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Re: NSF and the Birth of the Internet
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Tue, 19 Aug 2008 18:19:30 -0400



Begin forwarded message:

From: Randall Webmail <rvh40 () insightbb com>
Date: August 19, 2008 5:27:27 PM EDT
To: dave () farber net
Cc: mo () ccr org
Subject: Re: [IP] Re:     NSF and the Birth of the Internet

From: "Michael O'Dell" <mo () ccr org>
Date: August 19, 2008 1:27:36 PM EDT
To: dave () farber net
Subject: Re: [IP] Re:      NSF and the
Birth of the Internet

crucial to the explosion of the Web was the
revolution in PC graphics cards.

when Gopher first hit, I thought it was gonna be the
Internet's answer to MINITEL and be explosively successful.
I could play with HTTP but only because I had a Sun workstation
on my desk and some expensive color displays in the terminal
room at Bellcore.  The only thing that worked over dialup
modems on my Toshiba T1200 was Gopher because all it needed
was an ascii terminal emulator running on a Black&White
character-based display.

that was the technology which was already pervasive out there -
the installed base - and that was in the best position to
exploit
Gopher.

However, not long after that, this VGA graphics thing appeared
and while for the first year buying one caused serious pain,
they started dropping in price, the VESA bus slot appeared on
cheap motherboards, and the world changed, or it was about to.

First off - thank you, Dave, for bringing this bit of net.history out where Brewster's Archive can save it for posterity. Secondly, I speak not as one of those who "made it happen" but as one who was watching it all go down, and I'm writing to you, Michael, to mention the "JPEG Wars" that broke out on the Usenet alt.binaries.feelthy-peectures groups.

People with high-end (at the time expensive) video cards posted pr0n using JPEGs, which took FOREVER to render on older cards.

Ah, memories ...





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