Yes, "disruptive technologies" are technologies that force changes in the way business is done.  The key is to recognize the potential of the technology and harness it to direct the evolution of both it and the business to mutual benefit.
My Grandfather owned a frozen food locker plant in the '30s.  The affordable refridgerator emerged as a disruptive technology that doomed his business.  He recognized this as the appliance began to be sold and changed his business plan to provide the meat and other frozen foods for people to store in their refridgerators, delivering product to homes and helping people make their food bills smaller through purchase plans.  Too bad he was not around to give some advice to WebVan.
One disruptive technology in our business is instant messaging.  NCLB has mandated that we block this tool, just when we had started figuring out ways to allow teachers and students to collaborate with it.  I think this is a prime example of reacting negatively to disruptive technology instead of finding ways for it to slingshot us forward in new and constructive directions.
Steve Barner, South Burlington

>>> [log in to unmask] 03/05/04 09:47AM >>>

On Mar 5, 2004, at 9:29 AM, Dave Tisdell wrote:

> If you don't care about linux scroll to the last section entitled "The
> person who doesn't want to learn". In light of all of the debate
> recently
> about technology use in schools, that section seemed to be particularly
> pertinent. The article can be found here:

Thanks for the link ... the footnote about the author hints
at the root of the matter

        Andy Oram is an editor at O'Reilly & Associates,
        specializing in books on Linux and programming.
        Most recently, he edited
        Peer-to-Peer: Harnessing the Power of Disruptive Technologies.

I think he's using "harnessing" in a postive rather than negative
sense ...

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