The Critical Path

The Critical Path

The Critical Path is a talk show contemplating the causality of success and failure in the evolving story of mobile computing and related industries. Using Apple as a lens to look at existing and emerging tech markets, we try to understand what it means to be great.

Hosted by Horace Dediu, Anders Brownworth, and Judd Rubin.



#46: The Next Victim

July 18, 2012 at 11:30AM • 57 minutes

Dan and Horace cover the valuation question regarding Apple and tech in general as seen through investors' eyes. We also look at who is most vulnerable in the ongoing mobile computing disruption and who are the up-and-coming challengers. Finally, Horace introduces the Perspective app which he uses to do all his presentations and a new platform for publishing complex or rich data.


#45: Management vs. Leadership

July 11, 2012 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 11 minutes

We start with a discussion of RIM's latest quarterly performance and follow with a description of the inherent tension between managing and leading. To further illustrate this divergence we discuss the conflicting messages from Microsoft relative to the Surface.


#44: White Knights and White Nights

June 27, 2012 at 1:45PM • 1 hour 11 minutes

Dan and Horace reflect on the Osbourne effect of Windows Phone 8 on Nokia and how to value a company in distress. In particular, we talk about the potential of a Microsoft acquisition and the conditions needed to make it happen. Horace takes two reader questions: How did Samsung succeed while other vendors failed with Android and what are the pitfalls that could cause Apple to stumble.


#43: We'll take it from here

June 20, 2012 at 12:30PM • 59 minutes

Horace and Dan look at Microsoft's Surface through disruption colored lenses. First, the ongoing evolution of the computing value chain and how it foretold us of Surface. Second, how the economics of Microsoft's businesses makes Surface compelling. We also begin a new segment tentatively called "Reader Questions". This time it's education: is it disruptable? If so how can we tell and where will it lead us?


#42: Full Circle

June 13, 2012 at 12:30PM • 1 hour 20 minutes

Having just returned from China, Horace gives his impressions which leads to a discussion about industrialization and innovation and how countries "mature" and what is Apple doing in China and the new relationship between Apple and strategic partnerships and the new stats from WWDC 2012 about developer revenues and how that differs from Android and the 400 million Android devices activated vs. 400 million iOS devices built, in China.


#41: Contextual Inquiry

June 6, 2012 at 12:00PM • 53 minutes

Dan and Horace talk about the distinction between what Facebook is and what its value is perceived to be. We touch on both the opportunities and the challenges for social media and how these are reflected in the IPO. We note how and why Facebook integration in iOS might happen. Horace has a few words about China, WWDC, and the future of apps on TVs. It's all about context.


#40: Awaiting the Big Bang

May 30, 2012 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 3 minutes

This week, Horace follows up on his discussion of automobiles and road infrastructure by talking about how road networks were rebuilt in European countries to accommodate cycling. That leads to hints about the challenge of re-building energy infrastructure to support new power train technologies. Finally He and Dan also analyze comments made by Tim Cook at the recent D10 conference about Apple TV and disruption of the entertainment industry.


#39: The Locus of Power

May 23, 2012 at 1:00PM • 1 hour 5 minutes

Dan and Horace take a nostalgic trip through the automotive industry. Horace asks why should a 20 year old car (which he happens to own) be replaced? Why are cars built to be disposed of and why aren't they meaningfully improved based on new jobs to be done? In this episode we look at the auto industry as a proxy for other "network-based" industries which reach plateaus of innovation and can go no further. Plus, Horace challenges readers to guess what car he drives.


#38: Seeking Enlightenment

May 16, 2012 at 12:15PM • 59 minutes

Horace and Dan wade into Android Economics expanding on the series of posts on Asymco. We also give an update on The Critical Path Kickstarter project.


#37: Pathfinder I

May 9, 2012 at 12:00PM • 47 minutes

Horace and Dan talk about how the Critical Path (The First Year) ebook Kickstarter project began, and hint at an upcoming topic: how to analyze the Android market.