Posts tagged Web

Hypertext Wants To Be Free

From an article a couple weeks back, on anniversaries and Resurrected Landmarks, by Eric Meyer. Boldface mine.

It was just last week, at the end of April, that CERN announced the rebirth of The Very First URL, in all its responsive and completely presentable glory. If you hit the root level of the server, you get some wonderful information about the Web’s infancy and the extraordinary thing CERN did in releasing it, unencumbered by patent or licensing restrictions, into the world, twenty years ago.

That’s not at all minor point. I don’t believe it overstates the case to say that if CERN hadn’t made the web free and open to all, it wouldn’t have taken over the net. Like previous attempts at hypertext and similar information systems, it would have languished in a niche and eventually withered away. There were other things that had to happen for the web to really take off, but none of them would have mattered without this one simple, foundational decision.

I would go even further and argue that this act infused the web, defining the culture that was built on top of it. Because the medium was free and open, as was often the case in academic and hacker circles before it, the aesthetic of sharing freely became central to the web community. The dynamic of using ideas and resources freely shared by others, and then freely sharing your own resources and ideas in return, was strongly encouraged by the open nature of the web. It was an implicit encouragement, but no less strong for that. As always, the environment shapes those who live within it. . . .

–Eric Meyer, Resurrected Landmarks
meyerweb.com (May 8, 2013)

It’s worth noting that as hypertext technologies go, the web stack (HTTP, HTML 1) wasn’t the most sophisticated implementation; in many ways it still isn’t. But it was operational, and available, and learnable, and it was free and open. And that has made all the difference between science-fiction dreams and a fundamental, transformational shift within world culture, society and learning.

In other news, thanks to Eric for reminding me to wish a very happy belated 10th anniversary to CSS Zen Garden.

Monday Lazy Linking

Friday Lazy Linking

    <ul>
<li><p><a href="http://libertarian-labyrinth.blogspot.com/2010/05/dedicated-to-mutualists-of-world.html">Dedicated to &quot;the mutualists of the world&quot; Shawn P. Wilbur, <cite>Out of the Libertarian Labyrinth</cite> (2010-05-17)</a>. <q>Charles T. Sprading's 1930 Mutual Service and Cooperation is available for download from Google Books.</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Wednesday 2010-05-26.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://reason.com/archives/2010/05/19/watch-out-facebook">Watch Out, Facebook. <cite>Jesse Walker: Reason Magazine articles and blog posts.</cite> (2010-05-26)</a>. "The business press may be filled with rhetoric about 'participatory media' and 'user-generated content,' but the country's most prominent Web 2.0 company treats its participants like a bunch of CompuServe subscribers circa 1994. ..." <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Wednesday 2010-05-26.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://sheldonfreeassociation.blogspot.com/2010/05/oh-no.html">Oh No! Sheldon Richman, <cite>Free Association</cite> (2010-05-23)</a>. <q>Conservatives won't want to hear it, but the libertarian alternative to antidiscrimination laws is: COMMUNITY ORGANIZING!Atom</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Wednesday 2010-05-26.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://sheldonfreeassociation.blogspot.com/2010/05/welfare-state.html">The Welfare State. Sheldon Richman, <cite>Free Association</cite> (2010-05-23)</a>. <q>Despite what you may read at other libertarian sites, the welfare state is not the result of efforts by lazy poor people to enslave and live off the productive classes. Rather, it is the result of efforts by the political-social-corporate elite to subordinate and control the poor for a variety...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Wednesday 2010-05-26.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://darianworden.com/blog/2010/05/free-george-donnelly-handbill/">Free George Donnelly Handbill. DarianW, <cite>DarianWorden.com</cite> (2010-05-24)</a>. <q>Thanks to ALLy James Tuttle for creating a solid handout in support of George Donnelly. Download the .pdf at LibertyActivism.info.</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Wednesday 2010-05-26.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://eyeofthestorm.blogs.com/eye_of_the_storm/2010/05/heres-a-sortof-interesting-piece-of-politicalcultural-commentary-by-mark-lilla-he-frames-the-whole-thing-in-terms-of-radica.html">here&#39;s a sortof interesting piece of political/cultural. Captain Capitulation, <cite>eye of the storm</cite> (2010-05-13)</a>. <q>here&#39;s a sortof interesting piece of political/cultural commentary by mark lilla. he frames the whole thing in terms of &quot;radical individualism&quot;=&quot;the libertarian mob,&quot; as against...well, what? obviously the basic contrast of individualism is to collectivism, but it&#39;s hard to sit there and squarely endorse that term: there are too many...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Thursday 2010-05-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://catandgirl.com/?p=2473">Arrivals Lounge. Dorothy, <cite>Cat and Girl</cite> (2010-05-27)</a>.  <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Thursday 2010-05-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://cherylcline.wordpress.com/2010/05/27/gimme-your-best-just-world-play/">Gimme Your Best Just-World Play. cherylcline, <cite>der Blaustrumpf</cite> (2010-05-27)</a>. <q>Come on.  I need it after reading this: Jiang Chun Geng is one of 15 elderly Chinese men and women whom Zhu is treating in his simple village clinic for what locals label “rotten leg disease.” A definitive diagnosis is no longer possible so many decades after the initial exposure...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Thursday 2010-05-27.)</em></p></li>

The history of the blink tag

    <p><a href="http://www.montulli.org/theoriginofthe%3Cblink%3Etag">theoriginofthe&lt;blink&gt;tag (www) <cite>www.montulli.org</cite> (2010-05-11)</a>.</p><p>A brief history of the most hated tag in the history of the Web. </p>