My name is Byron Reese. I am the publisher of Gigaom.
I have always loved technology. As a kid, I was always taking stuff apart to figure out how it worked. I grew convinced that I must have a knack for engineering because whenever I would put something back together, I always had a few pieces leftover. If that isn’t talent, I don’t know what is.
Like many people that are fascinated by technology, I loved science fiction. I was, and still am, a big Star Trek fan. Years ago, I read a quote by the creator of Star Trek, Gene Roddenberry. He said that in the future, “There would be no hunger, there would be no greed, and all the children will know how to read.”
This quote gnawed at me, and I wondered if it was true. Or did it just sound true because it rhymed. So I decided to try to figure it out. That’s how I became a futurist.
I got into business early in life. When I was 12, my mom asked me to paint our house number on our curb with a stencil. Our neighbor, Mr. Roland, saw me doing it and asked me to do his as well. Afterwards gave me $5. Five bucks! For five minutes work. In 1980! I remember hearing a distinct “ka-ching” inside my head. I immediately started going door-to-door, and made a kid-sized fortune. I have been an entrepreneur ever since.
After I had some business success as an adult, I began getting invitations to give talks. Good speakers write a speech and give it over and over. I am not a good speaker. I have never given the same speech twice. I just can’t bring myself to do it… it feels like I am phoning it in. So, I would give talks about whatever I was interested in at the time. After a while, I noticed that the same themes were coming up over and over. Suddenly that collection of speeches looked a lot like a book. That’s how I became an author. My upcoming book is about AI and is called “The Fourth Age: Smart Robots, Conscious Computers, and the Future of Humanity.”
That’s why being the publisher of Gigaom is my dream job. I get to explore the intersection of technology, business, and the future. And here at the Publisher’s Corner, you can read my various musings on these topics. Sign up to receive occasional updates from me here. Follow me on Twitter at @byronreese.