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The New, New Thing

Techstination feature for Monday, February 26, 2001

The man most responsible for the Internet boom. I'm Fred Fishkin with Bloomberg Bootcamp. That man is Jim Clark... according to best selling author and journalist Michael Lewis. For a year and a half... .Lewis immersed himself in the life of Clark... and the result is a book titled "The New, New Thing." This new Lewis and Clark journey, so to speak, takes you into the mind of the former Stanford Associate Professor ... who was the founder and chairman of Silicon Graphics and Netscape... and more recently HealtheonWebMD...

"He was obsessed with what was going to happen next. More future oriented than any person I'd ever met. And what went with that was a complete disregard of the past. What happened yesterday was of no interest to him."

Lewis says in many ways Clark seems to be on a never ending quest to invent the future. Including, for better or worse... .the dot com boom and bust on Wall Street... .by going public with Netscape with no profits or revenues...

"He went and sold Wall Street on this idea and people followed in his footsteps. So the financial turmoil of the late 1990s really starts with Jim Clark. But more than that, Clark has had this weird ability to put his finger on ideas or technologies that the world is just about ready for."

The latest venture, WebMD... aims to revolutionize the entire health care industry. But Lewis has no doubt that Clark is already thinking about the new, new thing. Bootcamp, I'm Fred Fishkin, Bloomberg Radio.