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Oct 2,1996
Tim O'Reilly
Will the Real Internet Please Stand Up


Over the last couple of years, the Internet has taken a detour. Somehow, the web made people think that the Internet was about content-mega web sites, corporate image brochures, catalogs, even zines-instead of about people and communities. One reason for this was the way Netscape on the Windows platform broke the symmetry of the Net. In the old days, it was easy to be both a producer and a consumer of information. Suddenly, there were millions of users who could only consume. Putting the power to produce information back onto every desktop, so that everyone who has a web browser has a web server, returns the net to its roots and to its real strength.

This talk will cover the controversy over Microsoft's attempt to limit the use of the Web (and particularly competing web servers) on Windows NT Workstation. It will also explore ways that a broader view of the kinds of documents that are published in the print world can help us expand our view of what's possible on the web.

The talk will close with some thoughts about the way that the Web heralds the beginning of the "third computer revolution" in which the "infoware industry" will become distinct from the software industry in the same way that software earned its independence from the hardware industry.


Tim O'Reilly is the founder and president of O'Reilly & Associates, Inc., the leading publisher of software and information for the Internet. As one competitor remarked, O'Reilly is perhaps the only company with more than one "hit" in the Internet market. O'Reilly's Internet firsts include:

  • The first major bestselling book about the Internet, Ed Krol's Whole Internet User's Guide and Catalog. O'Reilly continues to publish the world-famous Nutshell Handbooks on UNIX and Internet technologies.

  • The first first commercial web site. GNN, or the Global Network Navigator was created when there were only about 300 web sites, before even Mosaic (let alone Netscape) had become popular. GNN pioneered the concept of the online catalog (since further developed by Yahoo!) and was the first site to contain advertising. It was sold to America Online in 1995 as the first major publishing franchise created on the Internet. The original GNN team went on to found O'Reilly subsidiary Songline Studios, publisher of MovieCritic site.
  • The first web server for the Windows NT and Windows 95 platforms. O'Reilly's Tim is also a board member of the Internet Society and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.


    Tim O'Reilly
    O'Relly & Associates, Inc.
    103 Morris Street
    Sebastopol, CA 95472
    707-829-0515 ext 266, Fax 707-829-0104,
    Check out,,

    [submit summary] Submit a summary of this lecture to the EE380 mailbot.

    Dennis Allison
    Fri Dec 6 18:10:05 PST 1996