I was surprised when the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics in London honored two of my favorite institutions: the National Health Service and the World Wide Web. I was not surprised when LA Times sports writer Diane Pucin posted the following tweet: “For the life of me, though, am still baffled by NHS tribute at opening ceremonies. Like a tribute to United Health Care or something in US.” @swaldman responded to the sports writer with “Well, maybe, if United Health Care were government-run and a source of national pride.”
I was not surprised when Meredith Vieira and Matt Lauer of NBC admitted they had no idea why Tim Berners-Lee was being honored by sending out a tweet. Ever since I read his book Weaving the Web: The Original Design and Ultimate Destiny of the World Wide Web by Its Inventor (HarperSanFrancisco, 1999), Berners-Lee has been one of my heroes. Finally locating my hard copy of the book in the guest bedroom where my son Colin used to sleep, I quickly located the marked passage I was looking for:
“People have sometimes asked me whether I am upset that I have not made a lot of money from the Web. In fact, I made some quite conscious decisions about which way to take my life. These I would not change…. What does distress me, though, is how important a question it seems to be to some.