Book - The Victorian Internet

The Victorian Internet cover

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The Victorian Internet

by Tom Standage

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Synopsis: Beginning with the Abbe Nollet’s famous experiment of 1746, when he successfully demonstrated that electricity could pass from one end to the other of a chain of two hundred monks, Tom Standage tells the story of the spread of the telegraph and its transformation of the Victorian world. The telegraph was greeted by all the same concerns, hype, social panic and excitement that now surround the Internet, and Standage provides both a fascinating insight into the past and a context in which to think rather differently of today’s concerns.

Very interesting and the parallels to our modern day internet are astounding. I felt that Standage didn’t need to point out so many of these similarities as they will not date well; however, you can clearly see how the telegraph changed the world and how the internet is doing the same. At the same time, you see how people are people — scheming, loving, misunderstanding, etc…