Book Review: “The Age of Context,” by Robert Scoble and Shel Israel

The image of Robert Scoble in the shower with his Google Glasses on is seared in our collective brains by now. But we should all stop laughing because it’s about to get serious, folks.

According to Scoble and his co-author Israel, there are five key trends that are converging to create the “age of context:”

  • Mobile
  • Social Media
  • Data
  • Location-Based Technology
  • Sensors

The Age of Context

This book is a funhouse tour through technologies, apps, and jaw-dropping devices that are on our horizons, whether we’re ready for them or not.

Many of the forthcoming developments raise issues of privacy, security, or safety, and the authors take the time to address those issues. It may be years before we come to grips with the new world where you can trade in your personal information in exchange for a more convenient and catered-to experience, but Scoble and Israel are laying the groundwork.

The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear Google Glasses

After cruising through this book, you will consider whether it might be nice to walk out of a store without visiting an actual cash register, or get driven to work in a driverless car, or get rescued by a firefighter wearing augmented reality glasses.

Scoble and Israel aren’t the only ones starting to bring up the big questions brought on by our new connected, contextual world. The Federal Trade Commission is holding a workshop on November 19 to discuss the privacy and security concerns surrounding the Internet of Things.

But the central premise of the book is hopeful. As much as the new technology forces us to deal with new challenges, it promises to potentially save lives, make us more productive, and revitalize our cities.

You can choose to be frightened or energized, but one way or another you’ll need to react to the changes highlighted in this exhilarating book.

Author’s Bio: Rosemary O’Neill is an insightful spirit who works for social strata — a top ten company to work for on the Internet . Check out the Social Strata blog. You can find Rosemary on Google+ and on Twitter as @rhogroupee

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