Accidental Empires

Accidental Empires

Computer manufacturing is--after cars, energy production and illegal drugs--the largest industry in the world, and it's one of the last great success stories in American business. Accidental Empires is the trenchant, vastly readable history of that industry, focusing as much on the astoundingly odd personalities at its core--Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mitch Kapor, etc. and th Computer manufacturing is--after cars, energy production and illegal drugs--the largest industry in the world, and it's o...

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Title:Accidental Empires
Author:Robert X. Cringely
Rating:
Genres:Business
ISBN:Accidental Empires: How the Boys of Silicon Valley Make Their Millions, Battle Foreign Competition, and Still Can't Get a Date
ISBN
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Paperback
Number of Pages:384 pages pages

Accidental Empires Reviews

  • Jamie
    Nov 17, 2016
    This book is mind-blowing! The history of the first several decades of the microcomputer revolution, told as history should be told: as a series of stories. So many of the things mentioned in this book - inventions, founding of companies, rise and fall of people and fortunes - parti...
  • Reggie
    Oct 06, 2013
    Accidental Empires by Robert Cringely, released in 1992, tells the story of an insider?s view of the rise of the personal computing era. The Rebooted edition was released online for free earlier this year. Find it here: http://www.cringely.com/2013/02/04/ac... (use the Next & Pre...
  • Scoats
    Feb 11, 2013
    Although now dated, this is a great history of the personal computer. Cringely had an unique perceptive of this industry as history was happening. Cringely is a very interesting guy in his own right and utilizes that to good effect to the keep the subject from getting too dry. As I...
  • Ethan
    Jan 05, 2009
    A friend gave me Bob Cringely?s Accidental Empires years ago. Finally got around to it. Cringely is a gossip columnist for the tech industry, and even he realizes how ridiculous that sounds. It?s important context for Accidental Empires, a smart and interesting read. It?s a hi...
  • Tim
    May 16, 2009
    A pseudo-classic. I think it probably deserves that billing. I enjoyed it. I had moments of deja vu throughout, so I'm not sure if I had read it years ago -- man am I getting old, memories fading, mind turning to mush --, but it was a fun read nonetheless. I have read Cringely online f...
  • Peterboh
    May 23, 2009
    I really liked this book, especially after reading Black Swan and the likes, which describe the role of luck in success. The book is a great insider story about the early software and hardware ventures. It is a story of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates and their peers. Apart from the last cou...
  • David
    Apr 05, 2013
    awesome book about the early years of the PC (late 70s through mid 90s). There's a lot that I never know, didn't realize at the time, or had forgotten. Gives some good perspective on the current state of the industry The book is getting pretty dated (e.g., Steve Jobs was still at Ne...
  • Robert Kennedy
    Mar 08, 2010
    The story presented trails off at 1992 (the publishing date) and it is surprising to see how little has been accomplished in the computer industry in almost 10 years. Cringely tries to walk a fine line between describing the personalities of the people involved and guessing their motiv...
  • John
    Mar 06, 2013
    This is a great history of the personal computer industry. I enjoyed the insider knowledge and anecdotes about the personalities involved in bringing these technologies out. Reading this today (on my tablet) is a great way to look back and see how we arrived at the convergence devices ...
  • Matt Mcglothlin
    Jan 29, 2011
    It was more educational than well-written. I learned a lot about the personalities of early pioneers in the pc industry, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates in particular. The book provides insight on decisions being made to this day in the world of Apple, Microsoft and Adobe. In particular Appl...
  • Bryan
    May 23, 2013
    This book was written in 1992, with two add-on chapters from 1996. It's sort of a classic in the genre of histories of Silicon Valley. It's common to read stuff about pirates or knights or whatever and either think you were born too late, or that you can't believe how those primitiv...
  • Vladyslav
    Feb 29, 2012
    I was born in 1987 in Ukraine. The first PC I have seen was IBM clone at mother's work around 1993. My first computer I got around 1998 and it was already Pentium with Windows 95 on board. Now I work as software engineer. During my teenage I was always wondered where are all othe...
  • Roger Merritt
    Jan 01, 2013
    A collection of short biographies of the people who created the personal computer from the 1970s through the 1980s. I especially liked it because I was watching what was going on at the time and the names were mostly familiar to me. Bill Gates is America's richest man because Gary Kild...
  • Mike
    Jan 30, 2012
    This is a book about the first wave of technology immigrants who became the first tech-billionairs in Silicon Valley. It is about the PC empires and the first giant software companies that fed the beast - Microsoft, Adobe, Apple, Sun, Oracle ... The time before Yahoo, Facebook, Google ...
  • Steven
    Apr 24, 2019
    If you want to know how we all wound up with a computer on every desktop, here you go! ...
  • Frank Palardy
    Jun 12, 2017
    Good, the basis for his show about nerds. ...
  • Jo Oehrlein
    Feb 04, 2013
    I've enjoyed the chapter by chapter re-read on cringely.com. The book is obviously dated in that it makes comments on history leading to a "present" that was 20 years ago. Still, Cringely's got good insights into many of the companies that are still important in our world (Apple, Mi...
  • Murray
    Nov 10, 2016
    Difficult to rate because it's truly a period piece but overall it's fantastic. You get, not only, a glimpse into the rise of the tech companies that shape today (Microsoft, Apple, IBM, Intel, Sun, Etc) but there's a layer of gossip since the author (Cringely) happened to be a writer a...
  • Rand
    Oct 26, 2014
    More than a mere (view spoiler)[ accounting of the advent of personal computing but a compelling story about the people who made the tech tick. People who wanted to play games, people who stole ideas from each other, people who gained and lost fortunes faster than the number of transis...
  • Murray Fife
    Sep 04, 2012
    I just re-purchased it to re-read after I couldn?t find my original. Although Accidental Empires was written in 1996, and has to be read old-school style since it?s not available on the Kindle, this is a great history of how all of the major tech companies that are still around got...
  • Sean
    Jan 20, 2013
    Some of the reservations people have about Cringley's style are forgivable: if you haven't read around the subject of the PC revolution and researched the subjects for yourself, you'll think his attitude is to say the least disrespectful. When you appreciate just how weird some of thes...
  • Song
    Nov 07, 2013
    It's a truly pleasant experience to read this book, actually I should confess that I laughed A LOT in the reading. The book is hilarious. Besides the fun part, I was inspired by this book too. This book went through the early history of Personal Computer industry, gave the vivid sil...
  • Dane Cobain
    Jun 02, 2013
    When you read a book about computing, you can generally predict how good it's going to be based upon how recently the first edition was released. Things move so quickly in the computing world (thanks to Moore's Law) that by the time a book goes to print, it's often already obsolete. ...
  • Joseph
    Dec 08, 2013
    It's very informative, and in my view, should be read along with The Innovator's Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business. From a historical standpoint, it was right-on, and reflects the current state of the industry in the early and mid-1990s. However, ...
  • Toby Whaymand
    Jan 11, 2015
    I have had this book years, the pages are yellow and I've read it so many times, every time read this book I still find myself laughing out load. It because of Cringely's humour, the comedy factor that makes this book such an excellent education tool. This is my one of my favorite book...
  • Dimitrios Mistriotis
    Dec 04, 2017
    Great book and huge influence. ...
  • Kaitlyn
    Jul 27, 2018
    Seriously outdated, rampantly racist in too many parts. ...
  • Deborah J Miles
    Jul 30, 2017
    My version was printed in 1996. It was a set book for an Open University course which I was taking, and is Cringely's own account of how the personal computing industry started up. I was concerned that it would be stuffed with jargon and concepts beyond my understanding, but it wasn't....
  • Fahad Uddin
    Jul 24, 2019
    Real stories of Gates and Jobs. Also other companies around. ...
  • Jayesh Mahapatra
    Feb 06, 2019
    A very interesting book on the evolution of PC industry from an IT industry gossip column writer ! Yup, I didn't know such a job existed as well. Although, the writing may come as somewhat disrespectuful, in reality it's just Robert's way of referring to his fellow IT people many of wh...