Most people have already forgotten how dark and unsignposted the Internet once was. A user in 1996, when the Web comprised hundreds of thousands of “sites” with millions of “pages,” did not expect to be able to search for “Olympics” and automatically find the official site of the Atlanta games. That was too hard a problem. And what was a search supposed to produce for a word like “university”? AltaVista, then the leading search engine, offered up a seemingly unordered list of academic institutions, topped by the Oregon Center for Optics.
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