History Of The Internet
The Internet is a vast network of computers
and other mini-networks all linked together so that everyone can find information,
purchase products, or meet new people. It is easily assessable from
home for anyone that has a computer and a modem or at a local library.
It has made a huge impact since its introduction to the public and now
some people cannot see life without it. It is also relatively new
considering it was just about 10 years ago that it was made public and
easily accessible to everyone thorough online services. This paper
will describe the history of the Internet.
The Internet is first conceived in
the early '60s. Under the leadership of the Department of Defense's Advanced
Research Project Agency, it grows from a paper architecture into a small
network (ARPANET) intended to promote the sharing of super-computers amongst
researchers in the United States. Through the next couple years there
were talks of about how this network could come into the cooperate world
and in 1969 researchers at four US campuses create the first hosts of the
ARPANET, connecting Stanford Research Institute, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara,
and the University of Utah. The ARPANET is a success from the very beginning.
Although originally designed to allow scientists to share data and access
remote computers, email quickly becomes the most popular application. The
ARPANET becomes a high-speed digital post office as people use it to collaborate
on research projects and discuss topics of various interests. In 1971 the
ARPANET grows to 23 hosts connecting universities and government research
centers around the country. In 1972 the InterNetworking Working Group becomes
the first of several standards which set entities to govern the growing
network. Vinton Cerf is elected the first chairman of the INWG, and later
becomes known as a "Father of the Internet." The ARPANET goes international
in 1973 with connections to University College in London, England and the
Royal Radar Establishment in Norway.
From 1974 to 1981 the general public starts
to get its first vague hint of how networked computers can be used in daily
life as the commercial version of the ARPANET goes online. The ARPANET
starts to move away from its military and research roots and in 1974 Bolt,
Beranek & Newman opens Telnet, the first commercial version of the
ARPANET. In 1981 ARPANET has 213 hosts and a new host was being added
approximately once every 20 days.
From 1982 to 1987 Bob Kahn and Vint Cerf
are key members of a team which creates TCP/IP, the common language of
all Internet computers. For the first time the it seemed as though the
loose collection of networks which made up the ARPANET is seen as an "internet",
and the Internet as we know it today is born. The mid-80s marks a boom
in the personal computer and super-minicomputer industries. The combination
of inexpensive desktop machines and powerful, network-ready servers allows
many companies to join the Internet for the first time. Corporations
begin to use the Internet to communicate with each other and with their
customers. In 1982 the term "Internet" is used for the first time.
By 1984 the number of Internet hosts exceeds 1,000, by 1987 the number
exceeded 10,000, and by 1990 the number exceeded 300,000.
By 1988 the Internet is an essential
tool for communications, however it also begins to create concerns about
privacy and security in the digital world. New words, such as "hacker,""cracker" and" electronic break-in", are created. These new worries
are dramatically demonstrated on Nov. 1, 1988 when a malicious program
called the "Internet Worm" temporarily disables approximately 6,000 of
the 60,000 Internet hosts. The Computer Emergency Response Team was
formed in 1988 and it was their job to address security concerns raised
by the Worm.
In 1993 corporations wishing to use the
Internet face a serious problem which was commercial network traffic was
banned from the National Science Foundation's NSFNET, the backbone of the
Internet, but in 1991 the NSF lifts the restriction on commercial use,
clearing the way for the age of electronic commerce.
Also in 1991 at the University of Minnesota,
a team led by computer programmer Mark MaCahill releases "gopher," the
first point-and-click way of navigating the files of the Internet.
Originally designed to ease campus communications, gopher is freely distributed
on the Internet. 1991 is also the year in which Tim Berners-Lee,
working at CERN in Switzerland, posts the first computer code of the World
Web in a relatively innocuous newsgroup,
"alt.hypertext." The ability to combine words, pictures, and sounds
on Web pages excites many computer programmers