A Brief History of Time

Back in my day...

A Brief History of Time
M19 cluster (Photo credit: NASACC BY-NC-SA 2.0)


Many people like to keep track of beginnings and endings: births, deaths, getting married, staying married, graduating from university, adopting a pet, moving to a new city, starting a new job, retirement.

Similarly, the distance in time between significant events—whether long or short—and the ways in which contemporaneous events influence one another, are often deemed worthy of notice, observation, or celebration.

Some people like to commemorate certain events but not others. For example, I have never been one to celebrate my birthday,* but I can rattle off any number of facts which are ostensibly important in my field, such as that Ethernet was invented in 1973–1974 at (where else) Xerox PARC, or that the first email was sent in 1971.

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