How many people know the story of the internet?
The internet first developed alongside the idea and development of electronic computers during the 1950s. These began with terminals hosted in the same building, and each computer was manually connected to the terminal. These were originally called local area networks or LANs for short. However, these had clear limits as the computers could only connect with other computers in the building. This system would definitely not work for the computer’s we are used to today.
After the creation of LANs, product developers wanted to create even better internet that would go much further than just one building. Thus, they created Wide Area Networks (WANs) that can spread data and information across much greater distances. This creation required the combined efforts of several scientists and computer programmers across the country and world.
By this point, it was the 1960s and 1970s, and only large scientific organizations, like the National Science Foundation had access and funding for the large supercomputers that could run on WANs. However, in the early 1980s they began funding the Computer Science Network that worked to make the internet much more accessible to the masses.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s the commercial use of the internet really took off. This was because the computers were smaller, and the internet was much faster and worked over greater distances than ever before.
But, at this time the internet was a really disorganized place. So, various scientists went about trying to organize it. First, Tim Berners-Lee created the first web browser called the WorldWideWeb that allowed people to easily access the internet. But then there were no search engines, like Google, to help find information. The only way to gather information from the internet was to know the exact web address. This clearly was not ideal. Thus, even more people worked on creating the organizational systems of the internet we are used to today, including Google, Yahoo, Bing, and several other precursors no longer in use.
Today the internet has become a part of our daily lives. We use it to search information, pay bills, look up our school grades, and connect with people all over the world. Its influence is widespread. Thus, we must be thankful for the creators and inventors who helped develop this wonderful technology that is so essential for life today.