Mar 29, 2011
What do you think is the greatest invention man has ever made? Automobiles? Airplanes? Transistors? Nuclear Bombs? INTERNET? Yes, I think its the INTERNET. Internet provides us a way of communicating with people from different parts of the world. Today information can spread easily and fast with just simple mouse clicks. You do not have to wait for months when expecting a mail from a friend or family member. In just minutes, no in just seconds the information you’ve been waiting for already arrives at your computer. With the help of different social networking sites, the exchange of information happens in real-time. Of course you’re dependent on your ISP for your internet upload and download speeds. Can you compare the number of text messages you received during Christmas of 2009 with the number of text messages you received last Christmas of 2010? Did you notice that less of your friends use SMS to greet you? Instead they use Facebook to send their greetings. Indeed, the internet technology is changing the way we communicate.
Let’s have a short history. Internet originated from “ARPANET” which is funded by the Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). It was mainly used in exchanging information ranging from technical to personal information. ARPANET serves as their electronic post office during that time. ARPANET was first composed of two nodes from UCLA and Menlo Park California.
The exchange of information between these nodes was mainly based on the study of Paul Baran for the USAF. He suggested that for a network to become robust and can survive during a disaster, packet switching should be used. The idea is that during communication a “message block” or simply “packets” can be send out separately and then “rejoin” at the receiving end.
After further development the ARPANET grew into 15 sites by the end of 1971. As more and more locations are connected to the network Internet was born. It began on January 1, 1983 when all hosts from the ARPANET were switched over from the older NCP protocols thus the first TCP/IP-based wide-area network becomes operational. The word “Internet” was then described as a single globally distributed TCP/IP network based on the TCP protocols.
So as we go on our daily normal lives, just for once let us give thanks to the man behind this great idea. Paul Baran a.k.a Father of Modern Internet passed away at the age of 84 on March 26, 2011 in Palo Alto California.