You know... it seems that Boomers are in the news a lot these days, maybe it's because their first cohort is hitting 60 this year or maybe one of the last few, and it's true that there are a lot of Boomers when compared to the generation that preceded them. And most discussion talks about what that initial wave does as it hits the shore.
But the truth is that there's a generation that follows the Boomers, Generation X, that's at least as big. What happens when GenX takes over the secular leadership vacated by Boomers as they enter retirement? Isn't that, also, a story worth telling?
In fact, it turns out that there are more GenX any way you count it... except if you count the Boom to be the 18 year period from 1946-64 and GenX the 16 (or, often, fewer) years afterwards (1965-81), which is the way that the demographics people count it, based on volume of births and no other justification for labelling a group of people a "generation."
I even ran the data removing the contentious years and ensuring that the two groups have the same number of cohorts. The most conservative one: that Boomers were from 1946-59 and GenX from 1965-78, shows GenX just barely edging out the Boomers in numbers. A more reasonable 17 year generation where Boomers run from 1943-60 and GenX from 1964-81, which reflects Strauss & Howe data while omitting disputed transition generations, shows that there are a lot more GenX than Boomers.
If you take a look at the data (.pdf) using Strauss and Howe's culture-based rather than birthrate-based differentiation of "generational culture," GenX is clearly very dominant, as it throws those swing 1961-63 cohorts back into GenX.
(I used 2000 US Census data, NOT birth data; the Census reflects the number of people in those generations who live in the U.S. now; I feel that number is more apropos with respect to the idea that Boomers are influential because of the sheer number of them. Some people in the U.S. Census data might be emigrants, and not identify at all with U.S.-born generational cohorts, of course.)
So, where's the story about what happens when GenX takes the reins? Are Google and eBay so transformative because they tapped into a zeitgeist that represented the generation following the Boom in a positive way?