|www.ebbemunk.dkUnleashing the Killer App|
We live in an age of anxiety, where rapid changes to social, economic, and political systems—mischief shaped by digital technologies—have left most business people feeling dazed. The chief culprits are disruptive forces we call killer apps—new information technology goods and services that change the rules of the game for people who aren't even remotely connected to the killer apps' intended markets. New killer apps are coming faster all the time.
The goal of developing a digital strategy is to turn anxiety into an advantage, by replacing current planning and strategy activities with new ones better suited to a business environment populated by killer apps. First, though, we need to understand how we got into this mess. Three primary principles—Moore's Law, Metcalfe's Law, and the economic theories of Ronald H. Coase—will get you most of the way there. Moore's Law explains how computers, telecommunication services, and data storage systems defy the laws of gravity and commerce, becoming faster, cheaper, and smaller, all at increasing velocity. Metcalfe's Law demonstrates why these technologies have a tendency to spread quickly and how they move from early adoption to widespread acceptance in great leaps rather than smooth intervals. Coase explains the economics behind this behavior, the clearest explanation we know for the disruptive influence killer apps have on long-standing business traditions and the most stable industries. Putting the three together, the short answer is that for today's killer apps Moore's Law makes it possible, while Metcalfe's Law makes it profitable.
Chapters 1 and 2 present a framework for understanding how these principles apply in today's business environment. Chapter 3 introduces digital strategy, an approach to planning that exploits rather than reacts to the most unstable features of this new world.