cover image The Email Revolution: Unleashing the Power to Connect

The Email Revolution: Unleashing the Power to Connect

V.A. Shiva Ayyadurai. Skyhorse/Allworth Press, $24.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-62153-263-7

MIT systems scientist, technologist, and entrepreneur Ayyadurai boldly claims to have invented the world’s first e-mail system as a 14-year-old tech prodigy in 1978, though this claim, despite being emblazoned on the book’s cover, hasn’t been met with universal consensus. Although various forms of e-mail date back to the 1960s, widespread public use took off in the 1990s. A generation later, the author feels common practice often falls far short of the technology’s potential. After covering his own version of the history of e-mail, Ayyadurai (who has created software for companies such as Nike and Procter & Gamble) moves on to more general topics, providing examples of how some organizations in the private and public worlds have wielded the technology skillfully while others have fumbled. The author discusses e-mail’s unique strengths and provides wide-ranging advice for people seeking to improve their e-mail skills. Cynics may find this book to be a mix of the dubious and obvious. 40 b&w illus. (Oct.)