ROUTE 128

LESSONS FROM BOSTON'S HIGH-TECH COMMUNITY

A funny thing happened to Lamp and Rosegrant (both former Business Week reporters) on their way to writing a book about the so-called ``Massachusetts Miracle''—a two-decade economic expansion sparked by high-tech enterprises clustered along Route 128, which encircles Boston. When they began their reporting in 1985, the Bay State's business activity was nearing a cyclical peak; by 1988, though, the regional boom had become a bust with national implications. Undaunted, the authors persevered and produced a thoughtful appraisal of what has made this New England enclave a hotbed of innovation. To gain perspective, Lampe (now assistant director of MIT's Industrial Liaison Program) and Rosegrant (now a free-lance writer) examine the interactive forces that have helped shape Route 128's high-tech community over the better part of a century. To begin with, they point out, eastern Massachusetts has an education/research infrastructure second to none; its extensive network of world-class universities, hospitals, laboratories, and related facilities remains a magnet for talented students, professors, and scientists eager to test their mettle in demanding environments. No one set out to create a high-tech mecca in metropolitan Boston, the authors insist; it simply evolved as a result of fruitful alliances among local industry, federal agencies, and indigenous institutions before, during, and after WW II. Critical mass was reached during the early 1970's (with the dawn of the minicomputer age), and Route 128 now sustains itself (via start-up or spin-off firms, for example) while supporting a wealth of service providers—patent attorneys, venture capitalists, et al. Nor did state government play a substantive role either in triggering the onset of the Massachusetts Miracle or in cushioning the impact of its recession, the authors observe, concluding that the system seems to work best when not overmanaged. An expert audit of Silicon Valley East, highlighting the contributions of entrepreneurs like Digital Equipment's Ken Olsen and of scholastic promoters like MIT's Vannevar Bush.

Pub Date: June 17, 1992

ISBN: 0-465-04639-8

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Basic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 1992

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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