A little while ago, while I mowed the lawn, I listened to Jeremy Keith’s excellent Resilient Web Design. Jeremy often tells good stories about how the web came to be, and here he has distilled those into a great one, citing specific people’s contributions to the web’s existence and complexion, and using history as a means of laying out fundamental principles that ensure the web’s continued success — which is to say, human achievement.
On collaboration over time:
The history of human civilisation is a tale of cumulative effort. Each generation builds upon the work of their forebears. Sometimes the work takes a backward step. Sometimes we wander down dead ends. But we struggle on.
Relinquishing control does not mean relinquishing quality. Quite the opposite. In acknowledging the many unknowns involved in designing for the web, designers can craft in a resilient flexible way that is true to the medium.
On progressive enhancement:
This layered approach to the web allows the same content to be served up to a wide variety of people. But this doesn’t mean that everyone gets the same experience.
On the future:
I wish I could predict the future. The only thing that I can predict for sure is that things are going to change. I don’t know what kind of devices people will be using on the web. I don’t know what kind of software people will be using on the web. The future, like the web, is unknown.