IT'S NEARLY 14 MONTHS SINCE BILL GATES'S The Road Ahead hit the stores. In Internet Time--the speeded-up pace at which the Net is driving changes in technology and Silicon Valley business strategy--that's almost a decade. So it's high time for an update. Sure enough, a heavily revised new edition came out in November. It's now No.8 on BUSINESS WEEK's paperback best-seller list.

A year of living by the Internet clock has focused Gates's thinking about the Net and other Information Age issues, resulting in a far better book. The original tended toward garden-variety speculation on the direction and impact of the Information Revolution. Appearing just as Gates's Microsoft Corp. was scrambling to come to grips with the Net, The Road Ahead seemed determinedly out of touch with reality: It acknowledged the phenomenal rise of the Internet but treated it as one of many interesting developments in a future flooded with all sorts of interactive networks.

The new Road Ahead comes down to earth in important ways: In a new introduction, Gates admits he had underestimated the Net while pursuing technologies such as interactive TV networks. Chapter 5 is one of four wholly rewritten ones that make clear that the Internet is the road ahead and that Gates is now giving it his best thinking. That may justify another update soon. Better yet, what about a permanent, continuously updated Road Ahead Web site?


1 THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE by Scott Adams (HarperBusiness $20) The revenge of the cubicle dwellers.

2 DOGBERT'S TOP SECRET MANAGEMENT HANDBOOK by Scott Adams (HarperBusiness $16) Biting observations from a top dog.

3 AGAINST THE GODS by Peter L. Bernstein (Wiley $27.95) Risk management in the making of the modern world.

4 FORBES GREATEST BUSINESS STORIES OF ALL TIME by Daniel Gross and the editors of Forbes magazine (Wiley $24.95) From McCormick's reaper to Sam Walton's store.

5 ONLY THE PARANOID SURVIVE by Andrew S. Grove (Currency $27.50) Intel's CEO describes how to turn crises into moments of opportunity.

6 NUTS! by Kevin Freiberg and Jackie Freiberg (Bard Press $24.95) Southwest Airlines' personality and flight plan for success.

7 WALL STREET MONEY MACHINE by Wade B. Cook (Lighthouse Publishing $24.95) Formulas to help you strike it rich.

8 THE MOTLEY FOOL INVESTMENT GUIDE by David and Tom Gardner (Simon & Schuster $24) An online investment duo puts it on paper.

9 FINANCIAL PEACE by Dave Ramsey (Viking $21.95) How to get out of debt--for good.

10 WHAT WORKS ON WALL STREET by James P. O'Shaughnessy (McGraw-Hill $29.95) A statistical look at how investment strategies stack up.

11 MISSION POSSIBLE by Ken Blanchard and Terry Waghorn (McGraw-Hill $22) Using untapped human energy to charge up your organization.

12 HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT A PENIS by Karen Salmansohn (Harmony $21) No, it's not about castrati.

13 THE DIGITAL ECONOMY by Don Tapscott (McGraw-Hill $24.95) How the Infobahn is changing business.

14 THE BEARDSTOWN LADIES' GUIDE TO SMART SPENDING FOR BIG SAVINGS by the Beardstown Ladies' Investment Club with Robin Dellabough (Hyperion $19.95) Penny-pinching, from appliances to rental cars.

15 THE WITCH DOCTORS by John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge (TimesBusiness $25) Sorting out the true management gurus from the fakers.


1 THE SEVEN HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE by Stephen R. Covey (Fireside $12) Habitually popular.

2 THE 1997 WHAT COLOR IS YOUR PARACHUTE? by Richard Nelson Bolles (Ten Speed Press $16.95) The enduring job-search bible--with a new resource guide.

3 FIRST THINGS FIRST by Stephen R. Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca R. Merrill (Fireside $14) Managing your time by balancing your life.

4 GET A FINANCIAL LIFE by Beth Kobliner (Fireside $11) Hey, Gen-Xers--mutual funds and mortgages can be fun!

5 PERSONAL FINANCE FOR DUMMIES by Eric Tyson (IDG Books $16.95) Lighthearted primer.

6 THE BEARDSTOWN LADIES' COMMON-SENSE INVESTMENT GUIDE by the Beardstown Ladies' Investment Club with Leslie Whitaker (Hyperion $10.95) Recipes for Four-Bean Salad, Five-Hour Stew--and 23% returns.

7 THE TRUTH ABOUT MONEY by Ric Edelman (Georgetown University Press $19.95) How to plan and invest, according to a financial columnist.

8 THE ROAD AHEAD by Bill Gates with Nathan Myhrvold and Peter Rinearson (Penguin $15.95) Microsoft's chief on the implications of the I-way, in a ''completely revised'' edition.

9 1001 WAYS TO REWARD EMPLOYEES by Bob Nelson (Workman $8.95) Give them a champagne brunch, a casual-dress day--or plain old cash.

10 J.K. LASSER'S YOUR INCOME TAX 1997 by the J.K. Lasser Institute (Macmillan $14.95) Get ready, here it comes.

11 THE WAVE 3 WAY TO BUILDING YOUR DOWNLINE by Richard Poe (Prima $14.95) Further tips on network marketing.

12 YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin (Penguin $11.95) To achieve financial independence, restructure your life.

13 INVESTING FOR DUMMIES by Eric Tyson, MBA (IDG Books $19.95) From stocks to small business--with cartoons, too.

14 THE WALL STREET JOURNAL GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDING MONEY AND INVESTING by Kenneth M. Morris and Alan M. Siegel (Fireside $13.95) Concise explanations enriched with graphics.

15 THE ONE MINUTE MANAGER by Kenneth Blanchard PhD and Spencer Johnson M.D. (Berkley $9.95) Three management techniques, conveyed in brief story form.

BUSINESS WEEK's Best-Seller List is based on a survey of chain and independent booksellers that carry a broad selection of books on economics, management, sales and marketing, small business, investing, personal finance, and careers. Well over 1,000 retail outlets nationwide are represented. Current rankings are based on a weighted analysis of unit sales in December.

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Updated June 15, 1997 by bwwebmaster
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