"Bravo! In a work that′s fresh and inviting, Mirchandani shares with us his case studies in innovation and creativity. It′s no small irony that the ′IT revolution′ has created a technology industry that all too easily falls back on bromides and received wisdom. Mirchandani inspires us to return to IT′s roots, with the transformative power that comes from putting technology innovation in service to business and society."
Benjamin Fried, CIO, Google, Inc.
"At DeVry Education, we are focused on the next generation workforce that will build the Polymath enterprises of tomorrow. So, it′s good to see the book touch on such a wide range of technologies from cloud computing to emerging medicine that are shaping our curriculum. We are always looking for innovation, including online classes and instructional labs, and this book has got us thinking in new directions."
Daniel Hamburger, President and CEO, DeVry Inc.
"In this fascinating book, Mirchandani, himself an example of the new breed of Polymaths that he defines, brings into a sharp focus exactly what has been achieved by those who have the remarkable ability to combine and mix technology elements. An excellent read on multiple levels: to learn from; to be entertained by; and most of all, to leave you wondering what you could personally achieve."
Andy Mulholland, Global Chief Technology Officer, Capgemini
"A brilliant read. In order for individuals and companies to fully maximize new century opportunities and stay abreast of a constantly morphing technological frontier Mirchandani not only gives examples of the Polymath framework, but concrete evidence for successful leveraging. Thanks to technology, we can all be Polymaths if we open our minds to the possibilities. Consider this book your guide I think da Vinci would be proud."
Linda Avey, cofounder, 23andMe
"Mirchandani is one of the few technology analysts to realize that technology doesn′t come in neat bundles anymore, if it ever did. His stories and lessons cut across infotech, biotech, greentech, and mathtech. If you want to be a Polymath innovator, this is your bible!"
Thomas H. Davenport, President′s Distinguished Professor of IT and Management, Babson College; coauthor of Analytics at Work: Smarter Decisions, Better Results
"In today′s world, innovation distinguishes great companies from good ones. Mirchandani highlights the importance of technology in such innovation and, specific to IT, counsels about being a full partner of the business and being open to the best ideas from other industries and geographies. The book is full of examples on how to accomplish this and should be required reading for all IT professionals and students."
Caroline Watteeuw, Global CTO and SVP, Business Information Solutions, PepsiCo, Inc.
Prologue: The Field of Polymath Dreams xxxvii
PART I SPREZZATURA: THE ART OF MAKING THE COMPLEX LOOK EASY 1
CHAPTER 1 The New Polymath: In an Age of "Wicked Problems" and Technology Abundance 3
CHAPTER 2 Modern–Day Dark Ages: So Much Stagnation 17
CHAPTER 3 Polymath Profile #1: General Electric 31
PART II THE R–E–N–A–I–S–S–A–N–C–E FRAMEWORK: BUILDING BLOCKS FOR THE NEW POLYMATH 51
CHAPTER 4 Residence: Better Technologically Equipped Than the Offi ce 53
CHAPTER 5 Exotics: Innovation from Left Field 67
CHAPTER 6 Polymath Profile #2: Cognizant 81
CHAPTER 7 Networks: Bluetooth to Broadband 89
CHAPTER 8 Polymath Profile #3: Plantronics 107
CHAPTER 9 Arsonists: And Other Disruptors 113
CHAPTER 10 Polymath Profile #4: W. R. Hambrecht 129
CHAPTER 11 Interfaces: For All Our Senses 137
CHAPTER 12 Sustainability: Delivering to Both the Green and Gold Agendas 151
CHAPTER 13 Polymath Profile #5: Kleiner Perkins Cleantech 165
CHAPTER 14 Singularity: Human Machine Convergence 175
CHAPTER 15 Analytics: Spreadsheets, Search, and Semantics 191
CHAPTER 16 Polymath Profile #6: National Hurricane Center 205
CHAPTER 17 Networks Again: Communities, Crowds, Contracts, and Collaboration 213
CHAPTER 18 Clouds: Technology–as–a–Service 233
CHAPTER 19 Polymath Profile #7: salesforce.com 251
CHAPTER 20 Ethics: In an Age of Cyberwar and Cloning 257
PART III GROOMING YOUR OWN NEW POLYMATH 275
CHAPTER 21 Polymath Profile #8: BP CTO 277
CHAPTER 22 Moon Shots for Budding Polymaths 295
Epilogue: The Beginner′s Mind 303
About the Author 325