Thursday, August 22, 2002
Yes, I have been thinking about propellors all day. It keeps me from slowly going insane working in a little box within a big box.... boxes full of people too afraid to step outside (yes, multiple meanings there).
So I spent a fair amount of time today trying to remember what a certain kind of prop was called. One of the first [contestants] in the [human powered submarine contest] used it, a vehicle called "Knuckleball" that was done by a fairly famous marine engineer. This was in the early 1990s, and since the internet became.... internetted... those kinds of pages have disappeared. So my only lead on that was a dry hump. It's sad that once upon a time, the internet was a utopia- everyone was excited because there was a free communication of ideas, people took pride and effort into putting up pages on the web that they cared about, people used IRC, usenet was a hangout and it was worthwhile to break into Princeton's e-quad computer rooms to spend all weekend hacking and playing [bolo].
The turning point was AOL's connection to the "real internet". Previous to that, AOL members could only see AOL, not the internet. Seems like an odd idea now, but for a long time AOL resisted allowing it's members access to the bigger internet- they couldn't hold a member's hand there, and more importantly, it was a loss of control for them, and with that there were less opportunies to make money. Eventually even AOL gave in and suddenly you could see massive wars on usenet over wether to *allow* aol.com addresses to post in newsgroups.
The neighborhood became a lot less friendly, and the property values dropped considerably.
It's a very different internet now. Not only are aol.com addresses common, but since circa 1995 when every other word you read or heard was INTERNET, every business you could possibly imagine has attempted to stake it's claim on the net. Massive commercialization, lawsuits, media exposure, have all taken their toll on the social constructs that once governed behavior on this great big network of brains. We have gone from the mentality and security of a small town environment to that of a bigger than life city. You can find anything on the internet, but these days everything tries to find you.
[ 8/22/2002 12:05:00 AM ] [