The revolution of the internet, a.k.a. “cyberspace” never cease to amaze me; from its inception to where it is today, and the thought of where it will be in ten, twenty or even fifty years from now. The internet, as we know it, is a global revolution best described as a network which connects millions of computers for the purpose of exchanging data, news and opinions. A recent study conducted by Internet World Stats indicates that there are approximately 2.4 billion internet users world-wide which accounts for approximately 34% of the worlds’ population and growing!
Now, more than ever before, we are living in the information, and large sums of it; conveniently accessible to anyone who has access to a computer, tablet or mobile device, enjoying its ease to find and convenience through the internet. Some say this is great, some may argue that it’s TMI!! (too much information)
A trip down memory lane
Remember when internet connection was not only accessed, but also heard? There was that screeching sound of white noise followed by a series of distinct dongs. Large hard drives that made sounds as though there were large aircrafts landing nearby? Well, a lot has changed since then and that wasn’t too long ago, that was in 90’s.
It’s incredible to think that the concept of the internet began in the 50’s and 60’s. Prior to 1957 computers could only process one piece of information at a time, making processing extremely time consuming and laborious. It was then when time sharing started; which essentially means the processing of information with multiple users.
Understanding the Internet Roots
The foundation of modern internet evolved by combining three approaches:
- Scientific – CYCLADES (based in France)
- Military – RAND (based in America)
- Commercial – NPL (based out of England)
During the Cold War, the US founded DARPA (Defense Advance Research Project Agency) for the purpose of securing America’s leading technology. It was funded and then ARPANET was born which not only secured, but also accelerated the transfer of information (formerly transferred by people) and reduced research redundancy.
How information gets delivered to user
It was CYCLADAS that created the transfer of information through transfer nodes, by creating a physical layer into the computer itself. In order to do this, there needs to be compatibility, which has evolved to the creation of TCP/IP
TCP / IP refers to the compatibility between networks and merging them all together. The TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) is responsible for breaking data down into IP packets (smaller chunks) before they are sent, and for assembling the packets when they arrive, so therefore it’s the process in which your application software communicates with the network software and uses a connection.
IP (Internet Protocol) is responsible for sending the packets to the correct destination, so therefore is the communication from computer to computer and is connection less.
The here and now
As time has gone on and the internet has evolved, it’s very clear that this is the biggest revolution the world has ever seen. Starting with the WELL which, because of its creation it, helped set a foundation for things like Facebook, Twitter, and even social dating sites!! Who knew that there were going to be so many “on line broken hearts” in this new millennial? The internet continues to be the space for perpetual innovation and it’s endlessly re-inventing itself.