder & Stoughton Ltd
Tools and Weapons offers a clear view of the questions raised by new technologies, and a potential path forward for tech companies and for societies. - Bill Gates One of the few executives willing to speak openly about the industry's most vexing issues. - Sunday Times 'A colourful and insightful insiders' view of how technology is both empowering and threatening us. From privacy to cyberattacks, this timely book is a useful guide for how to navigate the digital future.' - Walter Isaacson Taming Big Tech will not be easy, but this book . . . shows where to start. - The Financial Times Smith's book is not the typical vanity project churned out by so many Fortune 500 leaders, the generic tomes on leadership and teamwork stocked at airport bookstores near the neck pillows. Tools and Weapons is a glimpse behind the curtain as Microsoft reckoned with the Snowden revelations, defended against the vicious cyberattacks, and took both the Obama and Trump administrations to court.' Rolling Stone Brad Smith makes the case for a new relationship between the tech sector and government - closer cooperation and challenges for each side. - New York Times Brad Smith and Carol Ann Browne get to the heart of some of the biggest tech issues of our time, including privacy, cybersecurity and responsible AI, and their impact on all of our lives. - Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft This is a colorful and insightful insiders' view of how technology is both empowering us and threatening us. From privacy to cyberattacks, this timely book is a useful guide for how to navigate the digital future. - Walter Isaacson, bestselling author of The Innovators and Steve Jobs Coming from an industry driven by disruption, it's refreshing to read Brad Smith's call for the tech sector to assume more responsibility. In Tools and Weapons, Brad and Carol Ann Browne wrestle with some of the world's toughest technology challenges with common sense and valuable insight reflecting their inside experience. The ideas in Tools and Weapons won't solve all our problems, but they're a very good place to start. - Reed Hastings, CEO, Netflix