The World is Being Flattened

... by Ten Forces
  1. Collapse of Berlin Wall--11/89: The event not only symbolized the end of the Cold war, it allowed people from other side of the wall to join the economic mainstream. (11/09/1989)
  2. Netscape: Netscape and the Web broadened the audience for the Internet from its roots as a communications medium used primarily by 'early adopters and geeks' to something that made the Internet accessible to everyone from five-year-olds to eighty-five-year olds. (8/9/1995)
  3. Work Flow Software: The ability of machines to talk to other machines with no humans involved. These first three forces have become a “crude foundation of a whole new global platform for collaboration.”
  4. Uploading: Communities uploading and collaborating on online projects. Examples include open source software, blogs, and Wikipedia - "the most disruptive force of all."
  5. Outsourcing: Allows companies to split service and manufacturing activities into components, with each component performed in most efficient, cost-effective way.
  6. Offshoring: Manufacturing's version of outsourcing.
  7. Supply-Chaining: Compare the modern retail supply chain to a river. Wal-Mart may be the best example of a company using technology to streamline sales, distribution, and shipping.
  8. Insourcing: UPS is a prime example for insourcing, in which the company's employees perform services--beyond shipping--for another company. For example, UPS itself repairs Toshiba computers on behalf of Toshiba. The work is done at the UPS hub, by UPS employees.
  9. In-forming: Google and other search engines are the prime example. "Never before in the history of the planet have so many people-on their own-had the ability to find so much information about so many things and about so many other people".
  10. "The Steroids": Personal digital devices like mobile phones, iPods, personal digital assistants, instant messaging, and voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP).
List and quotes from The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman