Building a World that Lasts

A few days, a couple of plane rides and two cities ago, Jeff and I had the chance to visit one of the most profound companies I have ever witnessed: Ericsson. Perhaps this should not be surprising, as the telecommunication giant has played a pivotal role in developing some of the most important technological innovations of the past century, including the telephone, the cellular phone, the touch-screen tablet computer and, most importantly, the infrastructure to make it all work.

The latest ideas? Nothing big… just using humans as wires and conductors. Data transfer through the electrical current that runs within you every second of every day. Trees hard-wired to the electrical grid through the soil. 800 gigabyte per second data downloads. And of course, high-speed, usable Wi-Fi the world over.

The trick with Ericsson is that they think ahead, in the goal of creating a world that lasts. For this is a culture with history, as we’ve seen on the city streets of Stockholm and Gothenburg, and in the 800 year-old cathedrals of the walled Viking village of Visby. Sweden is the definition of sustainability. And with more people requiring more data, they are using technology it to their upmost advantage. Leif Ericson would be interested to know that new frontiers don’t have to always be to the West… they could be above us in the branches, or right under our skin.