Today we are going to tell you about how bad things can paradoxically have some positive consequences, too.
The two stories and facts below are from IT domain, of course, but wise men say the pattern is universal.
Have you ever heard about the dot-com bubble?
It happened not so long ago, just some 15 years now and it was a financial crash with global efffects that followed after about 4 years of investment frenzy, generated (as always) by people’s mirage to get rich fast.
Financial bubbles aren’t new, they appeared centuries ago eversince the organized public financing was first invented.
This particular bubble originated in the rising of the internet, the most promising future to invest in: by the mid-90’s many internet-centered Companies such as Netscape, Yahoo or Amazon.com became tremendously successful very fast thus starting the general appetite for investments in internet.
But soon appetite turned to greed, investments turned to speculations and reason turned to madness so huge flows of money got to flood this particular business in such a way that its values and figures became bogus, allowing ridiculous and unprecedented transactions to happen to such extend that simply creating a new Company having « .Com » within its name was enough to attract interest and funds, even if having no profit or revenues at all.
Sadly in March 2000 everything came to a predictable end, the bubble bursting-out and starting a financial earthquake that profoundly affected not only the US economy but other economies as well, most notably Asian and European.
For USA only the losses in the market value of companies exceeded 5 trillion dollars (2000 to 2002) causing drama almost everywhere, either directly or indirectly.
And yet, besides the « shock and awe » effects, the .com rush have generated some positive effects too.
An easy to grasp one is that the crisis operated a selection within internet Companies, causing the false-value ones to disappear.
Another logical effect is, once lucidity got back in place, most of the further investments were more rationally made into Companies with proven value such as Google.
But the most important (and also the less known) positive effect was that, in its growth years, the « .com » rush pushed and forced the global internet infrastructure to develop at tremendous rates in amazingly short amount of time.
Some say that without the .com bubble it would have taken 15 years for the internet infrastructure to reach the same technological parameters it reached in only 5 years during the bubble growth.
Thus, the .com bubble allowed one fast big leap forward instead of many small, slow steps (that might have lead to apathy and delay alongside with their consequences) allowing the internet to gain the speed for takeoff.
The other story is about ummm … porn.
No secret for anyone, the human race have always had a special taste for depicting sex since its very beginings.
Starting with drawings on caves’ walls and up to nowadays, sex was illustrated on all possible supports throughout the entire human civilisation: stone carvings, paintings, texts, photography, films, video-tapes, digital supports, you name it.
This unquestionably biggest interest of the overall human society led to the formation of a specialized industry by the end of the XX-th century.
And with huge powers over visual-related technologies, too.
Quick example: during the 80’s, there were 2 standards on the market for home videocassette recorders: VHS (released by JVC) and Betamax (released by Sony), their competition leading to what was later called « the videotape format war ».
Well, the simple fact that the « adult entertainment industry » opted for the VHS format sealed the fate of Betamax, which soon dissapeared while VHS became global standard.
Later on and for exactly the same reason, the Blu-ray disc format was worldwide adopted while its competitor the HD DVD became extinct.
With these kind of powers, when it comes to the internet, the porn industry got notorious for being a massive spammer, for being the biggest vehicle for malware dissemination or for using other dirty tricks such as pop-ups, pop-unders or mousetrapping.
However, believe it or not, this military invention named ‘internet’ was in many respects grown and partially shaped by the porn industry.
And not by making investments in technology researches.
Instead, its huge influence resulting from people’s eagerness for newer sex-related experiences forced broadband development, stimulated creation and development of video streaming, pioneered video-chat technologies, traffic optimization, wireless content delivery and even geo-location software.
And the name of the game being « money », in order to cash-in revenues from the internet area, the adult industry inevitably also pioneered electronic billing and online payment systems, digital rights management, marketing affiliation and website memberships and subscriptions.
So even if it didn’t invent anything at all, the adult industry forced some inventions to get better, faster and bigger.
Size seems to sometimes matter after all!
By telling the stories above we, of course, didn’t imply that bad things are required to happen in order to generate good consequences or that dark sides of the human nature such as greed or obscenity are a ‘must’ in order to push things forwards.
But it’s just so common that good things produce good output.
And among millions of examples, here we are, making good products for developers and for the general public, for free or for the best price on the market and having happy users makes us continue improving further.
But if you disagree on that one, just let us know, we’re interested in the negative of the positive too !
See you next week!
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