The trend that we are most interested in is a trend that has the possibility of creating a big wave. We want to find the trend that has the possibility of creating investment, product or corporate opportunities from which business or sales can occur.


A trend can cause many waves. The trend to high density digital circuits has spawned many waves of technology products including mainframe and tablet computers. A trend is a long term set of events that develop fundamental capabilities. A wave is a set of products that spin out of a trend. Unfortunately, it may take a long time for a wave to gestate. But a strong technology trend will probably set up a series of waves. And, you probably cannot foresee all of the variations that will derive from the basic technology. Again, look at the development and manufacture of the first transistor and one of its resultant products – the transistor radio.


There are always windows opening up and you probably need to catch only one to really position yourself for a great life. On the other hand, professional investors and investment bankers need to catch a lot of such windows to stay on top of their game and bring in the big windfalls necessary to support their lifestyle.


When something is too popular and it is the talk of the town - watch out for the bubbles! Greed takes a long time to simmer. Fear is instantaneous and we can get burnt quickly. There is an old expression which fits here - don't try to catch a falling knife.

Summary of Overall Concepts

Trends, Waves, Windows & Bubbles is a book about technology big waves.It’s the third in a series (the first two were Big Wave Surfing and Do Not Invent Buggy Whips ) looking at how technology moves from the research lab and into viable products. This book looks at how to spot, not necessarily create, a wave. For a variety of reasons, not everyone can create a disruptive technology wave. However, there is no reason that you cannot profit from waves created by others. If you can spot a wave, you can profit.


…page 2

A classic example of a trend is Moore’s Law. Simply stated Moore’s Law says that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles every two years. A variation of this law says that speed and performance of a chip doubles approximately every 18 months.

…page 4

The great investor Peter Lynch of Fidelity investments used to walk around shopping centers as a way to detect and understand new long-term trends in retailing and thus get new stock purchase ideas.



…pg 41

Consider the simple development of the transistor. The development of the transistor created a trend of developing and implementing smaller, denser, more powerful and more reliable electronic devices. The building blocks (transistors, integrated circuits, microprocessors and programmable logic arrays—to name a few developments of note) that form these devices came in waves of technology innovation. And, you did not (and even today do not) have to be a pioneer in the electronics business to “profit” from the waves of technology innovation spun out of the transistor revolution.

…pg 50

Like the general population, designers become creatures of habit and over time they tend to grow more and more conservative in their designs. It is a very rare designer that can change and succeed for more than a couple of design cycles and thus be a significant factor in multiple technology waves.



…pg 90

That is the problem with windows of opportunity. To succeed the timing must be right. You cannot be too early or too late. Either case is the kiss of death.

…pg. 108

Even more interesting are situations when a company misses an opportunity, sees how big the opportunity is, and then tries to enter the market. One of the best examples of this was Microsoft who missed the initial Internet wave and has been trying for years to catch up.



…pg. 121

Assuming that we are in the game, we face the Prophet/Doctor of Doom. Yes he exists and he is more than a comic book character. The stronger a trend, the bigger the wave (and the more spin-outs of trends and waves) and more windows of opportunity, the bigger the bubble will be.

…pg. 131

Tulips, although they had less intrinsic value, had a similar situation from 1636-1637. It was considered to be the first recorded financial bubble. Speculators pushed Tulip bulb prices to record heights before they collapsed and plunged the Dutch economy into a severe crisis that lasted for many years.