Computers provided a positive space in a negative field: they showed us we could start again, against ‘selfhood’, against ‘society’, building something less flawed and less corrupt in these fresh pastures of code. One day we knew they would change the world, and they did. The old guard would come with its name-calling and its media, its embedded sense of ‘national interests’ and patriotism, its accusations of betrayal, but we always knew the world was more modern than they realised. Cairo was waiting. Tunisia was waiting. We were all waiting for the day when our technology would allow an increasing universality of freedom. In the future, power would not come from the barrel of a gun but from communications, and people would know themselves not by the imprimatur of a small and powerful coterie, but by the way they could disappear into a social network with huge political potential.