Quick & simple review – The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation

The idea factory explores the history of Bell Labs from the 1920’ to the 1980’. Jon Gartner, the author of the book, answers one, the most important question of our era – what causes innovation? The book is an insightful and appealing record of the years of discovery at the Labs and core milestones in the history of technology that was achieved. Throughout those years of innovation, more than a dozen Bell Labs’ employees won seven Noble prizes. Jon Gartner takes us through the journey and shows how collective effort and collective thinking was accomplished. To have a full scale of this issue just keep in mind that the organisation was a behemoth which, at its peak, was employing more than a thousand PhDs.

In the beginning, the book focuses on how the transistor was invented, but then on it moves to semiconductors, microwave towers, digital transmission, satellites, radio astronomy, fibre optics, the first undersea cable, cell phones, lasers and many more. In today’s world many people take those solutions or devices for granted but for them, they were totally blue oceans.

Gartner concentrates on top scientists at Bell Labs and their leadership skills rather than the thousands of other engineers, physicists, and chemists working for them. By introducing separate biographies of those men, he emphasizes the hard work necessary to accomplish great change.

The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation
by Jon Gertner

Interesting story          gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-stargrey-star
Complexity of ideas   gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-stargrey-star
Repetitiveness             gold-stargold-stargrey-stargrey-stargrey-star
Flourish language       gold-stargold-stargold-stargrey-stargrey-star
Recommendation      gold-stargold-stargold-stargold-stargrey-star

Size: 432 pages
Published: 2012

Other information and reviews of this book on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11797471-the-idea-factory

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