August 03, 2005

The last laugh

I remember sitting in Dave Bickford's dorm room in Wallace hall and we started giving his roommate J. J. Allaire a hard time because he was studying useful subjects like economy and political science. The year was 1988. He was doing a special project with political science professor Chuck Green about something called hyper text. 'Hyper text markup language,' he explained. It was the funniest thing we had ever heard. Hyper text! It had to be a fad, a conspiracy cooked up by the soft sciences. We knew the real way to put computers to work was by studying things like Fortran 77, or maybe even C. 'Markup'??? That at least sounded like economics. Linking to documents? How could this possibly be related to politics?


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