Post-It Note directories

There’s a scene in Halt and Catch Fire S4 where Joe MacMillan is collecting Post-Its of websites. It’s basically a manual index and I found that fascinating. Even in 2023, I love the idea of collecting websites and links and displaying them for all to see.

Of course, what I’m referring to is a Web directory and they’re long out of fashion but the purpose of them has never died - informational retrieval and discoverability. I think a lot of that has been lost in our current stage of Informational Era.

AI has been around in search for way longer than OpenAI et al. It’s all various elements of computer science and machine learning. But this focus on generative AI is a big concern to me because it’s muddying the waters.

I’m not saying we’re going back to directories and pages of links. But generative language models as a substitute for direct and factual information retrieval ain’t the one for me.

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