Wednesday, 16 August 2006

Websites that changed the world - great article in the Observer

This gives an overview of the 15 most influential websites since the internet was started.

Here's an brief section from John Naughton's article:

"To get a handle on the scale of what has happened, think back to what the world was like 15 years ago. Amazon was a large river in South America. Ryanair was an Irish airline that flew to places nobody had ever heard of. eBay was a typo. Yahoo was a term from Gulliver's Travels. A googol was a very large number (one followed by a hundred zeroes). Classified ads were densely printed matter in newspapers. 'Encyclopedia' was a synonym for Encyclopedia Britannica. And if you wanted to read what your MP had said in the Commons yesterday you had to queue at the Stationery Office in London to buy Hansard. Oh, and there were quaint little shops in high streets called 'travel agents'.

To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the web we've assembled a list of sites that have become the virtual wallpaper of our lives. What the corresponding list will be like in 15 years' time is anyone's guess. As the man said, if you want to know the future, go buy a crystal ball. In the meantime, read on and wonder."

Fascinating. A must read. I can't help thinking Second Life will be on there soon as well.


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