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FCW : June 15, 2016
June 15, 2016 FCW.COM 19 it leads to “a higher calling” where employees and organi- zations benefit stakeholders and improve the world around them. Pontefract makes the case with stories from his own career journey and from other companies that have thrived by putting customers and employees first. Although the book is mainly geared toward a corporate audience rather than agency leaders locked in the federal bureaucracy, it offers sound advice to employees and managers alike about the importance of having a sense of purpose. — BIANCA SPINOSA Making your own luck NASA engineer Lonnie John- son invented the Super Soaker water gun. There wasn’t a plan — he stumbled on a powerful nozzle design, was captivated by the idea and ultimately changed the game for squirt guns. It was serendipity. Such is the story of count- less inventions. Yet with innova- tion on virtually every agency’s agenda, waiting around for inspiration to strike is hardly a promising strategy. What can be done to prime the serendip- ity pump? That question is the crux of Pagan Kennedy’s “Inventology: How We Dream Up Things That Change the World” — a book that visits with dozens of inven- tors and maps the patterns that might help others encourage epiphanies of their own. Kennedy explores far more than serendipity; deep expertise and sustained focus produce their share of brilliant inven- tions, too. But being open to discovery is a skill in itself, and “Inventology” just might pro- vide a technique that improves the odds. — TROY K. SCHNEIDER Inside the world of cybercrime Sometimes a reader needs a good old-fashioned crime story. And if that story happens to be true, is told by a former intel- ligence officer and teaches a great deal about modern cyber- crime, so much the better. David Locke Hall’s “CRACK99: The Takedown of a $100 Million Chinese Software Pirate” recounts his role as a federal prosecutor in uncovering and ultimately shutting down an online marketplace selling sto- len software that had military applications. The web of federal agencies that both collaborate and compete to fight online crime receive at least as much attention as the crime itself, but both aspects make the read worthwhile. — TROY K. SCHNEIDER BIANCA SPINOSA 0615fcw_014-019.indd 19 5/25/16 3:19 PM
May 30, 2016
June 30, 2016