Okay, so you’re doing your typical everyday web routine. You check how many new followers you have on Twitter and Instagram. You open YouTube to see if your video has reached at least a thousand views. You then open your two favorite search engines to do research on your project on Chemical Engineering, and after that you download the latest episode of NCIS. It’s such a relief that we can get what we need over the counter, the Internet counter that is. But way before SEO, www dot and needing link detox service for your website’s performance, the World Wide Web was way simpler.
If we make an internet history timeline, we will learn the amazing evolution of one of the greatest by-products of modern day technology – the Internet. Let’s travel back in time to take a look at some of the most important and significant events that led to the revolutionized era of the World Wide Web.
Thank the Russians
The event that forever changed the world of technology, and most likely was one of the reasons why we have the Internet today, is the launch of Russia’s Sputnik, the earth’s first artificial satellite, in 1957. In response to this, the United States created the Advanced Research Projects Agency, otherwise known as ARPA, under the Department of Defense, to match Russia’s achievement. They designed a computer system called the ARPANET, the Internet’s predecessor.
In 1958, Bell Labs specialists invented the modem, which enabled communication between computers. Three years later, Leonard Kleinrock pioneered packet-switching on his MIT doctoral thesis. In 1965, Thomas Marill and Lawrence Roberts teamed up to create the first Wide Area Network (WAN), through an ARPA contract. The following year, Robert Taylor of ARPA initiated the ARPANET project which would eventually mark the beginning of the Internet.
From ARPANET to Internet
UCLA developed Host Level Protocols for the ARPANET in 1968. This served as the foundation of the Internet’s protocols today. In 1972, a new innovation was introduced when Ray Tomlinson sent the very first electronic message, more popularly known today as the e-mail. The term TCP/IP was developed in 1973, allowing various computers to have interconnection and communication with each other. Only a year later, Vint Cerf and Robert Kahn published a paper where they coined the term ‘Internet’.
During the year 1983, the ARPANET transitioned to the TCP/IP protocol thus opening doors for our modern Internet. In the same year, Paul Mockapetris invented another familiar term, the DNS or Domain Name System. In 1985, Quantum Computer Services, which would later change its name to America Online, was launched. It offered email, news and other information. After 3 years, an Internet virus called Internet worm spread and temporarily shut down approximately 10% of the world’s servers. Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web in 1989, and later that year, Robert Cailliau together with Nicola Pellow, developed the very first operating system for MAC computers.
And then there was Google, and a whole lot more
Stephen Kent pioneered Internet security systems. Linux was created in the year 1990, and in 1991, the World Wide Web became available to the public for the first time. Dr. John Cioffi standardized the DSL in the United States in 1993. During the same year, NCSA released the browser ‘Mosaic’. In 1996, Dr. Henning Schulzrinne co-developed important protocols enabling VOIP. Non-techie users of the Internet were introduced to ‘blog’ in the year 1998. Our favorite search engine Google opened its first headquarters in California that very same year.
Only a year later, Mitchell Baker helped found the Mozilla Project of the Mozilla Foundation. That very same year, Craig Newmark found Craigslist which would eventually become one of the most visited websites in the world. The millennium year marks the Love Bug year which had catastrophic effects on the web as a whole. Following shortly was the launch of what was to become the king of the Google searches, Jimmy Wales’ Wikipedia. Four years later, another platform revolutionized the already advanced Internet environment – Facebook, eventually making Mark Zuckerberg an enormously popular and rich guy. In 2005, Youtube was introduced and I don’t think we need more descriptions to explain how popular it is today.
It’s truly amazing what technology can do and how far it has come. Putting into consideration all the brilliant minds that had contributed to the development of the Internet, I think it’s safe to say that this is one of the best, and most efficient innovations of our time. Can you imagine living in today’s world without the Internet? Unimaginable.
The Internet has made itself indispensable to each of us. It gives us information, let’s us express ourselves freely and just straight out gives us what we need. We can even do online jobs like SEO writing at the comfort of our homes; luxuries that our ancestors during the Stone Age never imagined possible.