Interesting notes re the World Wide Web (longish)

Subject: Interesting notes re the World Wide Web (longish)
From: "Matthew B. Hicks" <matt -at- UNIDATA -dot- UCAR -dot- EDU>
Date: Mon, 8 May 1995 10:13:46 -0600

Hi all:

Just received this message from my boss. It contains some interesting
information, thoughts, and trivia regarding the WWW and the future of online
publications. If you think your company should have a Web site, but are
having trouble convincing management that it's worthwhile, there may be
something here you can use. If nothing else, I think there is food for
thought and discussion here. As noted, the speaker was Marc Andreesen, the
lead developer on the Mosaic team and cofounder of Netscape Communications
and likely to become a Very Rich Man(tm).

Matt Hicks, Tech. Writer, Unidata * I may not agree with what you
Boulder, CO, (303)497-8676, ******* say, but I'll defend to the
matt -at- unidata -dot- ucar -dot- edu ************* death my right to mock you.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 5 May 1995 16:18:27 -0700
From: William P. Barr <wbarr -at- leland -dot- stanford -dot- edu>
To: html-authors-guild -at- list -dot- Stanford -dot- EDU
Subject: Marc Andreessen Lecture

This afternoon, Marc Andreessen, inventor of Mosaic and now co-founder of
Netscape, gave a lecture to a grad class at Stanford. Attending the lecture
was a literal who's who of human-computer interface design.

What follows is an embellished version of my shorthand scrawl:

- Netscape estimates 6 million people use their browser; no market percentage
was claimed

- According to protocol analysis, the majority of IP packets being sent over
the internet contain http, having surpassed email a few weeks ago
- the majority of users access the internet via the web

- Lots of old metaphors are now being used to display information, those
metaphors will break down very soon (malls, newsstands, etc.)

- Major Netscape customers are looking to the internet for salvation because
they really don't know what or where their businesses are, anymore
- communications and telcos
- publishing
- financial
- computer/software
- Global Fortune 2000 companies

- Providers like Compuserve, AOL, Prodigy, etc. are in big trouble if they
don't adopt an infrastructure that uses the internet model
- currently, their backbones can't handle the increased level of traffic

- Some of Netscape's first large customers were Penthouse, Playboy and Hustler

- Proxy servers are a key software technology
- without them, large companies won't hook up
- security
- content control
- traffic control

- Actual internet/web business application software is the growth market, not
just browsers

- A change of the page metaphor is imminent
- HTML 3 will be the launchpad
- interactivity will be responsible for new metaphors
- interactivity will be the ultimate user control for page layout
- interactive browsers will let users redefine the layout of a
site on the fly, at will
- indexing, navigational aides and content organization will quickly
supercede current layout and design issues

- VRML and Hot Java will support this change
- "Doom!" like interfaces will be the next model for browsers
- current VRML does not support views of other people using browsers
on the same page, Java will change that
- 3D scenes will be "commonplace" by the end of the year
- Hot Java is actually about 6 years old
- ultimately, user will have complete control over how content is

- Have computers become "geek-free" or have we all become geeks?
- he suspects the latter, especially in light of the average user
trying to network Windows 3.1

- Privacy is still an issue, though not as big as before
- current, publicly available encryption technology will require
about 64 mips years of CPU time to crack a message

- Netscape is now accepting advertising on it's site, but is not leasing space
on its server farm for other external content

- He forsees custom protocols being developed for interactive sessions
- user connects to site, browser downloads protocol for interactive
session, after session is complete, browser forgets protocol

- HTML and PDF are complimentary technologies
- soon there will be more browser improvements that will have little
to do with HTML or page manipulation, but will facilitate data

- Emphasized use of push-pull facilities as the basis for crude interactivity
and background "multimedia" experience

- Lost in hyperspace is still a big problem and lots more research needs to be
done to solve this issue

William Barr, Stanford Computer Forum phone: 415-723-6632
ERL 448/450, Stanford, CA 94305-4055 fax: 415-725-7398
wbarr -at- leland -dot- stanford -dot- edu finger wbarr -at- cs -dot- stanford -dot- edu for PGP
listowner: html-authors-guild -at- list -dot- stanford -dot- edu
"My opinions are mine and only mine."

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