The Internet is a common site in homes and businesses around the world, it allows people to stay in almost constant contact with the people they love or the people that they work with. But what many people often overlook, is how the Internet came into being in the first place, and why it was created, because at the moment, many people have taken it for granted. So if you want to find out the how, the where and the why of Internet history, here is a very brief introduction to the history of the Internet so far.
What many people don’t realise is that the internet has actually been around in theory since the 1950s and the 1960s, when computers were being developed. The internet began with the creation of point to point communication, or a connection between two points, or in this case two mainframe computers or terminals. As this communication developed, over the 50s, 60s and 70s, the advent of so-called packed switched networks, a digital networking communications method that groups together all transmitted data into blocks, or packets, then led to packet switched networks such as APRANET, which in turn led to the development of protocols for Internetworking, which is when multiple and separate networks were joined together into a network of networks.
In 1982, the Internet Protocol Suite or TCP/IP was established, and the idea of a world-wide network of fully interconnected TCP/IP networks were introduced, and these networks were named the Internet. In 1986 through the advent of NSFNET switched network, the Internet was used to provide access to supercomputer sites in the USA for research and education organisations. Following this, commercial Internet service providers emerged in the late 80s and 90s, and offered Internet access to the public. In 1990 APANET was decommissioned, and in 1995, following the decommission of NSFNET, the remaining restrictions on the use of the Internet for commercial traffic, which meant anyone could access the Internet.
The effect of the Internet on our everyday lives has been significant since 1995, in fact, in 1993 it was estimated that the Internet carried a mere 1% of the information that flowed through a means of two-way telecommunication, but this figure had increased to 51% IN 2000, and by 2007 more than 97% of the world’s telecommunication was shared through the Internet. Also while the Internet was created as a way of sharing research and information, its uses, as well as its popularity have also changed, and there is so much to do online now that was impossible to do just 15 years ago, such as buying products form certain companies online, finding old friends and long-lost relatives on a social networking site, or even applying for a new job.
This was just a very brief history of the Internet, how and why it was created, and how it became the powerful tool it is today. But while it’s easy to overlook where the Internet began, it’s a very important piece of history to know, as the Internet grows and we become more reliant on it to find what we’re looking for, from recipes, to goods and information, such as buying groceries or researching what emergency cooling towers do, the Internet is still very much evolving.