Spirit of the Web


Newly revised and updated, this new paperback edition of Spirit of the Web is an absorbing, dramatic, and comprehensive history of the development of communications technologies over the past 150 years.

Spirit of the Web provides a fascinating and insightful perspective on the origins of the digital revolution and the history of the Global Village we now inhabit, from vacuum tubes and telegraphs to BlackBerrys and Google IPOs.


Remarkable renaissance sweep of imagination-- looks deeply into history to find patterns. Spirit of the Web is an engaging hybrid of popular scholarship: part archive, part science textbook, part philosophy, part polemic about the nature of authority and the control of information in all ages.

The Globe and Mail

Spirit of the Web is an excellent examination, not just of the invention of these technologies, but of their economic, social and cultural impact--fascinating‚ --definitive‚--highly recommended.

The Regina Leader Post

Rowland constructs a spirited, stimulating and sophisticated network of stories and accounts of technological inventions and advances, their roots and consequences for humanity, and the personalities that created them.

Winnipeg Free Press

A brilliant book. I couldn't put it down.

Norm Bolen, vice president, programming, History Television

About the Author

Wade Rowland

Posted by Dundurn Guest on December 6, 2014
Wade Rowland photo

Wade Rowland

Wade Rowland is the author of more than a dozen books, including Galileo's Mistake, Spirit of the Web, and Ockham's Razor. He is a former holder of the Maclean Hunter Chair of Ethics in Communications at Ryerson University in Toronto and currently lectures in the social history of communications technologies at Trent University in Peterborough. He lives near Port Hope, Ontario, with his wife, Christine.