we’ve moved on

Back in 1997 or 8…we had an internet to build. I had come to silicon valley in 1995 and one of the biggest thrills of my life was to see the Netscape N in real life outside their headquarters. it was as if the people who made things ┬áhad come off the tops of the faraway planet where the superheroes live. I realized that human beings worked hard and made this stuff.

THe internet was a magical castle that everyone was working on, and making up exactly the way we all wanted.

We hoped that it would take off. We all said it *had* to take off.

We were so excited when URLs appeared on billboards. This was the era of geocities and flashing color hightlights. the “under construction” icon was seen almost everywhere.

I had a half of an idea to start a business of my own. Four of us were going to offer to make websites for small businesses. It failed. for numerous reasons, but i did make a lot of cold calls askign small businesses what they might pay for such a service.

It grew. THe internet got as big as we thought it would, and maybe even better.

When I drive on the 10 free way to West LA there is graffitti on one of the overpasses.

It’s been there for more than a year. It’s a URL. a Uniform Resource Locator as a spray-painted bit of tag under an overpass.

I can hardly credit it.

 

what will our documentary be like?

I was watching a documentary about Carole King and James Taylor. The Troubadour and folk music came into it. THe voice over said that after the craziness of the 60s people were ready to calm down.

And I thought about the 60s, because i grew up in the after eddies of it. And I remember the 70s. I was born in them, but the people I grew up around were still living the 70s.

In the 1960s they were so proud of what they had done. They say they stopped a war, and ran a bad president out of the white house.

I didn’t follow that part of the 60s. I followed the part where the landed on the moon. I got together with my friends and worked on technology. Me and my freinds–my computer freinds, email friends–we worked and made the internet. The dot coms exploded and then imploded. But what we built went on, and it’s still changing the world.

We didn’t stop a war. But maybe we are a little tired after the nineties…I wonder what music was supposed to pick us up?

I feel like I built something.

I think the 60s activists feel like they built something too. Or maybe they feel like they stopped something from being built.

What’s our legacy? What’s our anthology?