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The generations' next wave is hitting the shore, and baby busters may soon feel overtaken by the surge. While most attenders at the Generation X convention in Orlando plotted to reach the Starbucks society (those born between 1965 and 1980), a few leaders warned X-ers to look over their shoulders. Today's youth group is entering college, turning 20, and defying many of our assumptions based on those just a few years their senior.

Generation X, with its aimless, hopeless, extreme sensibility, is mostly an American culture, but their wired successors are a global phenomenon. The world is a much smaller place for them. They have lived most of their lives at warp speed with cyber freedom. And similar characteristics are showing up in their age group in many cultures.

Even with school shootings and the overall devaluation of life, society has embraced these kids. Their parents were more involved in their upbringing than Gen-Xers' parents were. Their childhoods were "The Lion King" years.

And they're ...

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