The story of my involvement with internet technologies

Prior to the advent of the Internet, my main technology focus was database.  That can be another story, for another time.  I also worked for 5 years building business applications for Tymnet, which was a precursor of the net as we know it today.  

My first involvement was at Pacific Bell, where I became a heavy user of usenet, news groups, etc.  The culture of the phone companies was shaped by the world of UNIX, which they invented, and this led straight into the early forms of the Internet, before browsers started to appear (Mosaic, Netscape) and the World Wide Web was born.  

By the time I joined IBM in 1994, the web was going strong, but I joined a group called the Object Technology Practice.  This was a group of traveling consultants who did client work, usually with SmallTalk, but also C++. The practitioners in this group became very aware of the growth of the web, and also that Java was becoming the standard programming environment for the web.  So, independently they began to self train, and practice with this technology, until there was so much momentum in this direction that the practice was renamed to be the Enterprise Java Services practice.  I maintained a focus on business architecture to support systems development, so while I lived through this move to Java, my actual work did not change much as a result.

I got more deeply involved in the move to serious usage of internet technologies when IBM invented the term "e-business" and world began to beat a path to our door for web-based solutions.  I helped lead an initiative to reskill consultants in what they needed to develop client solutions, including basic Java skills, portal skills, and various application areas.  For our work, we used a web-enabled version of Lotus Notes to create methods and intellectual capital that several thousand practitioners used as their working toolkits.

Later on I served a tour of duty in support of an IBM product area they called "BPM Enabled by SOA".  I worked between project teams and product developers, developing proposals and methods in this zone of technology.  Around that time I also got deeply involved in social networking technologies, starting with and especially virtual world technologies.  But that, too, is another story for another time.