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Web Turns 25: 10 Graphics To See
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matinintoronto
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matinintoronto,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 12:43:43 PM
Huge advance has come with an unintended cost
Centuries ago the world was represented on maps with a centre somewhere ... Jerusalem, Mecca, London.  Maps and routes were carefully and jealously guarded, kept secret in rutters and company or imperial vaults. People who had access to these secrets could have an enlarged vision of the world, themselves and their place (literally and figureatively) in and on it.

Now the centre is ME ...each person who has access to the net becomes the centre of their own world, and defines it as they choose (subject to advertising, I suppose!).  This has both enabled us and disabled us at the same time.  We may now hear about events, places, things and trends, but are more and more dis-associated from them except in a superficial way because of a diminishment of a shared vision or experience that put us all, individually or our group, in a place that was relative to other places.

There certainly is something to be said for understanding the world in ways that are not exclusively rooted in ME.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 1:38:45 PM
Re: Huge advance has come with an unintended cost
I must say, I love the part about the amount of social junk floating around on the web today. Really, who could have thought that would ever happen?

It's a social construct that we have created ourselves, a new form of passive entertainment sure to supplant that of television at some point in time. 
matinintoronto
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matinintoronto,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 8:40:37 PM
Re: Huge advance has come with an unintended cost
Daniel, I think the part that is the largest shift in all of this is the lack of understanding, by many, many users, that the world does not actually revolve around them (personally).  The ME-centre has infantilised many users, lacking (as they seem to do) any understanding that they are merely part of a larger whole (or larger part of something), and that not everything one puts on the net creates value for everyone else.

I am not in favour of a return to a formalised structure that 'kept everyone in their place' (such as religion tries to do, for a non-exclusive example), but it seems we need some sort of much larger, more expansive, education that helps kids and young adults start to seriously find their place as part of a larger whole, and their best efforts and thoughts and work may make things better for all.

At the same time, with care, one of the most wonderfful and democratic developments in society as a result of both the web and the internet is the slow breaking down of caste and class.  The ability to be somewhat, or completely, anonymous has a HUGE advantage in this area.

Best wishes from Toronto on a blowy, snowy, blustery night ...

Martin
AndrewO330
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AndrewO330,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 12:47:23 PM
It goes back a lot further than that.
Although Tim Berners-Lee gets the credit, much of the underlying innovation that we know as the "World Wide Web" goes back a lot further.  The origin of the idea of linked text and images probably lies with Vannevar Bush, who suggested the idea in an article titled "As We Will Think" in 1945.  His "memex" was based on automated (we'd say computerized) microfilm machines that switched from one fiche to another when you selected a link.

Later, Ted Nelson coined the word "hypertext" and, because computers filled rooms, not pockets,  envisioned a nation-wide set of information outlets, kind of like McDonalds for information, where you could drive up and get access to hyperlinked information.  He called his project Xanadu, and when I took a class with him at Swarthmore (his alma mater) in 1975/6 he already had it pretty well defined.

Tim Berners-Lee deserves credit for creating the structure that helped make the Web a reality, but let's not forget the others whose work he built upon.
Somedude8
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Somedude8,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 1:11:17 PM
Bigger Images?
Interesting article. It would have been cool to be able to click to larger versions of some of those images. Legends and such were too small to make out on some. I tried clicking them but that just gets me a new window of the same page.
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 7:10:08 PM
Re: Bigger Images?
@Somedude8

I think it has to do with your browser or perhaps you have something like NoScript going on. Because when I click on the link, it opens a new window (a different website) where the full size image is.

And yes, great article
Somedude8
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Somedude8,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 7:20:12 PM
Re: Bigger Images?
How strange. I tried Chrome, FF and Internet Exploder, all the same. Win7.
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 10:23:40 PM
Re: Bigger Images?
@Somedude8

If you click on the link below the paragraph/description (it says something like image credit), it'll open a new page where the images are. I hope it helps
gfcorbett
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gfcorbett,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 1:38:46 PM
WWW
Let's also give credit to the U.S. Government and DOD.  I started using the Web in 1970 to write curvefit programs at NASA Ames on what was termed "Darpanet."  Government agencies, institutions and universities had access.  Berners et al made it accessible to the masses.
ANON1245980384322
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ANON1245980384322,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 1:42:31 PM
Re: WWW
Using the "web" in 1970 would quite a trick, since it wasn't invented until 1989.  I think you meant you were using the Internet in 1970.  Commonly confused, the Web and Internet are not the same.
dwebb608
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dwebb608,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/12/2014 | 2:45:48 PM
Re: WWW
"The Web" didn't just suddenly happen in 1989 (nor was it "invented" by Al Gore).  What happened then is that a structure and a name was given to what was already in existance (highly-interconnected infrastructure, the concept of hypertext links, etc.).  The Internet didn't exist back in 1970, either.  Its ancestor (ARPANET) did.  It has been a gradual evolution involving many inventions over the years with the origin in the development of TCP that allowed multiple widely separate computer systems to communicate.  If you look back to the age of the original progenitors, the Web would be eligible for AARP membership.
WKash
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WKash,
User Rank: Author
3/12/2014 | 1:51:44 PM
TCP and the Internet
No question, Tim Berners-Lee's work launched the Web as we've come to know it -- but as many will add, what he created stands on the shoulders of those who helped create the Arpanet.

I've had the good fortune to spend time with both Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn. Hearing them retell their stories still evokes a certain awe. It's hard to fully fathom what we do online and on our smartphones today began with the discovery of how to harness packet switching -- that made it possible for heterogeneous computers to talk to each other through a single common packet-switched network.

They showed how it was possible to create a neary infinite number of different heterogeneous packet-switched nets, as Cerf called them, to interconnect with each other as if it was all one big giant network. As Cerf later put it, "TCP (transmission control protocol) is the thing that makes the Internet the Internet."  

Hail and Happy Anniversary to Berners-Lee for unleashing the Internet for the rest of the world to use.
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
3/12/2014 | 4:00:35 PM
Re: TCP and the Internet
I'm inclined to agree, Wyatt. TCP/IP should be celebrated too.
RobPreston
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RobPreston,
User Rank: Author
3/12/2014 | 3:04:49 PM
The 13%
I'm going to print up a T-shirt for my mother: One Of The Proud 13%
FlyBoy111
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FlyBoy111,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/13/2014 | 7:50:56 AM
Re: The 13%
It's never too late Rob ... helped a 92 year old get her first e-mail account about 7 years ago ... 99 and still going strong!
SaneIT
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SaneIT,
User Rank: Ninja
3/14/2014 | 8:48:03 AM
Re: The 13%
I'm up to get one of those T-shirts.  It amazes me that it was 20 years ago I was setting up a corporate modem pool in Netware 4.1 so we could browse the web from any desktop in the company.  I remember talks about what we could use this new tool for and if it was ever going to be so valuable to us that we would need more than 6 modems.  
MAJ346BWAY
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MAJ346BWAY,
User Rank: Strategist
3/17/2014 | 12:15:34 PM
Re: The 13%
I remember setting up modem pools with a Shiva LANRover on a NetWare 3.11 network back in the day. People used to fight over who had been connected too long! Ah, the memories!

 
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
User Rank: Author
3/12/2014 | 4:22:57 PM
Ouch: 'The browser and Web are moving us in the wrong direction.'
I remember how some people in the computer industry being turned off by the Web browser. It was such a dumb, inadequate user interface. "We're going backwards," they said. The lesson to remember is that the computer industry sometimes moves forward by going backward to an earlier, simpler state and building out again on it. Nothing simple about what goes on in the browser interface today, because it's connected to so many powerful servers on the Internet. Good images, Tom.
rradina
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rradina,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 5:01:36 PM
Re: Ouch: 'The browser and Web are moving us in the wrong direction.'
In comparison to what?  It has always far exceeded a green screen no matter what anyone says or believes.  In the early days it was no match for local app GUIs but the ease of deployment offered by green screen and matched by the browser was a vast improvement over the local apps.  IMO it was almost a tie because local apps were so darn hard to manage.  (Of course Apple has now taught everyone how to do it.)  

A lot has changed since those days.  While it's still not quite as good as a local app GUI, if folks give Google money for browser-based word processing and spread sheet apps, the browser interface is at least pretty darn capable.  (Personally I find Google's apps very limited compared to local Office but ABMers have a different view.)
mak63
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mak63,
User Rank: Ninja
3/12/2014 | 11:56:00 PM
How healthy is the US Web?
It's interested to point out that the US is 4th in the overall Web Index (measure of the Web's growth, utility and impact).

Nevertheless, it's 12th in Universal Access, 10th in Relevant Content. 1st in Impact & Empowerment though, but 27th in Freedom & Openness; which is the sub-index that assesses the extent to which citizens enjoy rights to information, opinion, expression, safety and privacy online.

It's really worth to take a look at the whole Index and play with the sort by to see how other countries rank

Web Index. Image created by Roxana Torre



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