As a resident of New York I am fascinated by the history of this great city. The can-do attitude and swagger of “Gotham” but also the cultural diversity and complexity. As a technologist I am drawn to the mindboggling effort it takes to run an infrastructure necessary to support 8.4 million residents plus 1.5 million daily commuters who travel each day to the city for work. Urban life has always interested me. The photo above is a New York City street corner taken in 1887 only eleven years after Alexander Bell’s first long distance two-way phone call (between Cambridge and Boston). For the next 15 years both electric and telephonic wires would encase the city in an increasingly unorganized, dense web of entanglement. But progress marches forward. Legislation would be passed, money would be raised and the wires were soon moved underground only to be remembered in these old photographs.