"House of cards" book details weaknesses of global economy

Very interesting read, and the 921 Earthquake in Taiwan is used as an example!

[quote]In Lynn’s view, being highly networked and specialized creates dangerous new vulnerabilities. As an example of what can go wrong, Lynn cites an earthquake that occurred in Taiwan in September 1999. Taiwan is the world’s No. 1 source of made-to-order advanced semiconductors – the microchips that are the brains of iPods, DVD players, computer graphics cards, cellphones and countless other electronic devices. Although the handful of factories that manufacture such chips were not seriously damaged by the quake, power and transportation systems in Taiwan were severely disrupted for a week. The ripple effect of that turned out to be an economic tsunami of sorts for the global high-tech economy.

“The one-week shutdown in Taiwan cut world output of electronics by 7 percent below predictions, just in the month of October, and disruptions continued well into the new year,” reports Lynn. Factories in California – including some that assembled computers for Dell – had to shut down their assembly lines

a review: salon.com/books/review/2005/ … index.html