This is what once made the web great and still, in some small way, continues to make it the place the first drew me to it in the late eighties and nineties — yup, me and the internet go back a ways now: Bob Bemer’s search to discover if he was the first person to introduce curly braces into the standard set of characters available to programmers and programming languages. [Read it.](http://www.bobbemer.com/BRACES.HTM) Before businesses realized that there was gold to be made by seeming to provide content — Chris Locke’s _Clue Train Manifesto_ set them on this course: I blame him for everything — the web was a lot of individuals, programmers and scientists and the occasional scholar just plain having fun sharing information. Sometimes, okay, often, it was anecdotal and provisional, but that is in fact the nature of knowledge, and those early web pages seemed somehow to make it clear what we were up against in attempting to build a vast storehouse of human knowledge that was always changing, sometimes precisely because it had become aware of all the other knowledge out there.
A Brief History of the Curly Braces (as used in computer programming languages)
Published in work