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David Yoffie Tackles 5G Wireless

George Gilder

Posted March 25, 2021

George Gilder

Harvard Business School professor David Yoffie is teaching his students that their future hinges on 5G wireless.

It’s going to provide a hundred times faster links than the 4G we know, to a thousand times more devices. Like 4G before it — but far more explosive — 5G will enable entrepreneurial surprises galore.

His students better understand it better than their professor does or they will be left behind.

The wise guys think we’ll have cities run by robots even smarter than Mayors DeBlasio or Garcetti. We’ll have instantly reacting 3D games (who would have thunk it?) with holographic models.

We’ll have self-driving cars gossiping with each other on virtual real-time maps. We’ll have open heart and open brain telesurgeries and colonoscopies, which we’ll be able to watch in virtual reality streams.

We’ll have smart lights-out factories everywhere with no workers and lights-out-schools with no teachers. They’ll be run by teachers’ unions resting on endless 5G VR sabbatical beaches.

All industry will surf on high-energy short-range millimeter or near-millimeter waves.

“When 4G emerged,” Yoffie told the Wall Street Journal, “I was on the board of Intel, and we had no idea what kinds of applications would be possible in a 4G world besides more speed.

If anyone said we’d have Uber or have hundreds of millions of people streaming videos on their phones because of 4G, we would have shaken our head and said ‘Sure.’”

Hey, at the time some of us were predicting just these kinds of applications. But Harvard profs and Intel board princes will usually be the last to know.

Under blowhard half-witted President Lawrence Bacow, Harvard is now a vast vainglorious religious cult. Spending $300 million to bring climate change liturgies to all its departments, from literature to science, and 5G gender diversity to its already dimwitted classrooms and boardrooms.

Today’s Prophecy

Now Yoffie’s students suggest the usual games and remote surgeries and self-driving cars as likely results of 5G, while Yoffie himself focuses on “edge computing” and “smart cities.”

Likely they are wrong again.

As Yoffie may recall, Intel jumped the gun in the 1990s with their premature “Proshare.” It was an attempt to create Zoom-like teleconferencing under then wunderkind tech leader 25-year-old Pat Gelsinger. A protégé of then CEO Andrew Grove and chief designer of the 486 microprocessor, Gelsinger was chosen to lead this first Intel systems project back in 1993.

Grove and Gelsinger assumed that the telcos would welcome their new market with huge broadband deployments of fiber-to-the-home. As it turned out, the Cable companies laid most of the broadband fiber optics. Intel was left with a fancy Proshare and no telco pipes or waves to propagate it.

Now anointed as Intel CEO Gelsinger should remember this lesson.

More on this tomorrow…


George Gilder
Editor, Gilder's Daily Prophecy

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