When the Internet was originally conceived more than half a century ago, it started out as a type of information transport system based around military and government applications. However, today, it has evolved into a piece of everyday life in the developed world, not only transporting information, but also entertainment. The Internet has changed rapidly in a very small amount of time.
The original implementation of the Internet was based around transporting information quickly across the world during times of war. Begun by DARPA, or the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the U.S. government needed a faster solution than telegraph or telephone to move large pieces of data from military base to military base. As more bases began to implement advanced computers and electronic information, the network began to expand across the country. With the explosive growth of personal computers in the decades following, end user consumers would receive the same type of technology that the military was using, only without the same connectivity.
Soon, more companies appeared with a hand in the Internet business. ISP’s, largely evolving from cable companies, offered consumers dial-up connections for their personal computers. Computer and software manufacturers, such as Microsoft and Apple, started to look at the Internet business much closer, with an added emphasis on providing ease of use. Soon, most computers had the ability to “surf the ‘net” and different forms of communication appeared. E-mail allowed people to send letters without the hassle and expense of the postal service. Websites allowed people to display a piece of their personality or interests.
Soon, companies in the so called Dot Com Bubble appeared, providing Internet services that would still exist today. Companies such as Google and Facebook capitalized on people’s growing need to become connected and share information over the Internet. Today, the Internet houses many different entertainment, communication, and information services. People can use blog-style sites to laugh at Internet cats or odd Walmart People. They can use calling services like Skype to keep in touch with family and friends, and they can look up topics on Wikipedia. The Internet has truly come a long way from its inception half a century ago.