DIY - Hope or Threat?
I thought this was interesting, from Wired: In the Next Industrial Revolution, Atoms Are the New Bits, by Chris Anderson.
I started hearing rumbles about a resurgence of do-it-yourself (DIY) at some point in 2009 and to my way of thinking, it represented flickers of hope after all this economic malaise we've been going through. It struck me as hopeful in a variety of ways. For example, the idea that people will start using their creativity to make new things, instead of that long drive to somehow get a slice of some kind of bubble. And of course, it is nice to think of new and interesting industries, inventions, tools, etc. springing up out of the ashes of those that haven't been doing such a bang-up job or have become obsolete as time marches on (and it is always marching on, of course, even when some companies/industries don't quite realize it for far too long).
Of course, also interesting is that the cover for this issue of Wired brought up the idea that investors and even workers won't necessarily be needed for this new breed of innovators and entrepreneurs in this vision of a DIY industrial revolution. I think that's a little much though.
I tend to believe this trend, if it continues, represents more hope than threat. And of course it's good for investors to keep abreast of anything that could be disruptive to existing industries.
Another fact that kind of knocked me out me out in here... I remember when I first heard of a 3-D printer, I thought that was pretty amazing. The article said that now, there are sub-$1,000 3-D printers (which of course, fits into his theory here, since then such tools become much more accessible to many more people).
Of course, I know a lot of people are known to rebut or criticize Chris Anderson; the Long Tail theory had a lot of critics. But regardless, he does come up with some interesting food for thought, I think. (I'm currently reading his new-ish book, Free.)