Brief history of the Internet

Before you could gain access to what is written in this article, you must have searched on your phone or access through a link that looks like ‘www.tobidelly.com‘. This is made possible through the internet. The internet has made it possible to get access to information around the globe. No matter how far you are, you can communicate with anyone conveniently because of a tool called the internet. You can access any website just because of the internet. Today we will be looking at how the internet came into being.

On February 7, 1958, the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) was launched and signed by the secretary of defence, Niel McElroy. This is important to the invention of the internet as we know it today. During the cold war in the 1950s, the United States was worried that the soviet union would attack from space and destroy their long-distance communication which was telephone lines and wires that could be damaged easily. In 1962, a scientist J.C.R Licklider working in the ARPA then suggested that computers should be connected to keep communication active in the event of a nuclear attack.  This network came to be known as the ARPA Network or ARPAnet.  This relied solely on packet switching which involves messages being broken into several parts and sent independently.

But the problem here was that the computers could not talk to each other. So, in 1968, the ARPA sent out a request for a communication technology that would allow different computers located around the country to be integrated together into one network. Twelve companies responded out of which Bolt, Beranek and Newman (BBN) won the contract. They were able to complete this project within a year and in 1969, the network’s nodes were turned on UCLA, Stanford, MIT, and the University of Utah.

Over the next decade, APRAnet grew and other networks came into existence. Different organisations were connected to different networks and these networks could not talk to each other because they used different protocols and languages. This problem was solved through the use of Transmission Control Protocol or Internet Protocol (TCP/IP). This allowed networks running on different protocols and languages to communicate.  As long as your network supported TCP/IP, you could communicate with other networks running TCP/IP. It is from this breakthrough that the word internet was carved out which simply means “an interconnected network of networks.”In the 1980s more computers were added to the internet and to access the internet then was not as easy as it is now. In order to access information on another server, you had to know how to type in the commands necessary to access it, as well as know the name of that device.

So, in 1990, Tim Berners-Lee introduced the World Wide Web project that made accessing the internet easily through the use of hypertext. This gained more popularity from the introduction of the Mosaic Browser and Netscape Navigator in 1993 and 1994 respectively. A browser is a tool that allows you to access the internet like what you are using now. Since then, the WWW has not looked back. For its first 10 years, 3.2billion people all over the world have used the internet.

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