A great book by Douglas Smith and Robert Alexander called Fumbling the future: How Xerox invented, then ignored, the first personal computer. This book explains how Xerox failed to profit from all the amazing innovations developed at the company's computer technology lab, Xerox PARC. Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) was the epicenter of the digital computer revolution.
We have seen many examples of companies dropping the ball on game changing technologies and trends such as Kodak, Research in Motion, Nokia, and Blockbuster. But Xerox and PARC were great examples of mismanagement and arrogance. So let’s do a quick review of Xerox, PARC, and the personal computer.