I’m glad I read this book: it captures the beginning of a powerful force that will shape the later period of the 21st century. It explains the driving force behind the news headlines we see everyday. Thus, it is no exaggeration to say that just by reading this book will enable the reader to understand what is going on in the world.

           Clearly, one of the things that kept popping up in the book was the impact of technology. However, the impact that Friedman mentions is unlike what we see in academics. When textbooks talk about the influence of technology, I did not clearly see the impact. I just understood; I did not necessarily see the impact working in my daily life. Now I do, just by reading this book. Now I see how people in the early 1990s worked so hard to put fiber cables all over the world just so they could get connected with people from different countries. Now I know why the invention of PC was such a remarkable event to the history of mankind. Technology, according to this book, enabled worldwide collaboration- the kind of collaboration that would be quite impossible without the aid of technology. After I first heard about the debate of technology widening the gap between the rich and poor even more, it was hard for me to see the positive side of technology to the individuals who want to contribute to the world. Thanks to Friedman, I could see how technology has empowered those individuals by offering them cheap and fast medium to connect to more people.

           Because the book is written by a famous journalist, the book is faced-paced and full of excitement. It portrays changes in positive and negative light. For instance, in Chapter 1, Friedman presents his beliefs in series of changes that he experiences. This manner eventually excited me because he received emails telling him the incidents where the flattening process is occurring and scurring through Asia to actually experience these changes. It’s first-hand experience that I, as a student could rarely get. Therefore, by seeing Friedman actually moving around and talking to people about the flattening process is exciting because he gets to see all these revolutionary things like the biggest screen in Asian located Infosys center in Banglore or Chinese in Dalia being the “backroom” for housing industries in Japan.

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June 9, 2008

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