Today we know cable as that essential amenity in our home that keeps us laughing, captivated and informed. It’s the way in which we learn about diverse cultures and people, whether by watching a novela hoping to learn a bit of Spanish, or by watching the Travel Channel to learn about distant lands. But behind the television screen and numerous reality shows that feature the lives of celebrities here in my home state of California exists an industry that stands for so much more than what we see on TV.
Twenty-five years ago, almost to the day, engineers from a small Silicon Valley start-up filed their first patent application. Patent No. 5,088,032, entitled “Method and apparatus for routing communications among computer networks,” was ultimately issued in 1992, and provided foundational capability for the interior gateway routing that enables the Internet as we know it. The company was Cisco, which this month becomes one of only a handful of American companies to be awarded its 10,000th U.S. patent.