Jake makes a few decent points about the web of trust. I didn't grant him master status on an unfounded, light-hearted whim regardless of his rampant modesty, although I must admit Jake may currently qualify as a 'lapsed-master'. He got in there and did stuff. He was his own Jake. He was creative with the knowledge he possessed. Who among the early Web snobs could forget 'Matthew and Jake's Adventures'. It was one of the first web pages I saw that had *pictures*.
So Jake, Isn't it weird that I'm talking about you as if you aren't reading this? ;-)
Anyway, Since Jake insists, I'm downgrading him to 'dimwit'. Oops, wait... where did that one go? Sigh, you seal yourself in a cave for six months and the whole world changes :-)
I see the 'old boys network' article... I'm afraid to read it becuase I knwo I'll spend the whole night responding. Of *course* anything of note is run by an 'old boys network'. Every human endeavor of more than one person is a social affair involving social webs, and those that arrive first tend to be at the core of that web. Is that *really* a surprise to anyone? The only time that's destructive is when those at the core are primarily concerned with staying at the core or abusing the position.