MIT just cracked open an historic time capsule–here’s what was insideHistorians in the News
In 1999–which may as well be 5,000 BC in internet years–the Laboratory for Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology buried a time capsule.
The package, which was designed by architect Frank Gehry, contained internet history. Its contents were protected by a cryptography puzzle designed by MIT professor Ron Rivest, meant to keep it safe for decades. However, on May 16, the self-taught Belgian programmer Bernard Fabrot solved the complex calculation, which required 80 trillion successive squarings of a number. So two decades after the time capsule was buried, it’s been unearthed, thanks to the unpredictably fast advance of technology.
Daniela Rus, the current director of MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and former lab directors Anant Agarwal and Ed Fredkin rediscovered the contents last week. According to MIT’s Adam Conner-Simons, the scene was something akin to “a group of giddy schoolchildren opening Christmas presents.”
comments powered by Disqus
- New Documents Illuminate The University of Texas’s Secret Strategy to Keep Out Black Students
- Citizenship Day Used to Be Called 'I Am an American Day.' Here's How It Came to Be—and Why It Changed
- The 1936 Strike That Brought America’s Most Powerful Automaker to its Knees
- The Ethnic Studies Movement Is Making Big Inroads in America's High Schools
- Samuel Chase: The one Supreme Court justice who has ever been impeached
- Allen C. Guelzo Reviews Sidney Blumenthal's Latest Installment of His Biography of Lincoln
- What Reconstruction-Era Laws Can Teach Our Democracy: The NY Times Reviews Eric Foner's Latest Book
- Should historians read their own book?
- Cokie Roberts, Pioneering Journalist Who Helped Shape NPR, Dies At 75
- Russ & Daughters History Goes on Display in New York