Thursday, 28 July 2016
Today is the 10,000th day of the Web. Put another way the Web is 27 years and about 4 months old.
On day 1,208 the dial-up melody rang in our ears and, since then, in the ears of anyone who watches a movie from that era where emails are involved.
However all this is fairly academic for most of us because the use of emails didn't really become relatively commonplace until the mid 1990s. Hotmail, for example, started in 1996/7.
I wonder when the WWW is viewed 100 or 1000 years from now how significant it will be regarded.
When I was very young my maternal grandparents lived in a large house where the main power was gas and the heating was largely coal. The wireless (the name in those days for a radio) was powered by an accumulator. The accumulator (a type of electrical battery which can be charged and discharged and recharged many times) would be collected by a local company and recharged every couple of weeks. They had a vacuum cleaner which was huge and not particularly portable and was powered by a person who pumped a handle rather like this one only significantly larger. It was a two-person operation.
I often talked with my grandmother in later years (bearing in mind that she died 45 years ago at the age of 93) of the huge changes that had taken place in her lifetime.
In year 1887 when my grandmother was born the first British motor car was just about appearing. In 1971 the motor car with all its technology as we know it today was not even a dream. When she died the personal computer wasn't known never mind the World Wide Web. She did live to see the first moon landing (in 1969). Ironically the computer in the Apollo had a miniscule amount of the computing power of the simplest of mobile phones today.
The changes that have appeared in my lifetime sometimes blow my mind. I wonder if the changes that my son and subsequent generations will see will be as huge. Of course I will never know.