WebTV: The Internet Revolution That Wasn’t

  Back in the mid-1990s, when PCs cost thousands of dollars and required a fair amount of technological savvy to set up and operate, WebTV seemed like the next big thing: an easier, cheaper ($300) way to get online and experience the still-newfangled wonders of the World Wide Web. “After spending a couple of weeks using WebTV,” BusinessWeek technology columnist Stephen H. Wildstrom gushed in 1996, “I think we may now have the product that could turn the World Wide Web …

Should Everyone Be Able to Read This Story?

If you’re reading this, you probably have little reason to think about the one in five Americans who, unlike you, have no easy access to the Internet. An ambitious new initiative, called “Everyone On,” aims to close the “digital divide,” but some experts are already complaining that the nonprofit organization driving the campaign, Connect2Compete, has left older people in its rearview mirror. Nobody would say that young people who can’t afford computers or don’t have tech-savvy parents shouldn’t be given every …