The Seventh Sense

The Seventh Sense

Power, Fortune, and Survival in the Age of Networks

Book - 2016 | First edition
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The Digital Age is as transformative as the Industrial Revolution and Joshua Cooper Ramo explains how to survive. Drawing on examples from business, science, and politics, Ramo illuminates people's transformative world. Start by imagining a near future when America's greatest power is not its military or its economy, but its control of the Internet.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2016
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780316285063
Branch Call Number: 303.4833 RAM 2016
Characteristics: viii, 343 pages ; 25 cm
Alternative Title: 7th sense


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Apr 05, 2018

Very Zen beginning; if only we could all study at the feet of THE MASTER! [Evidently, Grasshopper Ramo is devoid of any knowledge of the Chinese communists' subjugation and destruction of Buddhists and believes that communists and Buddhists to be two peas in a pod?!]
Before you've finished the first 50 pages, you may be asking yourself - - as I pondered - - is this dude the simpleton's simpleton, or is he purposely spewing disinformation?
On p. 11 the klaxon started screaming when the author, Grasshopper Ramo, states:
// A financial crisis that seems to drag on endlessly, despite the efforts of our best minds and most energetic central banks. \\
Is this dude for real????????
Has he never heard of credit default swaps, the InterContinental Exchange [ICE], super-speed/mass speculation, DTCC/virtual stocks trading-speculation, dark pools, MERS, Covington and Burling, Blythe Masters, super-sized REITs, LIBOR rigging, interest rate swaps rigging, precious metals markets rigging, all markets and exchanges rigging . . . the explosion in money laundering through MERS-coordinated CDOs at Citigroup, HSBC, Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera???
Although Ramo tries to sound like the ultra-elitist who dines in the most rarefied circles, to those of us with an IQ above a pet rock, Grasshopper Ramo sounds like a bundle of pure nonsense! [Author's description on pp. 40 to 44 boggles the mind!]
To repeat: from 1997 to 2007, $23 trillion in securitized debt was sold, and from 2007 to 2009, households throughout America, Europe and Asia lost $23 trillion in assets, value and wealth; the colossal wealth transfer from the 90% to the .01%!
On p. 98, Grasshopper Ramo claims: // Mubarak {of Egypt} had been president for thirty years. \\ NO! He'd been dictator for thirty years!
This dude, Grasshopper Ramo, has a filthy habit of misrepresenting recent history and trying to make legends out of submediocrities like Frank Wisner, Jr., who never figured that Sidney Gottlieb [of the CIA, with or without Richard Helms' support] offed his daddy - - and it was Frank Wisner, Jr., which the author appears to have completely forgotten or misrepresents, who publicly proclaimed from Egypt that Mubarak should remain // president \\ in Egypt.***
And FYI, Grasshopper Ramo, when American, European and Japanese corporations offshored jobs, technology and investment to China - - THAT was its major economic driver!
[Be sure to read Ramo's acknowledgements section.]
***Fun facts not found in this book: Frank Wisner, Jr. is the stepfather of former French president, Nicholas Sarkazy and Wisner - - together with John Negroponte, working through the Franco-American Foundation - - fomented false scandals against Sarkozy's competitor candidate to win the presidential election that first time for Sarkozy.]

Dec 08, 2017

I would contest bcstout's position quite simply: as Ramo points out, the "Seventh Sense," is not something you can read a simple how to guide on or develop by reading a book. It is an understanding that one has or must develop on their own terms. For some, this is something that simply will never happen, for any number of reasons which the author explores even fairly early on in this book. This was never intended to be a book one reads to develop this new sensibility, rather it is an explorative look at the importance of this idea in a shifting, modern world. Excellent read, masterfully written. At the end of the day the purpose, I think, is to look inward if you hope to develop this "Seventh Sense." There is no golden bullet to be found here. Just my $0.02.

May 14, 2017

The author provides too much history and philosophical asides before finally arriving at his central thesis: that we all need to develop a "Seventh Sense" in choosing and enriching the right networks by our presence. Second half of the book is better than the first. He's right that technology can be a barrier or a blessing, depending on who's in control. However, there is still much to be decided (Joshua is connected with the worldview of Kissinger/Foreign Affairs folks) before we choose a gatekeeper approach.

pb001 Nov 30, 2016

very good read.

Nov 30, 2016

This book started with such potential. Ramo is certainly a gifted storyteller, drawing the reader in with a compelling blend of anecdote, aphorism, and history. But he never actually advanced his core thesis, even though like a fool I continued through to the bitter end. This is a 308 page book that should be a 2,500 word article.

Thesis: we live in a networked era, where "connection changes the nature of a thing". This era is characterized by a relentless increase in speed (which collapses time and distance) and will ultimately lead to a world where machines increasingly handle tasks beyond the realm of human comprehension. Artificial intelligence thus brings a host of practical and ethical challenges, and only a handful of people (the architects of the internet in Silicon Valley) are presently equipped to address them. How to face this new world? The "Seventh sense" applies to those who grasp the realities of this new world and are able to navigate it fluently, breaking free of the bonds of conventional thinking to take advantage of new possibilities (the Napoleons of our time).

I read with interest, but he never actually says how to get this seventh sense, or even makes a normative case for how a democratic society should attempt to wrestle with its implications (not-so-stirring conclusion: it rests with the education of its citizenry).

Too bad. Neat theory, not well developed. Should have been an essay, not a book.

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