Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/01/18/scc_12_nick_carr/

From water wheels to the Google brain

Nick Carr's scary take on the future of computing

By Ashlee Vance

Posted in Semi-Coherent Computing, 18th January 2008 20:02 GMT

Radio Reg Semi-Coherent Computing listeners who have yet to read Nick Carr's new book The Big Switch will almost certainly want to pick up a copy.

The book takes you on a journey from the evolution of the electricity industry, to the rise of utility computing and then to how computers are toying with our brains. It's a heck of a ride. (Reg hack Andrew Orlowski has a more formal review here.)

Carr joined me on Semi-Coherent Computing to discuss some of the issues raised in the book. We spend a lot of time hitting on Carr's utility computing vision, including his thoughts on the futures of companies such as IBM, HP, Dell, Sun Microsystems, Amazon and Google. Want to know who will survive the utility computing shakeout? We almost answer that question.

Later in the show, we nail the more philosophical and cultural bits raised by Carr. This is gripping stuff. I swear.

(Brief aside: Please ignore any time shifted errors in the interview. We recored it in December. Also, there's a choppy bit in the middle, but don't give up because that gets fixed in short order.)

As always, I hope you enjoy the show. Thanks to all of you who bought both Carr's book and mine. Judging by the Amazon ties, a number of you have.

The uninitiated will find Carr's blog and bio here.

Now on to the show.

Semi-Coherent Computing - Episode 12

Open source types can get Ogged and Vorbed here, those plagued by low-bandwidth can catch a smaller, crappier quality show here and those of you with macho-sized bandwidth can get the big daddy here.

You can also grab the show off iTunes here or subscribe to the show via this feed.

Thanks for your ears. ®