Book Review: The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution

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Title: The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution
Author: Walter Isaacson
Release Date: October 7th 2014
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Source: Giveaway
Rating: ★★★


The computer and the internet are among the most important innovations of our era, but few people know who created them. They were not conjured up in a garret or garage by solo inventors suitable to be singled out on magazine covers or put into a pantheon with Edison, Bell, and Morse. Instead, most of the innovations of the digital age were done collaboratively. There were a lot of fascinating people involved, some ingenious and a few even geniuses. This is the story of these pioneers, hackers, inventors, and entrepreneurs—who they were, how their minds worked, and what made them so creative. It’s also a narrative of how they collaborated and why their ability to work as teams made them even more creative.


My Review: 

This biography tells the story and origins of computers and what would later become the digital revolution and the technological advances that continue today. 

There's been other biographies about this subject and I was worried that it would focus too much on the engineering aspects of the technology and it would be a tedious read. I wanted a layman's biography of 'The Digital Revolution', focusing on the history, the people, and the technology but keeping a balance of all three. 

The Innovators stresses on the collaboration between various innovators instead of one major innovator paving the way and while this was stressed in the introduction, the layout of the book kept focusing on one person per chapter and largely did what it set out not to do, focusing on major players and what they did instead of the collaborative part of advancing computer technology. 

The book was entertaining and easy to read and had a nice narrative flow to it, explaining relatively well the technology and the personal history without confusing and keeping the attention of the reader. 

If you're interested in an overall story on how the modern computer and by extension, modern 21st century technology, including smart phones, tablets etc, then I would pick this up. Isaacson is a great writer and has an almost conversational tone in his writing, which keeps you engaged throughout. It's also a great Christmas gift to give since almost anybody can read it and be engaged by it. 

The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution is available here

-Amanda Leon 

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