The best way to predict the future is to invent it.
This is the story of one of history’s most talented technology teams.
From the first smartphones to social media, e-commerce and even emojis, the ideas that now dominate the tech industry and our day-to-day lives were born at General Magic, a 1989 Silicon Valley startup that most of us haven't heard of.
General Magic, the upcoming documentary, is a tale of how great vision and epic failure can change the world. The film features members of the original Mac team along with the creators of the iPhone, Android and eBay.
These designers, engineers and entrepreneurs saw the future decades before it happened. General Magic captures the spirit of those of us who dare to dream big and the life-changing consequences when we fail, fail again, fail better, and ultimately succeed.
Apple launches the Macintosh and transforms the way we use computers.
A company called General Magic is spun out from Apple to transform how we use a telephone.
General Magic ships one of the first handheld wireless personal communicator— what today we call a smartphone.
From mobile computing, social media, downloadable apps and e-commerce to touchscreens, emoji and USB, the products and services that now dominate the tech industry and our day-to-day lives were born at General Magic.
But this was before the Web, before 3G, before Google, before even those bricklike mobile phones were in every pocket.
The technology, networks and online content that make an iPhone possible today just weren’t there in 1994. Neither were the users—not yet.
But although General Magic failed, the vision, the concepts and the people who pioneered them went on to change everything.
It’s 2017. The iPhone X has just been released. eBay sell a quarter of a billion dollars worth of goods every day. And anywhere, anytime communication is now on our wrists. Each of these incredible world changing feats has been shaped by a Magician.
But instead of the masters achieving these feats, it was the apprentices who went on to really change the world. They took the vision and the lessons learned at General Magic and went on to found eBay, develop Android, create the iPod, iPhone and Apple Watch, and eventually, lead digital transformation from within The White House.