Dialog was pretty futuristic. In the 1970s and '80s it was the closest thing to an electronic library there was, containing the world's scientific, scholarly, and journalistic texts. The only problem was its price, $1 per minute. You could spend a lot of money looking things up. At those prices only serious questions were asked. There was no fooling around, no making frivolous queries--like looking up your name. Waste was discouraged. Since searching was sold as a scarcity, there was little way to master the medium, or to create anything novel.