There’s a lot of really good technical information out there on the ‘Net, if you know where to look. One excellent place to start digging is Alcatel-Lucent’s archive of the Bell Systems Technical Journals. The journals, which documented the work done at Bell Labs from 1922 to 1983, contain a gold mine of technical information, including quite a few historic, world-changing papers. Here’s a description, taken directly from the first (July 1922) issue.
Claude Shannon’s paper A Mathematical Theory of Communication is there — the paper that basically kick-started the whole field of information theory. A paper by Bardeen and Brattain on transistor physics is available, letting us hear about the discovery of the transistor directly from two of its inventors.
There’s even a paper from 1979 discussing how a new “cellular” phone system could work! What won’t they think of next?