The very early days were awesome. I remember when I first scrapped AOL and Apple's eWorld. I mean.. I already got most of what I needed from IRC, Gopher, and a few other protocols. But Berners-Lee just changed everything. Suddenly, everybody had a voice. It was awesome. It was chochtky and that is what I loved about it. There were these two chicks who were roommates in in California, for example. They liked to pose nude and put the pictures on their website. Now.. don't color that piece of information with what is out there now. There were not hardly anybody there. They ended up knowing most of the people who regularly viewed their work. Wonderful girls.
Then you had the very beginnings of clan wars. With games like Warcraft and Warcraft II it came on strong. Back then, before the Battle .Net atrocity, you could connect to whomever you wanted. Blizzard really began to clamp down hard on freedom, so many of us jumped ship for Microsoft studios and the Age of Civilization series. I used to kick all holy hell in those games. Age of Empires: Age of Kings was my pinnacle much later on, playing the English. I really loved the Age of Myth, though everybody else hated it. Oh well.
But that is how the clans and cliques began. We also began hacking very early. We all got the schematics for brown boxes, blue boxes, beige boxes, etc. But the phone system was upgrading faster than we could build them. Bastards. We were literally like two seconds late to taking advantage of the old purely audible phone network. I didn't get too much into it, but I have always been fascinated by the Capt Crunch legends, and the legions of blind kids who could command telephone networks with nothing but their whistles.
I had fully planned to separate when my enlistment was up and continue down aerospace engineering with a secondary bachelors or (at worst) minors in computer science. But the explosion of the web and all the things I found I could do there is what led me to computer science. The Web is this GIANT complex corpus of texts, images, media, networks, and all kinds of structural information. I can sit in my home and write code which can make sense of these things, find patterns, and if I want, make money from those patterns in some cases.
But now think I will settle by going back to my roots. I plan to build a flying machine. A little UAV airship, controlled remotely across 3G using an Android tablet connecting to the servos and control surfaces. What I really want is for the second tablet to display the GIS map on the screen, with the airship icon overlay at it's position. Then shift to the camera mode and see what the vehicle is transmitting. Control it remotely through the data channel.
What makes me more interesting in this before are the OWS protests. Such a device can transmit live video feed directly to server farms and protected from any state government's attempt to control it. It's also perfectly legal in a narrowly defined use of it. IF they destroy it, I need only purchase another second hand tablet, blimp, and control surfaces.
Sorry for the huge tangent, but I have a lot on my mind lately. Wondering if anybody else has been wrestling similar thoughts of sedition and awesomeness.
With great power comes great risk of getting yourself killed.