Friday, July 22, 2011

The True Story of the Internet

Although it was a little cheesy at times with the host and use of aggressive music, I did learn a lot from the two videos that I didn't know before. It was also fun watching them talk about some of the start-up companies like Napster that don't really exist anymore, but I remember in my lifetime. I have a cousin that's a freshman in high school who has probably never heard of Napster, of if she has then she's only read about it. I remember all my friends having Napster accounts and I still know every song that was on the first CD I burned on my computer through peer-to-peer file sharing.

The new information I learned that surprised me was the story of Google and the struggles they had to get support for it. The most surprising thing was how Excite had a chance to purchase their search formula for a million dollars and decided to pass. Out of curiosity I looked up if Excite is even still around, and I'm probably equally surprised that their search engine still exists.

I also gained a new perspective on search engines from watching these videos with my 19-year-old younger brother. He told me that he had no idea that Yahoo started off as a search engine. They've become so diversified that he thought they were originally an email client or news service before adding search functions.

The theme that I saw with most of these successful companies was a higher goal not just to make money, but to fundamentally change either how computers are used or how the internet is thought of. They were inventors first before they were businessmen and they saw filling a need in society and affecting how people operate as the paramount step before their financial success.

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