must for someone
researching the evolution of the
The Historian and the Internet
College of Wooster, Ohio
yoav - this silly Web site. ... I don't want to
about the internet. I just wanna use it to my advantage....
you've ever wondered how the
Internet came into being then be sure to check
this site out...
you've never wondered how the Internet came into being then
You shouldn't be such a
Hitch a lift with us on the information superhighway
the best networking resources on the world's
biggest bookshelf -- the World Wide Web. History of the
Internet. We all
need it. We all want it. But how did it happen in the first
Gromov provides a ... brief (one page) and comprehensive (nine page) history of the
Worldwide Web before it was the Net we all know and love...
Matthew Holt, NetworkWorld
I. Some Basic Concepts
The History of the Internet
It is clear that the Internet is one of the most fashionable areas of
computing. It is effecting all subjects in Higher
Education, not only altering teaching opportunities
because of its new perspectives on communication and dissemination, but
also opening up exciting new resources for
students and lecturers alike. For a history of the Internet readers should
consult Gregory Gromov's The Roads
and Crossroads of the Internet's History.
Computing Unit of Oxford
Gregory R. Gromov's version is a
fun to read and
thoughtful look into
the history of the Internet and the WWW.
Maine Science and Technology Foundation
Professional Development Center
Access the website designed by Gregory R.
Gromov and published at ...
6. The primary
document on the ‘View from Internet Valley"
Homepage is "The Roads and
Crossroads of Internet’s History". Study all nine (9) pages linked to... as well as:
1. Road #1 "Information Age’s Milestones"
2. Road #2 "Internet at CERN: 1976 - 1990"
3. Road #3 "The
50 Years of the Hypertext Concept’s Evolution"
team should write two or three
questions regarding the history of the Internet... Write your
questions based on
The Individual Learner Within American
Foundations of American Education
Troy State University
This is an entertaining (if potentially confusing) account of Net history,
part of a large on-line hyperbook called View from Internet Valley, written by a
California Internet consulting company called
You should only read this after you've become familiar with Net history, because if you
start here you may well get confused. But if
you know Net history, this site will provide some fascinating insights and connections
between events and people. Estimated Surfing Time: at least
Open Learning Agency : learning resources to support the K-12 education system in British Columbia, Canada,
Read through your history- wonderful!
25 Oct 1998 11:04:42
don't mean to be
mean, but your website is very hard to understand. Next time you make a website
about the history of something, don't jump
around as much! You confused
hell out of
SCU Computer Lab
28 Sep 1998 17:01:07
This site is a genuine pleasure to use! Thank you.
14 Sep 1998 22:59:13 -0700
This is one of the
Websites. It's a history of the
Internet and what led up to it, told in hypertext, both eloquently and chaotically, as strange in its own way
as the Mel Brooks movie, History of
the World, Part One. But it's one [REDACTED} of a lot more accurate
than the Brooks movie. All Internet users, even those of you who just
signed up for Web-TV or AOL last week and are still fumbling around,
out this site.
When you jump into this online story, make sure you
have a couple of hours free. It takes that
long to read. Imagine a
collaborative writing project that tells you more than you
ever wanted to know (and more than probably thought there was to
tell) about the Internet, starting with the laying of the first telegraph
cable across the Atlantic in 1858
(which was NOT a success, BTW).
You'll learn why the WWW Consortium [W3C] is based
at a physics lab in Switzerland called CERN, instead of at a computer research
center where you'd logically expect it to be, and why CERN doesn't even
stand for the lab's real name -- in either English or French, along with
lots of other neat factoids that'll come in handy if you ever find
yourself playing Trivial Pursuit: The Internet Edition.
There's also a picture of Al and
Tipper Gore at their wedding, twenty years before the
WWW came into existence. And I'm not going to tell you why it's
there. You can find out for yourself. (And if you
want to be a killjoy
you can post the reason below ..
Best High-Tech Sights on the Net! 26 Oct.1998
... No, I am not a "killjoy")
This site is skitzo man. A box of rocks is better organized.
read left to right
instead of up, down, right, down, left, link, back, up, thread, 12pt,
was that first
that's all I remember ..
... I won't
spoil the Al Gore allusion
on this site ..., but I'm not convinced the anectdote isn't
spun by Democratic election committee's
lot of interesting
information, and I guess the designers are trying to look like
scrapbook, but really... I'll come back with
Lynx and read it in plain
Read The Roads and Crossroads of Internet 's
History, Gregory R. Gromov, et al. This is a hypertext of nine main pages with side links. It is
written as a kind of mosaic rather than as a straight
narrative, including email questions
and answers, fragments of interviews, and the like. It focuses primarily
on the Web and hypertext over the Internet. As well, it plays with typographical design and page layout in curious ways.
College of Arts and
Bemidji State University, MN
... I believe that your site has some useful
information but, quite frankly,
I'm not even going
to read it. The indiscriminate use of font sizes, font types,
colors, and spacing gives mean absolute headache.
year-old designed your site
obviously does not know much about design...
8 Oct 1998
I am looking for resources on the history of the
internet. I will not include
any of your reportings. It
seems like a great piece of work, although I
cannot trust the
reliability of it. You've misspelled and mistyped an amazing number of words throughout.
12 year old?
I am very interested in the history of the
net, that's why I came to your
site, but the way you put it together is really annoying. <B>Bold</B> and <I>Italics</I> every other word really gets on
your nerves. It would be a lot easier to
read if you didn't overuse these. If you love those tags so much, save
them for when only you are looking at them, because to everyone
else, they are just showing
24 Oct 1998 10:19:10 -0700 (PDT)
better starting point is there in trying to understand the
internet and the World Wide Web than to use
the internet to explore its history. There are several web sites covering
this topic. Here is one for you to explore, The Roads and Crossroads of Internet 's History by
Gregory R. Gromov. This
does not necessarily mean it's the best one, but it is an excellent history of the internet and a
good example of a "web
As you begin reading the document, you should soon
discover that "reading" this web document is not
like reading an article in a book or journal. Visually books and journals have
pretty standard layouts and styles, though there is some variation. But one
would be hard pressed to find any standard layout or style for web documents. You also should experience
what "hypertext" is and why this experience
is more like exploring
than reading. But just like an
exploration, it is up to you how extensively you explore. And just like
any explorer you may end up "lost."
Don't panic, just click on one of the links at the top of the
window to return to one of the "pages" in the
document. There are links at the top to each of the nine parts to this document.
Now go explore and remember what you're looking for:
-an understanding of the history of the
experience of exploring a topic through the internet.
Troy State University, Dothan
is Tehmus Mistry and I am a lecturer of new media at Manukau Institute of Technology in Auckland New
I found your
article " History of Internet and WWW: The Roads and Crossroads of
Internet History by Gregory R. Gromov" through a search engine and started
reading it. However, I found the presentation style extremely hard to read
and this unfortunately has been the hindrance to reading the article and
enjoying the articles content.
I can see the style and emphasis the article is trying
However, with the fonts, colors and
layout used it makes reading
more classical approach
could achieve the same result with without making reading of the article a
Since the article is
recommended by many organizations as a good read
with regards to the history of the Internet, it would
be appropriate to make the article an enjoyable read and less of an
If you feel you
do not have the time to change the look and feel, I will be happy to
assign the task to one of my students to change its look and feel.
30 Sep 1998 18:39:28 -0700
Great site very informative, interesting type usage...
20 Oct 1998 16:53:40 -0700
tnx for your
wonderful history of the inet, by far the best I have
26 Oct 1998 06:06:39 -0800
history website is freaky. The fonts
and colors don't look like anything I've ever
seen. I like it!
Thank you for
telling the history of the internet in a manner that I could
comfortably read, follow and understand. You guys were
obviously in touch with your potential target
13 Apr 1999 18:40:31
Thank you for
the great site (and sight), friendly, easy to read and gives a new perspective on the Net
12 Apr 1999
I love the fonts and colours. Long may individuality live!!!! Well done on an
interesting and informative piece of work
Apr 1999 15:52:15
The Roads and Crossroads of Internet
History by Gregory Gromov is a nine-part history of the ‘Net posted by
Internet Valley, Inc. While possibly not the first place in the pool where a non-swimmer
should take the plunge, this colorful and quirky site can be a
great resource where an informed ‘Net surfer can come and let hypertext do
the walking and the inventors of the ‘Net themselves do the talking. Many visitors have found the eccentric
choices of typeface and
color to be
disconcerting, but it’s worth clicking around here.
Public Health Library, UC Berkeley
What really led up to the
development of the Internet? Why is it so important to us? How did it
expand from its military origins into the electronic highway we
know it to be? Gregory R.
Gromov provides answers to these and other questions in "The
Roads and Crossroads of Internet History." Gromov presents an
interesting look at the Net in the beginning, complete with timelines
and milestones in not only Internet History but providing
snippets of World History as well. His approach may
seem confusing, even messy at first glance, but give it a moment,
you'll see how he weaves the history of the Web together. It's creative, it's informative and it's well
done--it's what the Web is all
A brief look from 1997:
Annual percentage growth rate of data
traffic on undersea telephone cables: 90
Number of miles of undersea telephone cables:
186,000 Source: WinTreese
1957: Sputnik has launched
President Dwight D.
Eisenhower saw the need for the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) after the Soviet Union's 1957 launch of Sputnik.
organization united some of America's most brilliant people, who developed the United
States' first successful satellite in
18 months. Several years later ARPA began to focus on computer networking and communications technology.
In 1962, Dr. J.C.R.
Licklider was chosen to head ARPA's
research in improving the military's use of computer technology.
Licklider was a visionary
who sought to make the government's use of computers more interactive. To quickly expand technology,
Licklider saw the need to move ARPA's contracts from the private sector to universities and laid the foundations for
what would become the ARPANET.
Atlantic cable of 1858 and Sputnik of 1957 were two basic milestone of the
Internet prehistory. You might want also to take a look on
the Telecommunications and Computers
The Internet as a tool to create "critical mass" of intellectual
To appreciate the import ante the new
computer-aided communication can have, one must consider the
dynamics of "critical mass," as it applies
to cooperation in creative endeavor. Take any problem worthy of
the name, and you find only a few people who can contribute
effectively to its solution. Those people must be brought into
partnership so that their
ideas can come into contact
with one another. But bring these people together
physically in one place to form a team, and you have trouble, for the most creative people are often not the best team players, and there are not enough
top positions in a single organization to keep them all happy. Let
them go their separate ways,
and each creates his own empire, large or
small, and devotes more time to the role of emperor than to the
role of problem solver. The principals still get together at
meetings. They still visit one another. But the time scale of
their communication stretches out, and the correlations among
mental models degenerate between meetings so that it may take a
year to do a week’s communicating. There has to be some way of
facilitating communicantion among people wit bout bringing them
together in one place.
as a Communication Device by J.C.R. Licklider, Robert W.
Taylor, Science and Technology, April 1968. Online
republish by Systems Research Center of DEC,
The first visible results of
Licklider's approach comes
1969: The first LOGs: UCLA --
...the UCLA people proposed to DARPA to organize and run a Network Measurement Center for the ARPANET project...
Around Labor Day in
1969, BBN delivered an Interface
Message Processor (IMP) to UCLA that
was based on a Honeywell DDP 516, and when they turned it on, it
just started running. It was hooked by 50 Kbps circuits to two other sites (SRI and UCSB) in the four-node network: UCLA, Stanford Research Institute (SRI), UC
Santa Barbara (UCSB), and the
University of Utah in Salt
||The plan was unprecedented: Kleinrock, a pioneering computer science
professor at UCLA, and his small group of graduate
students hoped to log onto the Stanford computer and try to send it some
data.They would start by typing "login,"
and seeing if the letters appeared on the far-off
up a telephone connection between us and the guys at SRI...," Kleinrock ... said in an
interview: "We typed
the L and we asked on the phone,
see the L?"
"Yes, we see
the L," came the response.
the O, and we asked, "Do you see the O."
"Yes, we see the O."
"Then we typed the G, and the
Yet a revolution had begun"...
Source: Sacramento Bee, May
1, 1996, p.D1
1972: First public demonstration of
In late 1971, Larry Roberts at DARPA decided that
people needed serious motivation to get
things going. In October 1972 there was to be
an International Conference on Computer
Communications, so Larry asked Bob Kahn
at BBN to organize a public demonstration of the ARPANET.
It took Bob about a year to get everybody far
enough along to demonstrate a bunch of applications on the ARPANET. The
idea was that we would install a packet
switch and a Terminal Interface
Processor or TIP in the basement of
the Washington Hilton Hotel, and actually
let the public come in and use the ARPANET, running
applications all over the U.S ....
The demo was a roaring success, much to the surprise of the people at
AT&T who were skeptical about whether
it would work.
one - two years after the first online demo of how "actually let the public come in and use the ARPANET, running
applications all over the U.S
...." (Vinton Cerf) the NET became really busy
especially "every Friday
Around about 1973 -
1975 I maintained PDP 10 hardware at SRI.
remember hearing that there was an ARPANET "conference" on the Star Trek game every Friday
night. Star Trek was a text based game where you used
photon torpedos and phasers to blast Klingons.
I used to have a pretty
cool logical map of the ARPANET at the time but my ex-wife
got it. (She got everything but the debts.)
||It seems we found "a pretty
cool logical map of the ARPANET" which Bob has kindly
reminded us about .
Logical map of the
ARPANET, April 1971
- 1958 Advanced Research
Projects Agency (ARPA)
created by Department of Defense (DoD).
Defense Research and Engineering (DDR&E) assigns a Command
and Control Project to ARPA.
Processing Techniques Office (IPTO) formed to coordinate
ARPA's command and control research.
- 1972 ARPA renamed Defense Advanced
Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
- 1986 The technical scope of IPTO expands and
it becomes the Information Science and Technology Office
- 1991 ISTO splits into the Computing Systems
Technology Office (CSTO) and the Software and Intelligent
By Charles Babbage Institute
Center For the History of Information
University of Minnesota
The Internet has changed the way we currently
But could the Internet have performed the function it was originally designed
CNN: Would the internet
survive nuclear war?
There's a common myth
that the Internet could survive a nuclear attack.
If the Internet, or pieces of it, did
withstand such a war, how would it be used post-apocalypse?
Would the Internet itself be used to wage
Would it become a sole source of
information for the surviving masses?
Or would it be too cluttered with dead
sites and falsehoods to be worth anything?
B. Porter - 05:09pm Oct 3, 1998 ET ... It is very doubtful the Internet would
survive ANY sort of large-scale nuclear attack.... A few years
ago a single "surge" in a major West Coast power line, caused a
large portion of the West Coast to be blacked out for several hours.
(If you live on the West Coast you probably remember this.) The
effect of so many power-stations going out at once would be
catastrophic to the power grid for ALL of North America, and Western
Finally, however, the biggest problem, as was
previously mentioned, is the EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse - ed.)
pulse. The first missiles to fly ... would then explode, at
high-altitude.... These explosions would result in an unprecedented
EMP pulse that would cripple virtually 90% (Military estimates put
this at closer to 95% of more) of all electronics in the U.S...
Almost anything with a microchip in it would be gone.... Imagine the
effect of this...
D. Callahan - 09:42am Oct 6, 1998
... This question is somewhat stupid: In
keeping with the Cold War theme, I'll end with a quote from
Kruscheve (spelling): "In a nuclear war-the
living will envy the dead..."
that I do want to dust off and raise again is that ARPA wouldn't have happened, if
what used to be the Soviet
Union hadn't shaken complacent U.S. awake with a tin can in the sky,
wonders for the advancement of technology, and the Cold one was certainly no exception.
The way to get a technology advanced is to gather a lot of really smart people under one
roof and get them to concentrate on a single project. Of
course, that takes some organization and money. Where does
that come from? But that's another can of worms - to be opened with
relish at a later date. In this case, it was the only body that had
a stake in making sure the Net worked - the government.
What with the Cold War in full swing and all, the
military, specifically its think tank
the Rand Corporation, was
concerned that if the war ever got hot and large chunks of the
country were vaporized, those phone lines (not to mention
considerable segments of the population) would be radioactive dust.
And the top brass wouldn't be able to get in touch and carry on.
Thus the packets bouncing from node to node, each of those nodes
able to send, receive and pass on data with the same authority
as any other. It was
worked, and on a technical level, it still does,
REWIRED by David Hudson,
JOURNAL OF A STRAINED NET,
August 9th, 1996
The Roads That
Were Built By Ike
Ike" was an irressistible slogan in 1952.
About half century later, there are reasons "to
like Ike" even more ...
don't realize that
there is more than a metaphor which connects
Interstate Highway System
In 1957, while responding to the
threat of the Soviets in general and the success of Sputnik in
particular, President Dwight
Eisenhower created both
and the Advanced Research Projects Agency, or ARPA.
Computer Library Center Inc.
|what exactly does it
term often used by the media to describe the Internet."
|by The Internet Dictionary , Bradford, England |
there are lots of different meanings:
Superhighway/Infobahn: The terms were coined to describe a possible
upgrade to the existing
Internet through the use of fiber
optic and/or coaxial cable
to allow for high speed data transmission. This highway
does not exist - the Internet of today is not an information
|by Internet Glossary , SquareOne
superhighway or I-way - this is a buzzword from a speech by Vice
President Al Gore that refers to the Clinton/Gore
administration's plan to deregulate communication services and widen the
scope of the Internet by opening carriers, such as television cable, to data
communication. The term is widely used to mean the Internet,
also referred to as the infobahn (I-bahn).|
|by Online Dictionary ,
Confusing, isn't it?
Fortunately Nice Lady kindly
agreed to clarify the
Gore:"When my husband Vice President Gore served in the House of
Representatives, he coined the phrase "information superhighway" to describe how this
exciting new medium would one day transport us all. Since then, we
have seen the Internet and World Wide Web revolutionize the way
people interact, learn, and communicate." |
|Photo of Tipper and Al
Gore wedding: 20-th
year BW (Before Web)
become the point man in the Clinton
administration's effort to build a national information highway much as his
father, former Senator Albert
Gore, was a principal architect of the interstate highway
system a generation
or more earlier.
Figures in the Development of the Internet ...
The University of
North Carolina at Chapel
Jun 1986: Albert Gore
(D-TN) introduce S 2594
Study Act of 1986
March 1994: Gore's Buenos
"By means of electricity, the
world of matter has become a great
nerve, vibrating thousands of miles in a breathless point
of time ... The round globe is a vast ... brain, instinct with intelligence!"
This was not the
observation of a physicist--or a neurologist. Instead, these
visionary words were written in 1851 by Nathaniel Hawthorne, one of my
country's greatest writers, who was inspired by the development of
the telegraph. Much as Jules
Verne foresaw submarines and moon landings, Hawthorne
foresaw what we are now poised to bring into being...
Morse was a professional painter whose talent in portrait
work was well known. However, his career as an amateur
scientist would soon overshadow his artistic endeavors. |
Morse went from painting to patents when
he began investigating Joseph Henry's development of the
electromagnet. Henry's success in sending the first electric
impulse along a wire in 1831sent Morse to the drawing board
to develop a way to use this discovery in the field of
convinced Congress to sanction the first long-distance
telegraph line, an iron wire was strung between posts from
Baltimore, Maryland to Washington, D.C. -- a
distance of 37 miles. On May 24, 1844,
the first telegraph message, "What hath God wrought," was
successfully sent and received along the first telegraph
In 1835, he developed the prototype
of the telegraph, which used magnetic transmitters and
receivers to send a pattern of signals across a wire.
Two years later, Morse gave up painting
to work full-time on his invention. He soon developed a
language of signals called Morse
Code, which used a combination of short and long
signals called dots and dashes to represent numbers and
letters in the alphabet. All that was needed was a network
of wires to send messages across great distances.
Source:The Lemelson-MIT Prize Program
opened by quoting Nathaniel Hawthorne, inspired by Samuel Morse's invention of the
telegraph. Morse was also a famous portrait artist in the
U.S.--his portrait of President James Monroe hangs today in the
White House. While Morse was working on a portrait of General
Lafayette in Washington, his wife, who lived about 500 kilometers
away, grew ill and died. But it took seven days for the news to
grief and remorse, he began to wonder if it were possible to erase
barriers of time and space, so that no one would be unable to
reach a loved one in time of need. Pursuing this thought, he came
to discover how to use electricity to convey messages, and so he
invented the telegraph and, indirectly, the ITU."
Go To the next
Page of the Story
See also: Telecommunications
and Computers prehistory
Road #1 | Road
#2 | Next | Web
#3 | Hypertext | Xanadu
| Stats | Conclusion
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©1995-2003 Gregory Gromov