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History of the Internet

History of the Internet for Kids

A busy internet cafe in China

We are all familiar with computers and the Internet, and yet few people know the history of this amazing invention, so let’s look at how the Internet began.

Almost 40 years ago, the US Defence Department first set the stage for the Internet with a network that was called ARPANET. This was a research program that was begun to discover new ways to link different networks together for government and scientific use. What they hoped to develop was a method of communicating information packets among many computers at the same time.

The first name given to this project was the “Internetting” and the networks that resulted became known by the shortened form, the “Internet”. Protocols were developed and these were called the TCP or Transmission Control Protocol and the IP or the Internet Protocol. These are terms that are still in use today in the computer world.

Originally, the idea for this type of networking by computers was thought of in 1962 by JCR Licklider at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He truly was the first person to envision and describe a world that was linked by computers for the express purpose of sharing information. In the US, the first Internet attempts were begun for universities and research departments at the government level. This was considered to be a great way to share ideas, information, and resources.

Of course, there were many challenges and obstacles that had to be overcome in order that the idea could actually take shape. However it was not long before the Internet achieved success that was never really thought possible just a few decades earlier. Even in the 70s, use of computers at universities and businesses was very limited, but by the late 80s, the use of the computers was beginning to move beyond business, educational and government settings. Today the Internet is available across the globe, in cafes, homes, stores and even in remote wilderness areas.

No one owns the Internet, but access to it can be controlled by some companies who often charge a fee to provide customers with a link to the service. Now countries all over the world are connected through satellite uplinks, fibre optic cables, computers and telephone lines and systems. The Internet lets people from around the world change ideas, and share information at any hour of the day or night. Today the Internet provides a person with a way to study, read and learn about anything that is of interest to them.

This is an original news article © The Kids Window

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