Internet pioneer Michael Daniels on how the web became commercialized

In its infancy, the internet was simply a way for government agencies, educators and academic professionals to speak to one another. Today, of course, virtually every business in the world is built on or relies on the internet as a form of commerce.

But what if the internet had never turned to commercialization? What if it had remained just for government and academics?

Get your copy of Michael Daniels’s book

Much of the transformation goes back to the early to mid-1990s when the US government awarded a contract to a small company in Northern Virginia called Network Solutions. They were granted the exclusive right to sell the domain names that we all know so well – .com, .org, .net and so forth.

The chairman of Network Solutions was a guy named Michael Daniels and in 2013 he wrote a book about the early history of the commercialization of the web. His book was called Names, Numbers And Network Solutions. And that’s when I had the chance to talk with him.

So here now from 2013. Michael Daniels.

What I Learned from Martha Stewart About Celebrating Christmas in Style

Photo by Gage Skidmore

Just a few more days until Christmas. But if you haven’t gotten the house ready yet or the dinner planned?

Well, who knows more about planning for a holiday celebration than Martha Stewart.?

Well, all right. Lots of people probably know more but she’s perhaps the most famous entertainment planner.

Perhaps the most fun interview I ever had with her was in the fall of 1993, not long before Christmas that year when we talked about her book Martha Stewart’s Christmas. And we also talked about her business empire. Her TV show had just premiered a few weeks earlier.

So here now, from 1993. Martha Stewart.

Martha Stewart is 82 now. She lives in New York.

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From Pilgrims to Escorts: The Rise and Fall of the Mayflower Madam

As public scandals go, this one might seem pretty benign, by today’s low bar. But in 1984, it was a big story when it was revealed that the authoirities had broken up a high-priced Manhattan escort service that was being run by a woman named Sydney Biddle Barrows.

Now, when a New York Post reporter uncovered the fact that the 32-year-old Barrows is from the Biddle family of Philadelphia, and is a direct descendant of some of the original Mayflower settlers, he dubbed her the “Mayflower Madam” — and the name stuck.

Within two years of her company being put out of business, Barrows wrote a bestselling autobiography, called, of course, “The Mayflower Madam.”

That’s when I first met her.

So here now, from 1986, Mayflower Madam Sydney Biddle Barrows:

Sydney Biddle Barrows is 73 now. She’s a management consultant and writer.

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Suze Orman

We all know about the laws of nature or the laws of physics but are there laws that govern what happens to money?

So here now from 2003. Suze Orman

There most certainly are says longtime personal finance expert Suze Orman, and if you are ignorant of those laws, you are bound to break them and suffer the consequences she says.

I had the chance to interview her several times over period of years as she rose to national prominence, including this conversationa bout her book The Laws of Money, The Lessons of Life.

Suze Orman is now 72 and currently hosts the “Suze Orman Women & Money” podcast.

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Martha Stewart

Photo by Gage Skidmore

Well many of us went to barbecues, reunions, or other big holiday events for the 4th of July.

And if you hosted such an event, you probably realized how much planning and effort goes into it.
Maybe you could have used a little professional advice…

There may literally be no one in America who is better known for her expertise in entertaining than Martha Stewart.

For more than 40 years, Stuart has been dispensing advice on cooking and decorating and entertaining guests. Best-selling books, a magazine, and a television show have helped push her to the forefront.

I’ve interviewed her several times, including this conversation we had in 1994 when she published a book called Martha Stewart’s Menus For Entertaining.

So here now, from 1994, Martha Stewart.

Martha Stewart will be 82 next month . She lives in New York.

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Andrew Grove

Photo by World Economic Forum

It was a young immigrant from Europe who came to the United States nearly 70 years ago who helped create and promote technology that would literally transform the world.

His name was Andrew Grove. A Hungarian by birth, he fled the Hungarian revolution in 1956 to come to the US.

In 1968, he joined the newly formed company called Intel, and eventually became its third CEO. His leadership propelled Intel to the forefront of the fledgling industry.

And in 1997 Andy Grove was Time Magazine’s Man of the Year for his influence in advancing the power and potential of the microchip.

In 2001, Grove wrote his autobiography, a book he called Swimming Across. And that’s when I have the chance to talk with him for a few minutes .

So here now, from 2001, Andy Grove.

Andrew Grove died in 2016 at age 79.

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Lillian Vernon

Today we’d probably call it a “side hustle.”

Photo by Annie Watt

But that term had not yet been invented in 1951, when Lillian Vernon started a small mail order business from her kitchen table.

At that time she sold personalized purses and belts,targeting young women like her with ads in Seventeen magazine.

Born in Germany, she and her family fled to America in 1933, and she became an American citizen a few years later. As a 24-year-old housewife she started her business like so many do today, to bring in a few extra bucks.

And the business began to grow, eventually becoming one of the nations first and foremost direct mail retailers. You’ve probably gotten a Lillian Vernon catalog in the mail at some point over the years.

I met her in 1996 when Vernon wote a book called An Eye for Winners. So here now, from 1996, LillianVernon.

Lillian Vernon died in 2015. She was 88.

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Pete Slosberg

Not many entrepreneurs are able to turn a hobby into a multi-million dollar business, but one who did it was a guy named Pete Slosberg. In 1986 he and a partner set up Pete’s Brewing COmpany, and created a craft beer they called Pete’s Wicked Ale.

It became hugely popular and soon Slosberg was putting his knowledge of rocket science to work brewing the beer.

They also had a mascot for Pete’s wicked ale. And, as you’ll hear in a moment, that mascot eventually touched off a legal battle with Anheuser-Busch.

I met Pete in 1998, when he wrote a book about his entrepreneurial experience. So here now, from 1998, Pete Slosberg.

Pete’s Brewing Company was acquired by The Gambrinus Company, which discontinued the Pete’s Wicked Ale brand in 2011, citing declining sales.

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Ina Garten

Do you ever watch the Food Network? If so, you know who Ina Garten is.

But long before she became the channel’s most popular host, Garten worked in the White House, in the Office of Management and Budget.

That is, until the opportunity to buy a small rspecialty food store in New York’s Hamptons opened up. She kept the store’s name, Barefoot Contessa, and grew it very successfully.

When I met Ina Garten in 1999, she had finally been persuaded to write a cookbook, which turned out to be far, far more popular than even her publisher had hoped.

And three years after the interview you’re about to hear, garden joined the food Network, or her show was a fan favorite for nearly 20 years.

So , from the spring of 1999, Ina Garten.

Ina Garten is 75 now, and yes, still cooking, entertaining, and writing. Cookbooks.

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Jenny Craig

Jenny and Sid Craig

You know the name Jenny Craig. It’s a popular weight loss, weight management and nutrition company with hundreds of locations all over the world.

It’s named, of course, for its founder Jenny Craig. At the age of 51 she and her husband Sid co-founded what is today known as Jenny Craig Inc. They started with locations in Australia, and established a U.S. presence in 1985.

I met Jenny Craig in 1992, when she was promoting one of her books about weight loss and lifestyle management.

So here now, from 1992, Jenny Craig.

Jenny Craig will be 90 in August. Jenny Craig Inc has over 700 worldwide locations.

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