They said it ...
An excellent summary of
key milestones in Internet history
For anyone who has ever wondered how and why the Internet
was created comes this extensive essay, "The Roads and Crossroads of Internet's History."
With this document, users can follow the development of the Net from its
early stages as a military communication system to the multimedia extravaganza we know today.
Webcrawler: Internet User Guides Reviews *Hot* Web Sites
Internet Valley has got an excellent 9-part review of the Internet's
history and its relationship with the information revolution. Very informative and quite amusing at times
... A must for someone researching the evolution
of the Net.
The Historian and the Internet
College of Wooster, Ohio
- this silly Web
... I don't want to know anything about the
internet. I just wanna use it to my advantage....
If you've ever wondered
how the Internet came into being then be sure
to check this site out...
If you've never wondered how the Internet came into
being then go anyway. You shouldn't
be such a barbarian.
Hitch a lift
with us on the information superhighway
by LineOne, UK
...guide to 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 place? Gregory 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...
By Matthew Holt, NetworkWorld
Virtual Seminar for Teaching Literature
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 University,
Gregory R. Gromov's version is a fun to read and thoughtful look into the history of
the Internet and the WWW.
The Maine Science and Technology Foundation
USM - 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 Internets
History". Study all nine (9) pages linked to... as well as:
1. Road #1 "Information Ages
2. Road #2 "Internet at CERN: 1976
3. Road #3 "The 50 Years of the
Hypertext Concepts Evolution"
7. The team should write two or three questions
regarding the history of the Internet... Write your questions based on Gromovs
The Individual Learner
Within American Culture,
by Larry Garrett,
Social 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 Internet
Valley. 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 two hours.
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 -0800
Hi, I 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 the hell out of me.
SCU Computer Lab
Santa Clara University
28 Sep 1998 17:01:07 PDT
This site is a genuine pleasure to use! Thank you.
14 Sep 1998 22:59:13 -0700
This is one of the Great Classic 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,
should check 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 ..
by Robin Miller
Sights on the Net! 26 Oct.1998
... No, I am not a "killjoy")
... This site is skitzo man. A box of rocks is better
So, I am old fashion and
read left to right instead of up, down, right, down, left, link, back, up,
thread, 12pt, 18pt, 10pt.
How many feet was that first
Yeah, 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
AAAAAAAAAAAARGH! A lot
of interesting information, and I guess the designers are trying to look like an Internet scrapbook, but really... I'll come back with Lynx and read it
in plain text :)
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
by M. C. Morgan
College of Arts and Letters,
Department of English
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.
Whatever 6 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.
Are you a 12 year old?
1 Oct 1998
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 how stupid you are.
Thomas Ammon ip245.etv.net
24 Oct 1998 10:19:10 -0700 (PDT)
What better starting point is there in trying to
understand the internet and the World Wide Web than to use the internet to explore
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 document."
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
Now go explore
and remember what you're looking for:
-an understanding of the history of the
-the experience of exploring a topic through the internet.
Introduction for EDU
School of Education
Troy State University, Dothan
My name is Tehmus Mistry and I am a lecturer of new media at Manukau Institute of Technology in Auckland
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 to achieve.
However, with the fonts, colors and layout used it makes reading
difficult. A more classical approach could achieve the same
result with without making reading of the article a chore.
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 eyestrain.
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 seen
26 Oct 1998 06:06:39 -0800
|The Page 1 of the 9 pages' Story.
||Road 1: USA to Europe
Information Age Milestones
1866: " In the beginning was the
Smithsonian's National Museum
of American History
cable of 1858 was established to carry instantaneous communications
across the ocean for the first
Although the laying of this first cable
was seen as a landmark event in society, it was a
technical failure. It only remained in service a
Subsequent cables laid in 1866 were completely successful and compare to events
like the moon landing of
a century later.
... the cable ... remained in use for almost 100
A brief look from 1997:
Annual percentage growth rate of data traffic on
undersea telephone cables: 90
Number of miles of undersea telephone
1957: Sputnik has launched ARPA
President Dwight D. Eisenhower saw the need for the Advanced
Research Projects Agency (ARPA) after the Soviet
Union's 1957 launch of Sputnik.
The 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.
by Will Lewis & Randy Reitz
The Internet as a tool
to create "critical mass" of intellectual resources
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 close intellectual 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 weeks communicating.
There has to be some way of facilitating communicantion among people wit bout bringing
them together in one place.
The Computer 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, p.29
The first visible results
of Licklider's approach comes shortly:
1969: The first LOGs: UCLA --
According toVinton Cerf:
...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 Lake City.
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 monitor.
"We set 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,
"Do you see the L?"
"Yes, we see the L," came the response.
"We typed the O, and we asked, "Do you see the O."
"Yes, we see the O."
"Then we typed the G,
and the system crashed"...
Yet a revolution had
Source: Sacramento Bee, May 1, 1996, p.D1
public demonstration of ARPANET
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.
About 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
night" (Bob Bell)
Around about 1973 - 1975
I maintained PDP 10 hardware at SRI.
I 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.)
DEC Field Service
||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).
- 1961 Director of
Defense Research and Engineering (DDR&E) assigns a Command and Control Project to
- 1962 Information
Processing Techniques Office (IPTO) formed to coordinate ARPA's command and control
- 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 (ISTO).
- 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 Processing
The Internet has changed
the way we currently communicate...
But could the Internet have performed the function
it was originally designed for?
CNN: Would the internet
|| The Internet Post-Apocalypse
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
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 Europe...
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 ET
... 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..."
By CNN Interactive
The point 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, Sputnik.
Wars do 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
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 anarchy that worked,
and on a technical level, it still does, obviously.
REWIRED by David Hudson,
JOURNAL OF A STRAINED NET,
August 9th, 1996
That Were Built By Ike
"I like Ike"
was an irressistible slogan in 1952. About half century later, there are reasons
"to like Ike" even more ...
|Many people don't
realize that there is more than a metaphor
which connects the
In 1957, while responding to
the threat of the Soviets in general and the success of Sputnik in particular, President Dwight
Eisenhower created both the Interstate
Highway System and the Advanced Research
Steve Driscoll, Online Computer Library Center Inc.
|what exactly does it
"A term often used by the media to describe
|by The Internet Dictionary
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 superhighway.
|by Internet Glossary ,
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
|by Online Dictionary
Fortunately Nice Lady kindly agreed to clarify the root
| Tipper 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
|Photo of Tipper and Al Gore wedding:
20-th year BW
|Gore has 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 Hill
24 Jun 1986: Albert Gore (D-TN) introduce S 2594
Supercomputer Network Study Act of 1986
21 March 1994: Gore's
Buenos Aires Speech
International Telecommunications Union:
"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...
Samuel Morse (1791-1872)
|Samuel 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
|Once he 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 wire system.
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
... I 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 reach him.
In his 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
Road #1 | Road #2 | Next | Web | Road #3 | Hypertext | Xanadu | Stats | Conclusion
or explore one page version of the Story
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Internet Valley, Inc.