Posts tagged technology

Louis J. Montulli II, who helped create the early Web browsers Lynx and Netscape, also provided the spark of inspiration behind the <blink> tag. Here's how he remembers it happening:

The danger of joking with humorless people…


Sometime in late summer I took a break with some of the other engineers and went to a local bar on Castro street in Mountain View. The bar was the St. James Infirmary and it had a 30 foot wonder woman statue inside among other interesting things. At some point in the evening I mentioned that it was sad that Lynx was not going to be able to display many of the HTML extensions that we were proposing,  I also pointed out that the only text style that Lynx could exploit given its environment was blinking text. We had a pretty good laugh at the thought of blinking text, and talked about blinking this and that and how absurd the whole thing would be. The evening progressed pretty normally from there, with a fair amount more drinking and me meeting the girl who would later become my first wife.

Saturday morning rolled around and I headed into the office only to find what else but, blinking text. It was on the screen blinking in all its glory, and in the browser. How could this be, you might ask? It turns out that one of the engineers liked my idea so much that he left the bar sometime past midnight, returned to the office and implemented the blink tag overnight. He was still there in the morning and quite proud of it.

Montulli says that he won’t name the engineers that actually implemented his joke idea. But he wants to make one thing clear: “I would like to publicly state that at no time did I actually write code or even seriously advocate for the <blink> tag.”  Poor guy, having to live down a terrible idea his co-workers took seriously. (via Hacker News)


March 10th - On this day in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell makes history by making the first successful call on his invention, the telephone.

On March 10, 1876, three days after his patent was issued, Bell succeeded in getting his telephone to work, using a liquid transmitter similar to Elisha Gray’s design. Vibration of the diaphragm caused a needle to vibrate in the water, varying the electrical resistance in the circuit. When Bell spoke the famous sentence “Mr Watson—Come here—I want to see you” into the liquid transmitter, Watson, listening at the receiving end in an adjoining room, heard the words clearly.

Since it’s invention in early 1876, the creator of the telephone has been questioned as it was first developed by several people, but Alexander Graham Bell was the first to successfully use the device. 

Should musicians be worried about technology taking their jobs, too? Then again, somebody’s got the compose the music, as well as program the robot musicians.