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Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone

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Max The Magnificent
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
Max The Magnificent   3/26/2011 4:41:34 PM
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Well, it's been a long time coming, but finally here's my answer to the person who originally recommended this book to me (see my original blog http://bit.ly/ecqQWl)

zeeglen
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
zeeglen   3/26/2011 5:31:37 PM
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Many will the remember the "Carl & Jerry" series by John T. Frye in Popular Electronics magazine starting in 1954. Two fictional high school kids experimenting and constructing electronic circuits in their garage workshop and lab, similar to Bill's and Daves's beginnings. I wonder if by any chance Bill and Dave unknowingly inspired the Carl & Jerry stories.

Max The Magnificent
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
Max The Magnificent   3/26/2011 6:01:16 PM
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That's an interesting thought -- as you say, maybe Bill and Dave did inspire these cartoons (check out this Carl and Jerry site http://bit.ly/heFq9W)

Brian Fuller2
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
Brian Fuller2   3/28/2011 4:50:10 PM
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We lionize these gents and for good reason, but I have to wonder how their management style would have differed in today's environment--hit the quarterly numbers for Wall Street now. That's all that matters. Something tells me they probably would have taken HP private again had that environment stifled them.

David Ashton
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
David Ashton   3/29/2011 6:44:10 AM
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HP test equipment was always of the most amazing quality. Just shows what can be achieved without bean counters around. Have a look at http://users.monash.edu.au/~ralphk/hp-counter.html About a guy who retrieved a wet old HP counter of 1963 vintage from a dumpster and dried it out and it just worked. 50 MHz, all transistors, no ICs, nixie display, and could go up to 3 GHz (in 1963!) with plugins. I used to swear by the old HP RPL calculators too. Somehow "Agilent" doesn't have the same ring to it, though their equipment is also good gear. I must read this book, sounds like a great read, thanks Max.

mkr0
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
mkr0   3/29/2011 9:42:46 AM
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Interesting. Although english is not my first language, i've managed to go through 'The Soul of a New Machine' and it really got me hooked. I need to get my hands on this one too. It would be interesting to confront what it says abouth ' disastrous years under Carly Fiorina' with the 'Tough Choices. Memoir' by... Carly Fiorina.

Max The Magnificent
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
Max The Magnificent   3/29/2011 1:20:23 PM
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I loved "The Soul of a New Machine". I haven't read "Tough Choices" by Carly Fiorina and at the moment I have so many things on my "reading list" that I won;t get to thsi for ages. If you read the "Bill and Dave" book, it would be great if you could contrast the two perspectives for us.

GOOD LIFE
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
GOOD LIFE   4/12/2011 5:03:42 PM
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JOINED THE CO. IN 1962. CAME FROM WISCONSIN WHERE GOOD JOBS WERE HARD TO FIND. THOUGHT I WAS IN HEAVEN WHEN I LANDED AT HP. BILL AND DAVE(sometimes called pappy) WERE TWO OF THE FINEST GENTLEMEN IN THE INDUSTRIAL WORLD. THEY WERE AVAILABLE TO ANY EMPLOYEE WHO MAY HAVE THOUGHT THEY HAD A PROBLEM THAT COULD ONLY BE SOLVED BY DIRECTLY MEETING THEM FACE TO FACE. THEIR OFFICES WERE ALWAYS OPEN TO ALL EMPLOYEES. I AM NOW 80 YEARS OLD, RETIRED AFTER 30 YEARS AND LOOK BACK WITH GREAT SATISFACTION AT THE TIME I WAS HONORED TO BE WITH SUCH A WONDERFUL ORGANIZATION.

lifewingmate
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
lifewingmate   4/26/2011 4:34:58 AM
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Clive, Thank you for recommending this book. I've never heard of it. I'm interested in reading it as a story that confirms Malcom Gladwell's book, Outliers, The Story of Success. When you mentioned that they allowed the storerooms to be unlocked so that engineers could experiment, it immediately reminded me of the opportunity given to the young Bill Gates who was allowed to use a computer lab sponsored by a mom's organization at his school. These nuances in management style are what make the difference in building organizations that become scalable multi-national organizations. I wanted to add to the admiration of HP products as well. When I got my first job, I took on an extra internship to pay for my first HP laptop in 2005. I still use that laptop today!

Max The Magnificent
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re: Book Review: Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World's Greatest Company by Michael S. Malone
Max The Magnificent   4/26/2011 1:46:10 PM
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Hi there -- my Wife bought me Outliers by Malcom Gladwell -- since then I've read several of his books -- they are all extremely interesting and very well written -- I have them in the pile in my office waiting for some time to write reviews of them ...

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