Tips 43

 

One day in the early 1960s, Bob Taylor, head of a newly-formed scientific research arm of the U.S. Defense department, wondered why he had to have three different terminals to talk to the computers at three different universities. In time, this led to a crude network of four computers (one had been added) sharing a common network "language." ARPANet, as it was later called, grew into the Internet. About 30 years later, Katie Hafner and Matthew Lyon were invited by some of the Internet's founders to write a book about it. They proceeded to interview all the participants and to gather and read every important paper that had contributed to the Internet's development. The story they discovered was one of people asking some simple questions, having some occasionally brilliant ideas, and working out details one at a time, often in a team-like fashion. Hafner and Lyon's account shows how a wonderful structure can develop one idea at a time, leading to other, successive steps that collectively change history. For anyone who works daily with Internet technology, this book offers revelations on about every page.