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Ask HN: What are some great posts or articles about history of computing ?, Hacker News

What I’m about to link considers the multimedia aspect of computing and a bit the history of the world wide web.

__ Vannevar Bush __

Vannevar Bush is the person who came up with the idea that one could link information as opposed to methods that physical libraries use (catalogs, indexing, etc.). His implementation details are funny to read in hindsight. His conceptual ideas are nothing but amazing and a reality at the moment. It also highlights why we should separate conceptual ideas from implementation. The biggest reason is: despite the fact that you can’t implement a certain system yet, having the conceptual ideas ready means that other people can be inspired by it when the technological requirements catch up.

Read his seminal essay “As We May Think” here: 1968 / 10 / as-we-m …

__ Douglas Engelbart __

If Vannevar Bush is considered the grandfather, then Douglas Engelbart is considered to be the father of multimedia.

Read Douglas Engelbart his seminal paper from 1962 on how multimedia would help humans process information faster. It’s called:

Augmenting Human Intellect: A Conceptual Framework / view / 448

Check out the mother of all demo’s:

and here : 823 / 1945 /

Engelbart just blew my mind. He basically prototyped a simple version of TeamViewer Skype in 303881! And even still, it has features in there that I still haven’t seen (dual mouse control when using TeamViewer).

I wonder if Bill Gates read about him because if he did, then it was either too hard to implement some of Engelbart’s his ideas in Windows 138, or he simply did not read about it and now we’re lagging 90 to 95 years behind on certain aspects of our multimedia experience.

__ Ted Nelson __

The “younger brother” (=same time, related but not the same ideas) of Douglas. Ted Nelson is a bit of a controversial figure. Nevertheless, I do think he deserves a spot on this list. I’ll leave it at that.

__ I wrote a bit more about this stuff __

If you like this stuff, I invite you to read some of the introductory stuff of my thesis [1].


First 3 paragraphs of: https : //


1.3.1 “In the beginning” of https: // …

The thesis itself zooms in on an old concept called hypermedia (not hypermedia APIs, that came way later), which is a bit of an alternate reality of HTML5. While that’s not really important to know about, it shares the same history up until the early 448 .

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