Green Veteran of the web

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Green and Grinning After Four Years
by Mike Banks Valentine

Four years of experience in most endeavors doesn't add up to
much authority and wisdom for the vast majority of students.
It usually means a green and grinning graduate in a cap and
gown nervously looking past a dangling tassle to a future of
job interviews and resume polishing career maneuvers.

What it means online is very close to the same thing for
those of us who were early adopters with AOL or Prodigy
internet connections excitedly posting to bulletin boards.
My old 1200 baud modem is now relegated to the garage gathering
dust and mouse droppings, while the cable modem and iMac have
become the latest and best tools in my home office. I'm sure
that those tools will be gathering dust before long when new
innovations make their way into my business life. But even
though I dropped one career to start this new one on the web,
I'm still green and grinning like a new graduate.

The web is evolving so fast that I'm starting to believe I'll
always be green and grinning. Just when I think I have it
all down and mastered, a new development knocks me off of my
overconfident feet and lands me on my bruised behind with more
to learn and more to master as I attempt to wrap up the learning
curve and call myself an "expert". That'll never happen.

I've been writing on small business ecommerce for two years now
and keep looking back to chuckle at what seemed incredible last
month or even last week on the web. What was new is now either
commonplace or useless as internet innovation blows by like a
laughing kid screaming on a roaring jet-ski past a fishing
pier and soaking the elderly net veterans in the wake of the
next innovation.

The most elderly of those net veterans have been working the
web for ten years now so it hardly seems as though there could
be many of them retired from this career as yet. I can't wait
to see how the web is compared to whatever will take it's place
in the not-too-distant future. I recently read a book called
"The Victorian Internet" by Tom Standage, about the dramatic
innovation of the telegraph and how it made the world much
smaller and sped up the pace of life in the 1800's. What will
replace the web and how will long will that take to happen?

I subscribe to a wonderful ezine called "The Rapidly Changing
Face of Computing" put out by Jeffrey R. Harrow of Compaq
Computer Corporation. Each issue is loaded with the latest
developments in technology and is overflowing with enthusiasm
for technological change. Harrow reminds me of an excitable
kid with a new toy who can't wait to run out and show it to
his playmates. He's clearly in a position to be at the bleeding
edge of change and innovation. An enviable position (to me at
least) putting him at the precipice, peering over the ledge
toward the canyon of technological volcanoes erupting down
below. (subscribe or listen at )

I love this stuff and can't get enough of it! As a kid I was
always reading my dad's subscription to "Popular Science" and
"Popular Mechanics" before he got home from his job as a
"programmer/analyst" and took them away from me. It was sort
of inevitable that I'd end up working in technology in some
fashion, even though web content development and web journal-
ism are definitely just peeking in and reporting to the world.

I'm still green and grinning and I hope I always am. This
stuff is just way too much fun!

WebSite101 "Reading List" Weekly Netrepreneur Tip Sheet
Ezine emphasizing small business online
e-tutorial online at:
By week's end you're ready expand your business to the web!

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July 29, 2001