Thank you for being late: Tom Friedman tells why

Muscat, Feb 23 – In a packed venue at the 24th edition of Muscat International Book Fair (MIBF), three-time Pulitzer award winner Thomas Friedman spoke about the “importance of pausing in the age of acceleration”. He began by explaining the first question he gets from people regarding the title of his latest book, Thank You for Being Late. “The title comes from meeting people for breakfast in Washington DC, where I live. I often schedule breakfast and in most cases, the guests are 10-15 minutes late.”

Friedman also spoke about how the year 2007 saw developments that have caused the acceleration we see today — from Steve Jobs introducing the handheld technology, Facebook opening up its platform, Twitter going independent, arrival of cloud computing, Google buying YouTube and introducing Android and introduction of crypto coin. “We missed it because of the recession.” He prefers to call cloud computing as the super nova in his book. “It is nothing like a cloud,” he said. He said the three giant accelerators are market, Mother Nature and Moore’s law.

“The changes affect people, but also reshaping our world — politics, geopolitics, ethics and community.” He said the machines today have all the five senses. The changes are also reshaping workplaces. Technology is changing faster than a society can adapt to. He noted that the digital divide is disappearing and self-motivation divide is the big divide today Minister of Information Dr Abdulmunim al Hasani, presented him with a MIBF trophy. Thomas Friedman also signed copies of his book at the fair, being held at Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre.