The Executive Computer; A Web of Networks, an Abundance of Services
Bill Clinton and Al Gore made a campaign promise to help build a national data network, hoping it would lead to new digital information services. While waiting to see if the new Administration follows through, businesses can get a taste of the future with the rapidly growing commercial networks of computer services.This is the first mention in the New York Times of the World Wide Web (1993), taken from the 150+ years of NYT archives which, after the discontinuation of the Select subs programme, are mostly available free of charge.
The first networks were on-line services like Prodigy, Compuserve and America Online. Although they provide useful services, these networks are based on minicomputer and mainframe technologies of the 1960's and 1970's, in which thousands of users can connect simultaneously by telephone to a central system that dispenses electronic information. And that technology has drawbacks: the systems can become congested, and for the most part customers have limited options.