Archive for History

Was the Web Invented 123 Years Ago? Evidence Surfaces ;-)

Some of my favorite runs with the Winchester Highlanders were through the spacious and gorgeous Middlesex Fell Reservation - directly adjacent to Winchester, MA, USA. One sunny and cool Saturday, we took a slightly different route and came across the mysterious structure below (map).  Looks like an old pump house. Or … is that just a cover?

Pump house on the shores of Spot Pond, Middlesex Fells Reservation, north of Boston

Pump House or Home of the Web?

Check out the inscription (photo below) above the massive doors:  “WWW 1890″. Could it be that this is where the World Wide Web was invented? And could the Web have been invented nearly 100 years before history records that Sir Tim Berners-Lee is believed to have conceived of the world’s most important communications medium?

Inscription above door of pump house reads " WWW 1890"

Inscription reads, “WWW 1890″ .. and also “Big Russ”

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Some Old Running Race Data

Three old photos of Steve Bratt running - 1980 to 1983

1980 – 1983

The Web captures so little of people’s personal histories, pre-Web.  I had a few minutes of time today, and for some reason, dug out old running training logs, and put some of the data on this site.  If interested, have a look at this new page with a summary of race performances by era (high school to the present).  I included some scans of old training logs and race results from the early 1980s.  Ahhh .. those were the days!

Year Up: Preparing Urban, Young Adults to Get Down to Business

Following my talk on life and the Web

The Year Up program’s “About” page says that they aim to, “… close the opportunity divide by providing urban young adults with the skills, experience, and support that will empower them to reach their potential through professional careers and higher education.”  After meeting a number of students and staff at their Boston campus last Friday …  I’m sold. Here’s the short story …

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Bill Brace (1926 – 2012): 3 Ways He Changed My Life

Before the start of 1984 AGU run over the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco: Bill Brace, Howard Pratt, Steve Bratt, ???, Art Montana, Tim Grove, Brian Evans, ???, Dave Olgaard, Brian Bonner, ???

Yesterday, I and a couple hundred relatives and friends attended a memorial service in Concord, Massachusetts for Bill Brace.   It was a wonderful celebration of a life lived to its fullest: world-renowned geoscientist, runner, rower, adventurer, naturalist, wood craftsman, husband, father, grandfather, friend and human being.  Only a small percentage of who he was and what he did could be captured in the obituaries in the MIT press and Boston Globe .. but please do have a read.  It was great to see many old friends yesterday, and to swap Bill stories.

What I want to remember here is how Bill played a major role in 3 things that changed my life:  choosing MIT for grad school, meeting my wife, and finding my first job (hint: the photo here has something to do with the latter).  Read on … it’s kind of a funny set of stories …

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