History of the Internet: From Birth to Interconnectivity
As people of the modern age, we definitely take the internet for granted. True, some of us may remember a time when we couldn’t just google an answer. But, for the majority of people in the developed world we could not imagine our day to day lives without the world wide web. In today’s blog, we’ll look at the history of the internet from its humble beginnings to the sprawling empire it is in this century.
On the evening of October 29th 1969, a simple message was transferred from one computer to another more than 350 miles away. Consequently, the receiving computer crashed immediately after. But, it was the start of the history of the internet.
At the time, this new network was called ARPANET. Funded by the military, their goal was to be able to command and control computers remotely in case of a nuclear attack. After all, this was during the cold war and a man-made apocalypse was on the mind of every American. On top of this goal was the computer scientists’ own mission. They wanted to be able to access information on a certain computer from any machine around the world. Hence, the need for electronic messages.
The History of The Internet
From that monumental day, the journey of the internet kept gaining momentum.
- 1972: Ray Tomlinson creates email. Unfortunately, he can’t quite remember what it said.
- 1974: The internet becomes commercialised. As does the name “internet” which is shorthand for internetworking.
- 1983: Website addresses are easier to remember. Before that, websites were identified only by numbers.
- 1989: Commercial dial-up is introduced. Early millennials will remember the frustration that you couldn’t download music and be on the phone at the same time.
- 1990: The world wide web is invented! Therefore, allowing the ability to hyperlink documents on webpages.
- 1991: The first live webcam feed is launched. It watched to see whether or not a university’s coffee pot was empty.
- 1993: We’re able to browse! Thus making the internet more accessible to those unfamiliar with computer programming.
- 1998: Google launches its beta version. Thereby setting up the landscape for the internet we are familiar with today.
- 2004: Web 2.0 comes about. With it, the birth of social media and user-generated websites.
The Internet Today: Social Media
In the history of the internet, we currently stand in the era of social media. A beacon of interconnectivity (for better or for worse), these applications and websites have carved a substantial amount of space for themselves in the internet. However, they do pose questions of privacy and identity. And, raise concerns about what laws will protect individuals as the internet continues to grow and evolve.
The Future of the Internet
In 2010, the first interlink was sent into low earth orbit. Its hope was to reach those in space stations around the earth. However, space enthusiast also dream further. They wish to reach those even outside of our known universe. The future of the internet is one that continues to reach for connection. Its interface might change, and its morals brought into question, but it still relies of the human impulse to feel part of a community.