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The Internet’s History

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 and some of the major uses of it.

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 Wide Web in a relatively innocuous newsgroup, “alt. hypertext. ” The ability to combine words, pictures, and sounds on Web pages excites many computer programmers who see the potential for publishing information on the Internet in a way that can be as easy as using a word processor.

Marc Andreesen and a group of student programmers at NCSA (the National Center for Supercomputing Applications located on the campus of University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign) will eventually develop a graphical browser for the World Wide Web called Mosaic and by 1993 Mosaic becomes the first graphics-based Web browser. By 1993 traffic on the NSF backbone network exceeds 1 trillion bytes per month, and the first audio and video broadcasts take place over a portion of the Internet known as the “MBONE. ” More than 1,000,000 hosts are now part of the Internet and it expands at a 341,634% annual growth rate.

In 1995 NSFNET reverts back to a research project, leaving the Internet in commercial hands. The Web now comprises the bulk of Internet traffic. James Gosling and a team of programmers at Sun Microsystems release an Internet programming language called Java, which radically alters the way applications and information can be retrieved, displayed, and used over the Internet. As the Internet celebrates its 25th anniversary in 1996, the military strategies that influenced its birth become historical footnotes.

Approximately 40 million people are connected to the Internet. More than $1 billion per year changes hands at Internet shopping malls, and Internet related companies like Netscape are the darlings of high-tech investors. Users in almost 150 countries around the world are now connected to the Internet. The number of computer hosts approaches 10 million. Within 30 years, the Internet has grown from a Cold War concept for controlling the tattered remains of a post-nuclear society to the Information Superhighway.

Just as the railroads of the 19th century enabled the Machine Age, and revolutionized the society of the time, the Internet takes us into the Information Age, and profoundly affects the world in which we live. In present day people are telecommuting over the Internet, allowing them to choose where to live based on quality of life, not proximity to work. Many cities view the Internet as a solution to their clogged highways and fouled air. Schools use the Internet as a vast electronic library, with untold possibilities. Doctors use the Internet to consult with colleagues half a world away.

The Internet even offers a single Global Village; it threatens to create a 2nd class citizenship among those without access. As a new generation grows up as accustomed to communicating through a keyboard as in person, life on the Internet will become an increasingly important part of life on Earth. The Age of the Internet has arrived. How It Works In Present Day The Internet works by a number of connections one leading to a bigger one and then somehow finding where it wants to be. So how does it do this? First it begins at the users PC where that is equipped to send and receive all variety of audio and video.

From there is the data goes out through the PCs communication to connect the Users to the “Local Loop” which is the Internet service provider such as AOL or some other online provider. In there the system decipher what kind of data is being sent and at this location it tells the data what type of data it is and where to go. Examples of the different kinds of data are examples of this are Domain Name Server, E-mail, and newsgroups. From there it is sent to the ISP backbone which interconnects the ISP’s, POPs, AND interconnects the ISP to other ISP’s and online content.

At this location the data is routed to the desired location and the online content they user was looking for is found. The data is then sent back through the system to the original user. The information that is on the data coming back could have came from a wide array of sources such as books, finical markets, embedded chips or even made up by someone trying to fool the user. Many Things To Do Over The Internet There is a plethora of things to do over the Internet and it has made a huge impact of society.

Over the Internet people can communicate through chatting or email, the can learn just about anything they want to on the vast number of websites dedicated to just about everything, a person could purchase something over it by the means of e commerce, and they can even listen to radio stations from far away through their computer. This is just a short list of the many things that could be done over the Internet but now this paper will discuss some of the main features of the Internet. E Commerce E commerce is doing business over the Internet.

This is done by first the user logs onto the companys site and searches around on it until they find the desired product they want to buy. Then usually a from will come up and the user will enter vital finical information by either putting down his credit card number or other means of money. Then the data is encrypted and sent over the Internet. This is dangerous because if the data is not encrypted enough a person may be able to break the encryption and obtain the purchasers finical information. This is one of the major concerns of the purchasers and why some people do now buy things online.

When the data is transmitted safely to the seller then the transaction is a complete and the item is sent to the user by some from and the purchasers finical account information is updated. The negative sides of this type of business is that since many people are afraid of someone steeling their information and because of the time shipping the product to the purchaser the people do not purchase online. Even though some people think this there is a tremendous amount of people that do their business over the net and e commerce has become a huge player in the finical environment.

E-mail is the electronic exchange of information. An e mail or electronic message is just like a letter you can send in the mail but instead of the user getting a hard copy, the user gets a soft copy. It works by first a message sender uses mail software, called a client, to compose a document, possibly including attachments such as tables, photographs or even a voice or video recording. System software, called Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), divides the message into packets and adds information about how each packet should be handled-for instance, in what order packets were transmitted from the sender.

Packets are sent to a mail submission server, a computer on the internal network of a company or an Internet service provider. Internet mail addresses attached to each message are in the form “mailbox@domainname” –one specific example being “editors@sciam. com. ” The multipart domain name denotes a top-level domain (“. com”) following the second-level domain (“sciam”). A message is delivered to an individual or a group by the mailbox name (“editors”). Then it goes to the mail submission server which converts the domain name of the recipient’s mail address into a numeric Internet Protocol (IP) address.

It does this by querying domain name servers interspersed throughout the Internet. For example, the mail submission server can first request from the “root” name server the whereabouts of other servers that store information about “. com” domains. or it can then interrogate the “. com” name server for the location of the specific “sciam. com” name server or a final request to the “sciam. com” name server provides the IP address for the computer that receives the mail for sciam. com, which is then attached to each message packet. Next it is sent to routers that are dispersed throughout the Internet and read the IP address on a packet.

It then relays it toward its destination by the most efficient path and because of fluctuating traffic over data lines, trying to transmit a packet directly to its destination is not always the fastest way. The packets of a single message may travel along different routes, shuttling through 10 or so routers before their journey’s end. It eventully makes it to its destination mail server places the packets in their original order, according to the instructions contained in each packet, and stores the message in the recipient’s mailbox.

The recipient’s client software can then display the message. E-mail has revolutionized the way people communicate. Now instead of waiting a day or two for the post office to mail something a e mail can get it to the desired location just about anywhere in the world in seconds. A sender can also now send files over within an e mail as an attachment. One of its best qualities is that for the most part e mailing is free. The only costs that might be incurred are though the service provider or some other accessing fee.

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