The trick is to be one of the Barons when networks are becoming widespread, and not an early innovator who gets in the history books but dies penniless. (Again fits with the railroad analogy.)
(And yes, trusted computation [DRM] as it is practiced now is bad, in the way that many things only possessed by only the powerful are also bad.)
A great sign for this idea, is that it gets pooh-poohed and shouted down, particularly by people who don't even hear the entire thing and just pattern match the security part. The idea that DRM can be useful and beneficial to society as a whole is precisely "What You Can't Say" for large swathes of the tech community and even more mainstream society.
Now, it's a console with some good games, but I wouldn't rate it as equivalent in social impact to electricity or nuclear weapons.
A real computing device (I'd accept tablets, but really, enterprise desktops and especially servers) would be entirely different.
What I really care about is servers which can be trusted to be "fair" by all parties -- server operators, software operators, and end users. There is absolutely nothing like that today, and it's impossible without trusted computing. It's unclear if trusted computing itself is feasible (it's theoretically possible).
If it works, we end up with Vernor Vinge's _True Names_