Tools and Weapons

By Brad Smith, Carol Ann Browne,

Book cover of Tools and Weapons: The Promise and the Peril of the Digital Age

Book description

The New York Times bestseller, now updated with new material on cyber attacks, digital sovereignty, and tech in a pandemic.

From Microsoft's president and one of the tech industry's broadest thinkers, a frank and thoughtful reckoning with how to balance enormous promise and existential risk as the digitization of everything…

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Why read it?

2 authors picked Tools and Weapons as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Microsoft president Brad Smith’s thoughtful book is basically about responsibility in the digital age.

Smith takes an approach that is different from most corporate executive books in that he calls out the threats represented by digital technology his company is built on rather than trying to sugarcoat them.

Then he suggests responsible steps that everyone – individuals, public policy, and companies like his – should take to mitigate those threats.

From Tom's list on today’s roadmap to tomorrow.

Brad Smith is the president of Microsoft, a lawyer who designed and drove Microsoft’s legal strategy during the anti-trust suit in the 1990s. (I should also mention he was my undergraduate classmate at Princeton University—though I’ve not seen him in decades.) Smith co-authored the book with Carol Ann Browne, Microsoft’s Senior Director of Communications. Most big tech companies see themselves as historically unique, allergic to discussing risk, regulation, responsibility, or self-restraint. I assumed this book would follow suit; but I was wrong. It’s honest, balanced, and full of historical references to earlier technologies, such as railroads, electricity, the telegraph, and…

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