Flip Camera Embodies Year of YouTube

A few years ago, Scott McNealy, longtime CEO of Sun Microsystems, when asked about preservation of personal information, famously said, "You have no privacy; get over it." The comment appears more prescient every day.

Clearly, the changes that will emerge from this impending explosion of pocket video cameras, the good and the less good, won't change our world in the near term. However, just as the wide adoption of the text-based, consumer Internet dramatically expanded access to information, the way we communicate and how we conduct commerce, the adoption of easily produce-able, readily accessible, consumer video will likely lead to immense change in how we chat, shop, work and in the extreme, behave in public.

Once again, it is difficult to predict anything but the scale of the societal changes likely to arise from a small, seemingly innocuous advance in technology.

In the meantime, if you're still looking for holiday gift ideas, get a jump on the future, beat the rush and find a Flip. In five years, we'll all wonder how we all got by without them.

Lise Buyer, a longtime Silicon Valley investor, is a principal at the Class V Group, www.classvgroup.com

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