Web Dev Beginnings with Mariko Kosaka – HTTP203

Web Dev Beginnings with Mariko Kosaka – HTTP203

JAKE: We’re here with MK. Hit us with some of the things
that are being announced here at I/O today. [MUSIC PLAYING] Who are you and why? MARIKO KOSAKA: Hi. I’m Mariko. JAKE: You’re terrified already. MARIKO KOSAKA: I’m here
because you DMed me that I need to be here. SURMA: That’s actually correct. That’s the first correct answer. JAKE: So how is it you
got started in the web, then, rather than native? MARIKO KOSAKA: I just
kind of figured that out. I grew up in kind of a very
technologically-inclined family. I always had access to a
computer and internet from– I don’t know– grade
4 or 5 or something. It was never like,
oh, this is amazing. I’m going to code assembly
in my Commodore 64. And I’m going to be a
programmer situation. I just hung there around. And one computer that I had
came with a web authoring tool that was made by IBM. It came with the
Windows machine. SURMA: So it wasn’t Dreamweaver? MARIKO KOSAKA: What? SURMA: It wasn’t Dreamweaver? MARIKO KOSAKA: It
wasn’t Dreamweaver. Dreamweaver was college for me. JAKE: What was the IBM one then? MARIKO KOSAKA: This is the one
called IBM Home Page Builder. JAKE: Home Page Builder. Excellent. MARIKO KOSAKA: I believe it
is developed in IBM Japan– maybe Japan local. But that was my
first authoring tool. And it was amazing. It had a GUI, a very simple GUI. Because it was back then
when you were designing pages with flames and tables. Making WYSIWYG was a little– SURMA: I miss frameset. MARIKO KOSAKA: –simpler. Frameset, yeah. Menu on the side. SURMA: Exactly. I could resize it as a user. It was amazing. MARIKO KOSAKA: And then
I think it has a tab to open the HTML code. But back then, it
wasn’t complicated. So as an elementary schooler,
I just kind of figured it out by just playing with
this web authoring tool. And then, somehow, I already
had access to internet. So I must have searched on
the internet or whatever. I do remember I did
not have Google. SURMA: Which search
engine did you use? MARIKO KOSAKA: I did
not use a search engine. It was a directory. JAKE: Oh, yeah, like
a Yahoo directory. MARIKO KOSAKA: Yeah. I was guided to use Yahoo kids. Because I was Yahoo kids. Somehow I found out what
FTP was and signed up for free hosting with the ad
banner that comes with it. Remember the days? JAKE: Yeah. SURMA: Yeah. MARIKO KOSAKA: And
then I uploaded and started making websites. JAKE: I think one of the
things that really brought me to the web is how quickly you
can get something on screen. When I try to do– I was going to say
real programming. Let’s not say real programming. Actually, definitely
it felt to me at the time real
programming versus whatever this new thing was. You felt like
you’re writing loads of code in this other thing. And all you were doing
was outputting some text. Whereas on the web, you’re h-1. Now I’ve got big
text and fonts, red. Now I’ve got red text, marquee. Now we’re talking, right? It’s going everywhere. It was that sort of instant
feeling of progress. SURMA: [INAUDIBLE] MARIKO KOSAKA: Yeah. And back then, Microsoft Word
had amazing HTML rendering engine. SURMA: Well, you say amazing. JAKE: Yeah, let’s– SURMA: I used it a lot. But I also, at some point,
I learned HTML and looked into what Word was generating. MARIKO KOSAKA: Somehow the
magic that tricked me into this was I authored HTML file. Opened it in Microsoft Word
and still acted like website. And you can click on the
links and go to the website. SURMA: That’s true. JAKE: I think it was
a different rendering engine to what Explorer did. It might even have been
different to the one Front Page used. MARIKO KOSAKA: But they
had a support for HTML. SURMA: Yeah. I mean, you could also
write a Word document with your normal buttons. Make it bold, make it a heading,
and then save it as HTML. MARIKO KOSAKA: As a– I don’t know– fourth, sixth
grader with no friends. JAKE: None of us had
friends in school. MARIKO KOSAKA: Coming
home and then just turning on the computer
every day after school. And that box was
my little world. It was amazing. Because my dad was a teacher
at a vocational high school. He was a technology teacher. So I had access to
internet quite early on. So I had an internet friend. And it wasn’t through
a social media thing. It was somehow randomly maybe
from that directory thing. I found this one
person’s website that had the PBS,
the bulletin board. And it turns out it was– we were both girls in
Tokyo in the same grade or whatever and savvy
enough to make web pages. So I would turn on the computer,
do some coding, or drawing, or whatever. But then I go to the PBS,
and then I kind of write a letter, like, today– and we have a very slow– JAKE: Are you still in contact? MARIKO KOSAKA: No. No, I don’t even remember
what that site was. SURMA: I actually had
a person when I was 12. I was a member of a German
Java programming bulletin board kind of thing. MARIKO KOSAKA:
You are so a nerd. SURMA: I’m still in
contact with that person. JAKE: Really? MARIKO KOSAKA: Java programing. JAKE: But you’re not supposed to
meet people from the internet. That’s dangerous. SURMA: What was the
first messenger you used? What’s it like a
Japanese local version? Was it like ICQ or AIM? MARIKO KOSAKA: I
think must be AIM. I wasn’t into those little
chat communication things when I was in Japan. It was always a synchronous,
written in bold, like in a posting to
thread kind of thing, which is kind of how
our chat apps are getting to be now with threads. SURMA: Full circle. JAKE: Back to threading. MARIKO KOSAKA:
Full circle, right? JAKE: So for me, it was
Microsoft Comic Chat. SURMA: What? JAKE: No, this is the thing. I’m assuming that’s
what it’s called. But you went on, and
you picked a room, and you picked a character. And you would type something,
and it would sort of be building this comic book. So your character would
be there saying something. And someone would reply. And their character would
appear as if it was a comic. SURMA: I’ve never
seen or heard of that. JAKE: And people
would start replying, like, you’re being
really annoying. What is all that
garbage text mean? What’s going on? And it took someone
else to figure out it was, oh, they’re using
Microsoft Comic Chat. And they’re like, yes,
what are you using? Well, we are using IRC. This Microsoft Comic Right
was just an IRC client. But it would put
loads of garbage text at the start of
everything it wrote. SURMA: Like 64 encoded images
or something along those lines. JAKE: Just like
the signal to say, here’s the character
I am, and here’s the expression I’m pulling. So that was my way into IRC. And that was my first chat. MARIKO KOSAKA: Now
that you mention it, didn’t we have a widget on
the side of blog or site or something that’s
like mini Twitter? JAKE: I don’t remember this. SURMA: I do. I do. You could have a widget. Basically it said,
check messages. MARIKO KOSAKA: Check
messages– but kind of anonymous-ish maybe. Maybe in the cookie, like,
your user name that you said. It was certainly not like you
create an account or anything. But I would go into certain
websites that I was following and then look at the top page
on the side corner– tiny box. Did somebody posted in there? JAKE: Also, today
is my birthday. MARIKO KOSAKA: Yes,
happy birthday. JAKE: Thank you very much. And you got me a present. MARIKO KOSAKA: Yes. SURMA: Why are you
giving it to her? It’s your present. JAKE: Well, I want to
explain what is this? MARIKO KOSAKA: So you were
explaining maybe two I/Os ago that you got sunburned so hard. JAKE: Yes. And there are videos of that. SURMA: We have it on tape. MARIKO KOSAKA: I don’t know if
I’m supposed to tell you this. But you have to put
makeup on, doing makeup to counterbalance your redness. JAKE: I went onto YouTube, and
I typed in, help, I’m sunburned. What do I do? And there was this tiny
woman who was like, hey, sometimes you get sunburned. And here’s what you do. And I was like, tell me
your secrets, little child. What is it? I’m going to put on
the green makeup. What? The green makeup? What planet are you from? And then I was like,
it’s working kind of. Yeah. And so I went out and
bought some green makeup. YouTube is great for this. MARIKO KOSAKA: While we
were watching the keynote, you were putting
layers of sunscreen and telling me that story. So I bought some
shield from the sun. It’s full face. SURMA: And so I didn’t feel
left out, I got one as well. JAKE: Oh! MARIKO KOSAKA: Yes! JAKE: I feel yours is a
little bit more stylish. I don’t even know how
I’m supposed to wear it. SURMA: That’s up
for debate, I think. JAKE: So this is like
“Handmaid’s Tale” style, right? Is this how I’m
supposed to wear it? Oh, so I’m supposed to go down. SURMA: That’s like
a welding mask. JAKE: Welding mask. It’s definitely something
I’m going to use. I’m a little bit worried. SURMA: It’s going to be
difficult at the airport. JAKE: It protects my face. But there’s these two bits. These are going to fry and kind
of peel off like bad Doritos. SURMA: I think it’s just a look
you should own as, you know. JAKE: Wow, thank you very much. MARIKO KOSAKA: This is
like having team meeting in real life, which
never happens. Because we’re all in
a different office. JAKE: Would you be
more comfortable if we did this via Hangouts? Because I could go over
there and get a laptop. MARIKO KOSAKA: I’ll just
open a laptop, yeah. SURMA: You think the
Wi-Fi will hold up?


  1. LMAO @ "These are going to fry and kinda peel off like bad doritos." Jake have you ever thought of doing stand up?

  2. lets be honest, web programming, mostly thought of as UX/UI, is not real programming. what happens in the backend is the real deal

  3. 🎈Happy Birthday Jake 🎈🎂Good gift, you can use a cardboard under your gift and nobody is going to realize that you are playing on the beach

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