History of the Internet and Web
If I have seen farther than others, it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants.
- Isaac Newton
© 1996-2007 - Anthony Anderberg (email@example.com)
announced by Paul
Lindner, Farhad Anklesaria, and Mark McCahill from the University of Minnesota.
The mailing lists www-interest (now www-announce) firstname.lastname@example.org are started.
Linus Torvalds announces
Linux version 0.02.
Apple Computer releases QuickTime version 1.0
- 700 BC
- Homing pigeons carry
messages in ancient Greece.
- May 4th
- In a letter Florentine merchant Francesco Lapi uses the @ sign for
the first time in recorded history.
- Galileo Galilei discovers the moon's terrain and Jupiter's four
largest moons. His view of the heavens as a place started a scientific
revolution, and would forever change how we view the universe around us.
- Danish physicist Hans Christian Orsted discovers that a wire carrying an electric
current creates a field that deflects a magnetic needle, a discovery that would
eventually lead to the creation of the telegraph.
- William F. Cooke and Charles Wheatstone install the first railway telegraph in England.
- May 24th
- Samuel F.B. Morse demonstrated a magnetic telegraph using his Morse Code to send the message
'What hath God wrought' from Baltimore to Washington.
- The first transatlantic cable is installed between Ireland and
Canada. Unfortunately the signal was so weak and indistinguishable
from background noise that it took hours to send a few words. The
owners tried to fix the situation by boosting the voltage from 600
to 2000 volts, melting the cable's insulation and leaving it dead
in the water. Later cables installed in 1866 were successful and
remained in use for almost 100 years.
- April 3rd
- The Pony Express opens
for business, pledging to 'deliver the goods in 10 days or less'.
Its first route carries mail between St. Joseph, Missouri and San
- The last Pony Express run is made as the telegraph takes over.
- Giovanni Caselli receives U.S. patent for a fax machine
called the 'pantelegraph' based on Alexander Bain's 1840 idea
of synchronized pendulums. Service between Paris and Lyons
France begins between 1865-1870, ending with the Franco-Prussian War.
- March 7th
- Alexander Graham Bell receives a patent on a device which
transmitted speech electronically. Three days later he spoke
the famous words 'Mr. Watson, come here, I want you' to his assistant
after spilling some acid in their workshop.
- The first commercial telephone is introduced and the first telephone line is installed
between Charlie William's electrical shop on Court Street, Boston and his home about
three miles away.
- Joseph John Thomson discovers electrons.
- John Ambrose Fleming patents the first practical electron tube
known as the 'Fleming Valve', based on Thomas Edison's patented
'Edison Effect'. In 1906 Lee DeForest creates the more advanced
three-element AUDION (what we now called a TRIODE.)
- January 25th
- Researchers complete the first transcontinental call from New York to San Francisco as
Alexander Graham Bell, in New York, speaks to Tom Watson in San Francisco, repeating
the first complete sentence transmitted by telephone... 'Mr. Watson - come here - I want you'.
- Karel Capek coins the term 'robot'.
- May 19th
- Bell System engineers demonstrate the first transmission of pictures over telephone wires.
- AT&T establishes commercial transatlantic telephone service to London using two-way radio.
Calls cost $75 for five minutes.
- July 1st
- The Communications Act of 1934 becomes law, it is the first effort to regulate the
telephone industry by the Federal Communications Commission instead of the Interstate Commerce Commission.
- John Vincent Atanasoff and Clifford Berry begin work on the
first electronic digital computer
at Iowa State University. The 700-pound desk-size system was finished in 1942.
- Hewlett-Packard is founded by Bill Hewlett and Dave
Packard, they decide the company's name with a coin toss.
- Vannevar Bush publishes
As We May Think
in The Atlantic Monthly. In it he proposes memex, a machine that
could store vast amounts of information. Users would have the
ability to create information trails which could be stored and
used for future reference.
- John Bardeen, William Shockley, and Walter Brattain invent the transistor
while at Bell Labs. They received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1956 for their work.
- The first commercially available computer
(The Ferranti Mark 1),
is delivered to Thomas Kilburn and Frederic Williams at Manchester University
in England. Nine more are sold between 1951 and 1957.
- October 16th
- The first high-level computer language (FORTRAN) is
by an IBM team lead by John W. Backus.
- October 29th
- The first hard disk drive is created at IBM by a team lead by Reynold B. Johnson. The '305 RAMAC' (Random Access Method of Accounting and Control) held 5MB of data on fifty 24 inch disks at a cost of about $10,000 per MB.
- October 4th
- USSR launches Sputnik, first artificial earth satellite.
- Bell System announces it's Data-Phone service which permits transmission of
data over regular telephone circuits.
- February 7th
- In response to the launch of Sputnik the US Department of Defense issues
directive 5105.15 establishing the Advanced Research Projects Agency
(ARPA). The directive tasks the agency
with 'direction or performance of such advanced projects in the field of
research and development...'.
- September 12th
- Jack Kilby
demonstrates the fist integrated circuit to fellow researchers and executives
at Texas Instruments.
- December 15th
- Arthur L. Schawlow and Charles H. Townes publish
Infrared and Optical Masers
describing what would later be known as the laser (Light Amplification by
Stimulated Emission of Radiation) while at Bell Labs. Earlier in the year
they also apply for a patent which is granted in 1960, the same year
Theodore Maiman builds the first working model while at the Hughes
Aircraft Company .
- The first communication satellite, Echo, was launched.
- Joseph Licklider publishes
- May 31
- While at MIT Leonard Kleinrock publishes the first paper on packet
switching networks Information
Flow in Large Communication Nets.
- ATT begins selling the first commercial modem (the Bell 103). The modem provided
full-duplex transmission, frequency-shift keying or FSK, and had a speed of 300 bits
per second or 300 bauds.
- Steve Russell finishes the first computer game
while at MIT,
inspired by E.E. Doc Smith's Lensman novels. Later that year he and Alan Kotok
would create the first joysticks. Other people involved were Peter Samson,
Wayne Wiitanen, Dan Edwards, Martin Graetz, Steve Piner, and Robert A Saunders.
- July 23
- The first live trans-Atlantic television broadcast is hosted by Walter Cronkite
and made via ATT's Telstar 1 satellite,
launched 13 days earlier on July 10.
- Full audio from the first broadcast.
- Audio story by Walter Cronkite (from NPR)
- Joseph Licklider and Wesley Clark publish 'On-Line Man-Computer Communication'
discussing their 'Galactic Network' concept that would allow people to access
data from any site connected through a vast network.
- Joseph Licklider becomes the first head of the computer research
program at ARPA.
- Doug Engelbart invents the 'X-Y Position Indicator for
a Display System', known today as the mouse.
- Digital Equipment Corporation releases its PDP-8 computer,
the first mass-produced minicomputer.
- RAND's Paul Baran publishes
Communications: Introduction to Distributed Communications Network
which outlines packet-switching networks. This paper did discuss
nuclear war, and is probably the source of the false
rumor that the Internet was built with the goal of withstanding a
- Ted Nelson coins the word 'hypertext'.
- Tom Van Vleck and Noel Morris create a Mail command for the Compatible Time-Sharing System at MIT.
- April 19
- Gordon Moore declares that computing power will double every 18 months,
a prophecy that holds true today and is known as
Moore and Robert Noyce would later leave Fairchild semiconductor
to start Intel in the summer
- Thomas Marill and Lawrence Roberts set up the first WAN (Wide Area
Network) between MIT's Lincoln Lab TX-2 and System Development
Corporation's Q-32 in California. Later they would write
Toward a Cooperative Network of Time-Shared Computers describing it.
- Scientists used fiber optics to carry telephone signals for the first time.
- Donald Davies coins the term 'packets' and 'packet switching'.
- ARPA's Bob Taylor receives funding for a networking experiment that would tie
together a number of Universities the agency was funding. With no formal requests
and in under an hour Charles Herzfeld agrees to fund what three years later
would become the ARPANET.
- Wesley Clark comes up with the idea of using dedicated hardware to perform
network functions while at a meeting of ARPA principal investigators. The devices
would eventually be called Interface Message Processors (IMP's), and today are
generally referred to as routers.
- The final standard for ASCII is published. (An earlier version that
included only upper-case letters was proposed by Bob Bemer in May 1961.)
- Lawrence Roberts publishes the first design paper on ARPANET entitled
Networks and Intercomputer Communication at ACM's Gatlinburg conference.
- The first WAN to use packet switching is tested at the National Research
Laboratory (NRL) in Great Britain.
- Joseph Licklider and Robert Taylor publish
The Computer as a Communications Device.
- Larry Roberts of ARPA releases a Request for Quotation (RFQ) looking for
bids to constructing a network of 4 IMPs, with possible growth to 19. Many
large companies like ATT and IBM do not submit bits, saying that such a
network was not possible.
- A small consulting company called Bolt Beranek and Newman (BBN)
located in Cambridge wins the ARPA IMP contract. The group, headed by Frank Heart, would
have $1 million and less than a year to turn theory into a working system.
- 'Sometime in March'
- Honeywell delivers the first IMP prototype (IMP 0) to BBN. The
unit was a modified version of Honeywell's rugged 516 computer. Unfortunately it didn't
work correctly, Ben Barker would spend several weeks rewiring it by hand into the correct
- April 7th
- Steve Crocker creates the first Request for Comment (RFC) document titled 'Host
It outlined the interface between hosts and BNN's IMP devices, each site would be responsible
for creating the host software that connected their computers to the ARPANET's IMPs.
The name RFC was chosen to avoid sounding too self-righteous, Crocker hoped to create
an environment in which everyone felt comfortable participating - a spirit which would
help the network to thrive in the coming decades.
- July 20th
- Apollo 11 lands on the Moon. Neil Armstrong becomes the first man on the Moon. Buzz
Aldrin becomes the second man. They spend 21.5 hours on the lunar surface, including
2.5 hours outside their lunar excursion module while millions watch from
- September 2nd
- 'The IMP Guys' from BNN finish installing the first ARPANET IMP
node (IMP1) at UCLA,
it is attached to the school's SDS Sigma-7 without a hitch.
- October 1st
- The ARPANET's second node is set up at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI),
connecting to their SDS 940.
- October 29th
- After a bit of tweaking the first connection is made from UCLA to the SRI machine
over the 50Kbps connecton. After typing "l" and "o" of the login command the SRI
system crashed. The two computers were finally successfully linked up on November 21st.
- November 1st
- IMP number three is installed at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
- The fourth node is installed at the University of Utah.
- Norman Abrahamson of the University of Hawaii develops ALOHAnet with funding
from ARPA. It carried data at a lowly 4.8Kbps, but would lay the groundwork for
Ethernet several years later.
- The fifth ARPANET node is installed at BBN's headquarters.
- ARPANET hosts start using Network Control Protocol (NCP) created
by the Network Working Group (NWG) headed by Steve Crocker.
- The ARPANET now has 15 sites (23 total hosts): UCLA, SRI, UCSB, U of Utah, BBN,
MIT, RAND, SDC, Harvard, Lincoln Lab, Stanford, UIU(C), CWRU, CMU, NASA/Ames and
averages about 700,000 packets per day.
- Project Gutenberg is started by Michael
Hart. Its first text is the US Declaration of Independence.
- In a Honeywell Computer Journal editorial titled 'What's the Date?' Bob Bemer
publishes the first warning about the Y2K bug.
- June 23rd
- RFC 172
is released establishing the File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
- The first Terminal Interface Processor (TIP) is deployed on the ARPANET, which
enabled computer terminals to connect directly into the ARPANET for the first time.
- BBN's Ray Tomlinson creates the first software (SNGMSG and READMAIL) that allows email
to be sent between computers, email quickly becomes the network's most popular application.
- March 23nd
- ARPA's name is changed to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA),
and is established as a separate defense agency under the Office of the Secretary of Defense.
- April 3rd
- Jon Postel creates the 1st Telnet specification (RFC 318) entitled: 'Ad hoc
- Bob Kahn organizes a demonstration of ARPANET between 40 machines at the International
Conference on Computer Communications.
- The Inter-Networking Group (INWG) is created to develop standards for the
ARPANET. Vinton Cerf is named the chairman.
- First international connections to the ARPANET: University College of London in
England and the Royal Radar Establishment in Norway.
- ARPANET traffic grows to more than 3 million packets per day.
- Vinton Cerf sketches his gateway architecture on back of envelope while sitting
in a hotel lobby, building on Bob Kahn's ideas for an improved version of NCP.
- May 22nd
- Robert Metcalfe writes a 13 page description of what will become
as part of his Harvard PhD thesis. He and David Boggs would later create the first
ethernet network (running at 2.944 Mbps) between computers named Michelson and
Morley, scientists who proved ether didn't exist in the 19th century. Metcalfe
would later start 3Com Corporation in June 1979.
- October 15th-17th
- Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie presented their first paper on UNIX at the
Symposium on Operating Systems Principles at Purdue University.
- Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn publish 'A Protocol for Packet Network Internetworking',
which established the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). This is also the first
time the term Internet was used.
- The ARPANET has 62 computers attached to it.
- Raphael Finkel first releases the Jargon
File while at Stanford.
- The ARPANET was transferred by DARPA to the Defense Communications Agency (now
the Defense Information Systems Agency) as an operational network.
- In RFC 706 -
On the Junk Mail Problem Jon Postel notes that the design of most mail systems
made it difficult to block junk mail, forsight the would prove correct
when spam begans to fill user's mail boxes twenty years later.
- UUCP (Unix-to-Unix CoPy) developed at AT&T Bell Labs. It is distributed with
UNIX one year later.
- Leonard Kleinrock publishes the first book about ARPANET technologies: 'Queueing
Systems Volume II - Computer Applications' which helped packet switching gain
- The CCITT (now the ITU) defines the X.25 protocol for public packet switched
- Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale use e-mail every day during their
campaign to coordinate intineraries. A Single message costs $4.
- Queen Elizabeth II of England becomes the first head of state to send an e-mail message.
- January 3rd
- Apple Computer was incorporated in
the state of California by Steve Jobs and Steve
- The ARPANET has 111 computers attached to it.
- The first Cray-1 computer is shipped to Los Alamos National Laboratory.
The computer was designed by Seymour Cray and had 8 megabytes of memory,
a peak speed of 160 megaflops, and a price tag of $8.8 million.
- Dennis C. Hayes sells his first modem products to computer hobbyists.
He goes on to create the Hayes Standard AT command set in June 1981, which
becomes the de facto standard for modem interfaces.
- Vint Cerf, Bob Kahn and others demonstrate the first gateway system
connecting packet radio and the ARPANET.
- The Aspen Movie Map is shown at MIT, it is the first hypermedia videodisc.
- Vint Cerf, Steve Crocker, and Danny Cohen create a plan to separate TCP's routing
functions into a separate protocol called the Internet Protocol (IP), error handling
and datagram functions would remain a part of TCP.
- The University of California at Berkeley releases Berkeley Software
Distribution (BSD) UNIX based on version 7 of ATT's UNIX.
- May 3rd
- The first unsolicited email message is sent to 400 people across the
ARPAnet by Gary Thuerk inviting west coast users to a demonstration of Digital
Equipment Corporation's new Decsystem-20 computer.
- DARPA establishes the Internet Configuration Control Board (ICCB) to help the
process of creating the gateways between hosts and the network.
- The first MUD is created by Richard Bartle and Roy Trubshaw at the University
- USENET is created by Tom Truscott, Steve Bellovin, and Jim Ellis using UUCP
between Duke and UNC.
- While at UC Berkeley Eric Allman writes Delivermail, which will evolve
into Sendmail during the early 1980s.
- April 12th
- Kevin MacKenzie sends the first ever emoticon in a message to the MsgGroup.
The first is -) meaning tongue-in-cheek.
- October 27th
- The ARPAnet stops functioning for several hours when the routing
processes in all of the IMPs crash after one of them corrupts the
network's routing tables.
- Ted Nelson conceptualizes 'Xanadu', a central, pay-per-document hypertext database
encompassing all written information.
- BITNET is created by Ira Fuchs and Greydon Freeman. The "Because It's Time NETwork" Started
as a cooperative network at the City University of New York, with the first outside
connection being to Yale.
- August 12th
- IBM releases its IBM Personal Computer. It retailed for between $1500 and $4500 and sold more than 65,000 in the first 4 months.
- September 1st
- RFC 791
which defines Internetwork Protocol version 4 (IPv4) is released.
- The number of hosts breaks 200.
- The Defense Data Network is created (soon to become the Milnet).
- A military directive is issued by Richard DeLauer, the United State Under Secretary
of Defense. It establishes the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and Internet
Protocol (IP), as the protocol suite for ARPANET (and all military networks).
The cutover date is set for January 1st 1983.
- The first PC LAN is demonstrated at the National Computer Conference by Drew Major,
Kyle Powell, and Dale Neibaur. Their software would eventually become Novell's Netware.
- Eric Rosen finishes the External Gateway Protocol
(RFC 827) specification.
- September 19th
- Scott E Fahlman proposes the ubiquitous Smiley
:-) to indicate
humor in message board posts.
- The number of hosts breaks 500.
- The Internet becomes reality when the ARPANET is split into Military and Civilian sections.
- UC Berkeley releases BSD Unix version 4.2c, which included TCP/IP.
- Internet Activities Board (IAB) established, replacing the Internet Configuration
Control Board (ICCB). Dave Clark continues to act as the chairman and a number of task forces
were created to handle specific technological issues including the Internet Engineering
Task Force (IETF).
- January 1st
- The entire ARPANET switches from NCP to IP. The transition is said to have went
smoothly, although buttons were distributed saying 'I survived the TCP/IP transition.'
Jon Postel documented the plan in RFC801,
Dan Lynch of USC ISI handled much of the logistics (and went on to start Interop
in 1988), and UCLA student David Smallberg documented the transition in 15 RFCs
in the range of RFC 842 - RFC 876.
- June 23rd
- Jon Postel and Paul Mockapetris of the University of Southern California
run the first successful test of their automated domain name system,
which allowed users to use human-readable names for machines instead of
needing to use the machine's physical address.
- Paul Mockapetris publishes RFCs
which outline the Domain Name Service. Paul's first implementation of
a DNS server was called JEEVES. Kevin Dunlap and later Paul Vixie would
soon write BIND, which is by far the most common implementation
- Mike Muuss writes Ping
while at the US Army Ballistics Research Laboratory.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 1000.
- William Gibson coins the term 'cyberspace' in the novel 'Neuromancer'.
- The Modified Final Judgement provides consumers with more choices for long
distance services by 'breaking up' ATT.
- JANET is created to serve higher-education in Britian.
- FidoNet is developed by Tom
Jennings, with the node 2 belonging to John Madill.
- January 5th
- Richard Stallman starts the GNU Project,
and would later start the Free Software Foundation.
- April 1st
- Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link(WELL) is started by
Larry Brilliant of Networking Technologies International and Stewart Brand of the
Point Foundation, with Matthew McClure as director. Customers are
charged $8 per month plus $2 per hour.
- Quantum Computer Services is founded, in November its first online service Q-Link,
launches on Commodore Business Machines. The company would become American Online
in October 1991.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 5000.
- BSD Unix 4.3 is released.
- The Cleveland Freenet comes on-line.
- Mail Exchanger (MX) records are described by Craig Partridge
joining mail records and DNS.
- RFC 977
is released by Brian Kantor and Phil Lapsley. It describes Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP),
which was created in an effort to make Usenet news faster and more efficient.
- The National Science Foundation establishes 5 super-computing centers
to provide high-computing power for all (JVNC at Princeton, PSC at Pittsburgh, SDSC at UCSD, NCSA at UIUC,
Theory Center at Cornell). The NSFNET is
created to connect the sites with a backbone speed of 56Kbps.
- Dan Lynch organizes the first TCP/IP Implementor's Workshop (which would become Interop
in a few years), and holds it in Monterey.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 10,000.
- The NSF signs an agreement to manage the NSFNET backbone with Merit Network, Inc.
- Apple Computer introduces HyperCard, the first widely
available personal hypermedia authoring system.
- Jeff Case, Mark Fedor, Martin Schoffstall, and James Davin show off their Simple
Gateway Monitoring Protocol (SGMP). Amazingly a major Internet outage occurred during
the presentation, showing just how badly the system was needed. Their protocol would later
evolve into SNMP.
- August 1st
- The 1000th
RFC 'Request for Comments Reference Guide' is published.
- December 9th
- The Christmas Virus finds its way onto BITNET, causing many mail servers
to crash because of the overload. Eventually much of the network is shutdown
for a time to stop its spread.
- December 18th
- Larry Wall releases the first version of his Practical Extraction And Reporting Language, Pearl.
(it's name would soon be shortened to simply Perl)
- The first transatlantic fiber-optic cable linking North America and Europe is completed,
it can handle 40,000 telephone calls simultaneously.
- Van Jacobson writes traceroute while at Lawrence Berkeley National
Labs after a conversation with Steve Deering of Stanford University.
- Bernard Daines creates the first Ethernet switch to add Ethernet
support to Northern Telecom carrier-class telephone switches.
- The NSFNET backbone is upgraded to DS-1 (1.544Mbps) links, it handles more than75 million packets a day.
- Internet Relay Chat (IRC)is written by Jarkko Oikarinen at the University of Oulu, Finland.
- November 2nd
- The Internet Worm
is released by Robert Morris Jr., affecting about 6,000 of the 60,000 hosts on the
Internet. CERT(Computer Emergency Response Team) is
later formed by DARPA in response to concerns raised by the Worm.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 100,000.
- The IAB consolidates its growing list of task forces into two
groups, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the Internet
Research Task Force (IRTF). The IETF (one of the original 10 Task
Forces) was given near-term responsibility for developments and
standards while the smaller IRTF focused on longer-range research.
Steering, Working, and Research groups are all formed under the
IETF and IRTF.
- The first gateways between private electronic mail carriers and the Internet are established.
Compuserve is connected through Ohio State University and MCI is connected through the
Corporation for National Research Initiative.
- The Cuckoo's Egg is written by Clifford Stoll. The book tells the real-life tale of
a German cracker group who infiltrated numerous US facilities, and how Cliff traced and caught
him after finding a 75 cent accounting error.
- First Web Project proposal is
distributed by CERN's Tim Berners-Lee. His proposal was for a 'hypertext system'
to aid the sharing of information between teams of researchers in the High Energy Physics community.
- The first specification for Point to Point Protocol (PPP) is released in
Today almost all dial-up Internet users use PPP to connect.
- November 13th
- The 'Make Money Fast' pyramid scheme is posted to UseNet for the
making Dave Rhodes infamous.
- Archie is released by Peter Deutsch, Alan Emtage, and Bill Heelan at McGill.
- The Internet Toaster is created
by Simon Hackett and John Romkey makes appearances at Interop.
- Patrick Naughton sends an angry resignation letter to the CEO
of Sun Microsystems detailing the woeful state of the company's
operating systems. The company commissions Naughton, Bill Joy,
James Gosling, and three others to create a solution to the problem.
They would create a simple object-oriented programming language
named Oak, which would evolve into Java a few years later.
- The ARPANET ceases to exist.
- July 10th
- The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is
Mitchell Kapor and
John Perry Barlow.
- The first World-Wide Web software is created by Tim Berners-Lee.
- Peter Scott introduces hytelnet.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 600,000.
- The NSFNET backbone is upgraded to DS-3 (44.736Mbps) as traffic passes 1 trillion bytes
and 10 billion packets per month.
- Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS)is invented by
- Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) is released by Philip Zimmerman.
- The Trojan Room Coffee Machine makes its debut,
several years later it will become one of the first webcams.
- Line mode browser (www) released to limited audience on priam vax,rs6000, and sun v4.
- The National Science Foundation changes the acceptable
use policy for the NSFNET backbone to allow commercial traffic.
- June 12th
- CERN has a computer seminar on WWW.
- August 6th
- Line mode browser (www) is announced
on alt.hypertext. Later that month it is released on comp.sys.next, comp.text.sgml, and comp.mail.multi-media.
- September 10th
The Line Mode Browser v1.1 (www) is made available by anonymous FTP.
Line mode v 1.2 announced on alt.hypertext, comp.infosystems,comp.mail.multi-media,
cern.sting, comp.archives.admin, and several mailing lists.
- The Internet Society (ISOC) is chartered.
- The Internet Activities Board name is changed to the Internet Architecture Board as it
starts operating as a part of the Internet Society.
The first IAB IPv6 draft is withdrawn during an IETF meeting.
The Internet Hunt contest is started by Rick Gates.
a gopherspace search tool, is released by the University of Nevada.
- While writing a paper on Internet use Jean Armour Polly coins the term 'Surfing the Net' after looking at a surfer on her mouse pad.
- The Internet Activities Board (IAB) meets and decides to build a
new version of IP out of CLNP.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 2 million.
- ISO 10646 - Universal Multiple-Octet Coded Character Set is released.
- The White House and United Nations come on-line.
- Robert Hayden creates the first version of The Geek Code.
DARPA is redesignated as the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) in
President Clinton's strategy paper, 'Technology for America's Economic Growth,
A New Direction to Build Economic Strength'.
- WinSock 1.1 is released. WinSock standardized APIs used to create Windows-based
TCPIP applications. It was started by Geoff Arnold and Martin Hall during Interop in 1991.
- NCSA releases the first
version of Marc Andreessen's 'Mosaic for X'.
- There are about 50 HTTP servers.
International Workshop on Hypermedia and Hypertext Standards is held in Amsterdam.
- WWW (Port 80 HTTP) traffic measures 0.1% of NSF backbone traffic.
- WWW presented at Online Publishing 93 in Pittsburgh.
Gleason Sackmann begins using the
listserv to distribute announcements about the latest Internet resources.
Peter Steiner's famous 'On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog.'
on page 61 of The New Yorker
(Vol.69 (LXIX) no. 20)
AugustThe first World-Wide Web developers' conference is held in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- The NSF awards Network Solutions the InterNIC contract
worth $5.9 million a year until March 31, 1998 when the contract expires. They begin registering
domains at the rate of almost 400 per month.
There are over 500 known HTTP servers.
- NCSA Mosaic is released for Macintosh and Windows.
- Web (http - tcp port 80) traffic takes 1% of NSF backbone bandwidth.
- Marc Andressen leaves the NCSA to work for a small software company. He soon forms
a partnership with SGI founder Jim Clark that will become Netscape Communications Corp.
- FreeBSD 1.0 is released.
Marc Andressen and Jim Clark form Mosaic Communications Corp. (now Netscape Communications).
Arizona lawyers Laurence Canter and Martha Siegel 'spam' 6000 usenet groups with
advertising green card lottery services, many Internet users fight back.
The first international WWW conference is held at CERN in Geneva. It is heavily
oversubscribed and known as the 'Woodstock of the Web'.
- The web grows at a 341,634% annual growth, Gopher grows at 997%.
- The NSFNET backbone is upgraded to OC-3 (155mbps) links as traffic passes 10 trillion bytes per month.
- The first cyberbank, 'First Virtual', opens.
The International WWW Conference Committee (IW3C2)is
created by CERN and the NCSA.
The Internet/ARPANET celebrates its 25th anniversary.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 3 million.
- The final specifications for IPv6 are released by IAB, they recommend 128 bit addresses,
enough to number 1 quadrillion computers connected through 1 trillion networks.
Mosaic Communications Corporation (now called Netscape Communications)
the first version of it's Netscape web browser (version 0.9 Beta).
VRML 1.0 Draft is released by Gavin Bell, Tony Parisi, and Mark Pesce.
- Network Solutions Inc. reports that it is registering domain names at the rate of 2,000 per month.
- The second international WWW Conference is held in Chicago and is called 'Mosaic and the Web'.
The first meeting of the World-Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is held in Cambridge. W3C had
been created by Tim Berners-Lee and Al Vezza.
CERN gets funding for the Large Hadron Collider and decides to discontinue WWW development
enorder to refocus on particle physics. CERN hands projects over to INRIA.
- National Science Foundation advisory committee recommends moving to a user-fee system
for registering domain names as soon as possible.
The number of Internet hosts breaks 4 million.March
- The first macro virus is found in a Microsoft Word Document.
The National Science Foundation stops funding the NSFNET backbone and establishes the
very high speed Backbone Network Service(vBNS) to serve the
- HTTP (web) packets pass FTP traffic to be largest volume Internet protocol.
- The Apache web server project is started.
The NSF and NSI announce that domain registration will no longer be free of charge effective
immediately. According to the plan new registrants will pay a $100 fee for a two-year
registration; and thereafter will pay $50 per year. Organizations registered prior to
September 14, 1995 will be charged the $50 annual fee on the anniversary of their initial
registration. EDU domains are still paid for by the NSF.
RFC 1883 - 'Internet Protocol, Version 6 (IPv6) Specification is
released, detailing how IPv6 should work.
- Sun Microsystems introduces its HotJava Web browser and
the Java programming language, created five years
earlier by Jim Gosling.
- Scientific Applications International Corp. (SAIC) of San Diego acquires Network
Solutions Inc. as a wholly owned subsidiary.
- The Telecommunications Reform Act is passed, opening local and long distance markets to full
competition. The act also included a provision called the Communications Decency Act (CDA),
which would be declared unconstitutional because of its vague wording in 1997.
- In response to the CDA the EFF launches its
famous Blue Ribbon Campaign.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 9 million.
- Larry Page and Sergey Brin begin work on a search engine called BackRub,
named for its unique ability to analyze the 'back links' pointing to a
given website. The search engine was soon renamed 'Google', and
Google Inc. opened its doors on
September 7, 1998.
- February 10th
- United Stated Public Law 104-106 directs ARPA to change its name
to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
- MCI upgrades its Internet backbone to 622Mbps.
- June 12th
- The Communications Decency Act (part of the 1996 Telecommunications Reform Act) is
declared unconstitutional .
- June 24th
- After repeated threats via email and snail mail Network Solutions drops
9272 domain names from its DNS tables for failure to pay their domain name fees.
- The number of Internet hosts breaks 16 million.
2000th RFC titled 'Internet Official Protocol Standards' is released.
- March 6th
- The Bonny View Cottage Furniture company registers the one millionth
Internet domain name (bonnyview.com) at 12:07:51 pm.
- July 17th
- Human error at Network Solutions causes DNS tables for .net and .com to become corrupted leaving most domain names unreachable
while clean databases are distributed.
- December 22nd
- The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN)
- January 30th
- The US Commerce Department releases its Green Paper
proposal, intended to clarify how the domain name registration system should be handled.
- January 22nd
- Netscape Communications Corporation announces plans to make the source
code for Netscape Communicator client software available for free licensing
on the Internet.
- February 6th
- The International Telecommunication Union
that technical standards have been agreed upon for the V.90 protocol used in 56K modems.
- May 4th
- The two millionth domain name (voyagerstravel.com) is registered.
- June 29th
- The Gigabit Ethernet Alliance announces that the IEEE has ratified 802.3z as the
Gigabit Ethernet standard.
- October 26th
- The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)
if formed and establishes it's initial board of directors.
- November 6th
- The three millionth domain name (lizzybee.com) is registered.
- November 24th
- America Online, Inc. announces that it would acquire Netscape
Communications Corporation in a stock transaction valued at $4.2 billion.
- Online retailers rack up 5.3 billion in sales.
- March 9th
- The four millionth domain name (riedelglass.com) is registered.
- March 26th
- The Melissa macro virus quickly spreads across the network by infecting Microsoft Word documents.
- May 29th
- The five millionth domain name (believeinkids.com) is registered.
- ISOC approves the formation of the Internet Societal Task Force (ISTF),
Vint Cerf serves as first chair. The organization was originally proposed
by Sascha Ignjatovic to address societal issues and concerns relating
to the Internet.
- October 1st
- The original Cleveland Freenet closes.
- 304 million people have internet access.
- The ten millionth domain name is registered.
- November 16th
- ICANN selects seven new top level domain names: .aero, .biz, .coop, .info, .museum, .name, .pro
- Links, references, and suggested reading:
- Books and other references:
- Where Wizards Stay Up Late
by Katie Hafner and Matthew Lyon - ISBN 0-684-81201-0
- IPv6 - The New Internet Protocol by Christian Huitema - ISBN 0-13-850505-5
- Nerds 2.0.1 by Stephen Segaller - ISBN 1-57500-106-3
- The Cuckoo's Egg by Clifford Stoll - ISBN 0671726889
- A Thread Across the Ocean: The Heroic Story of the Transatlantic Cable by John Steele Gordon - ISBN: 0060524464
- Community Memory a discussion list about the history of cyberspace
- Data Communications Magazine 25th Anniversary Issue, October 21st, 1997.
- Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution by Steven Levy - ISBN 0-385-19195-2
- The Ring of Truth by Philip and Phylis Morrison - ISBN 0-394-55663-1
- Sidereus Nuncius or The Sidereal Messenger by Galileo Galilei (translated by Albert Van Helden) - ISBN 0-226-27903-0
- DNS and BIND by Paul Albitz and Cricket Liu - ISBN 1-56592-010-4
- Network World magazine, May 18st, 1998.
- Stopping Spam by Alan Schwartz and Simon Garfinkel - ISBN 1-56592-388-X
- Sendmail by Bryan Costales and Eric Allman - ISBN 1-56592-222-0
- Internet Chronology by Lawrence G. Roberts
- The Birth of the Internet by Leonard Kleinrock
- A Brief History of the Internet from the Internet Society.
- Hobbes' Internet Timeline by Robert Zakon
- The Role of Government in the Evolution of the Internet by Robert Kahn
- The World Wide Web Consortium
- Request for Comments Documents (RFC's)
- RFC1462 - What is the Internet?
- RFC1958 - Architectural Principles of the Internet
- RFC2555 - 30 Years of RFCs
- A Little History of the World Wide Web
- Java: Cornerstone of the Global Network Enterprise?
- Schawlow and Townes Invent the Laser
- Telecom History Time Line
- The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)
- Founding Father (Paul Baran) Wired magazine - March 2001
- Google's 20 Year Usenet Archive
- The First Smiley :-) - NPR report