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Friday, May 20, 2011

Naughton's 'A Brief History of the Future' - how did he know?

Just at the dawn of the net neutrality debate, John Naughton's magnificent biography of the Internet as a young man emerged - and I missed it because I was bouncing from Shortmedia to Re:Think! to WorldCom to Barcelona...but its final two chapters bear much re-reading, not least because it predicts both government and corporate assertion of control - with much in common with and acknowledged to Lessig.
If you read those two chapters, then move straight to the opening two chapters of 'Net Neutrality', you get quite a nice synopsis of what happened in the first 12-14 years of the commercial WWW.
I am only encouraged in epilogue to his book by the fact that Web2.0 took off, that Google and Facebook are being sued for hawking our private data, and that only 39% of you use Explorer (and "only" 72% use Windows)! Plus ca change, or 'Apres moi le deluge'?
[My sample is biased because so many of you are French or Norweigan Opera and Safari goers...]

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