Underestimating the web… back in 1995
I came across this article by Clifford Stoll from the Newsweek magazine issue dated February 27, 1995. I couldn’t help but laugh at the opening lines of the article:
After two decades online, I’m perplexed. It’s not that I haven’t had a gas of a good time on the Internet. I’ve met great people and even caught a hacker or two. But today, I’m uneasy about this most trendy and oversold community. Visionaries see a future of telecommuting workers, interactive libraries and multimedia classrooms. They speak of electronic town meetings and virtual communities. Commerce and business will shift from offices and malls to networks and modems. And the freedom of digital networks will make government more democratic.
Baloney. Do our computer pundits lack all common sense? The truth in no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works.
Admittedly, he makes some great points later in the article about electronic interaction not completely replacing human interaction, which is true but not as true as it appears he thought. The entire article is worth a reading and can be found by clicking here.