It may be sentimentality, but I really miss the old days of the internet.
I remember using it for the first time in a public library on a 56k modem, on a PC that you had to book in advance.
There was an excitement about it, it was new and unexplored.
Bandwidth was such an issue, online video was practically non-existent, while images loading in via progressive scans, initially as low-resolution images that gradually became clear over several seconds.
Social media did not exist.
Search engines had no ads.
There were no pop-ups for accepting cookies or signing up to newsletters.
Instead, we had personal home pages with page counters, blink tags, and scrolling marquees, and web rings...
E-commerce did not exist, I can clearly remember when people we paranoid about sharing their credit card details online with anyone for fear of being ripped off.
They had to be educated to "look out for the lock" for SSL-enabled websites before sharing their credit card details.
To think there is a whole generation of Zoomers who never experienced the naive joy and freedom of Web 1.0.
Do we need a Neo Web 1.0, a return to the old?
There was an attempt to do something similar a few years, back, when Geocities relaunched as Neocities: "Neocities is a social network of 685,600 web sites that are bringing back the lost individual creativity of the web." - https://neocities.org/
I love projects like Neocities, and launched Greppr for similar reasons.
As a technologist, I will never advocate for a return to the past, but in the shift to the commercial platform dominated internet we have today, we have really lost that free spirit of discovery and hacker ethos.
An internet of builders and hackers is far more interesting that an internet of consumers.
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