The Growing Need for the Internet

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The Growing Need for the Internet Anyone alive today has surely heard of the Internet. Kids growing up today have been in contact with it since they started school, and adults are now becoming Internet junkies. The Internet is continuously changing, growing, and improving. It is now an information and communication tool you cannot afford to ignore. This paper will help you understand why you should know about it. The Internet is a loose amalgam of thousands of computer networks reaching millions of people all over the world (LaQuey. 1994. p.82). Although its original purpose was to provide researchers with access to expensive resources, the Internet has shown the speed and effectiveness in communications that it has surpassed its original purpose. Today the Internet is being used by nearly everyone for a variety of purposes, from communicating with one another to accessing services and resources. You can hardly pick up a newspaper or magazine without reading about how the Internet is playing a part in someone's life. THE BEGINNING The Internet was created in 1969 with the birth of ARPANET, an experimental project of the U.S. Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (LaQuey. 1994. p. 93). Its design was to explore experimental technologies that would link researchers with remote resources like large computer systems and databases. The success of ARPANET helped create many other networking inventions. These have grown into an ever expanding, complex system comprising tens of millions of people and tens of thousands of networks (Hudson. 1997. p. 297). The Internet does not just connect you and another computer, it connects you and all other Internet connected computers. It allows people in different countries to communicate without ever seeing each other, and information is available twenty-four hours a day from thousands of places. SUCCESS OF THE INTERNET It is hard to imagine how the Internet has grown so fast and been so successful without some individual or organization managing the project. Yet no one has a monopoly on access to or use of the Internet. One of the reasons the Internet is so successful is the commitment of its developers to producing "open" standards. The specifications that computers need to communicate are publicly and freely available, published so that everyone can obtain them. The Internet does not have a powerful supercomputer controlling its operation by feeding it commands. Rather, all the networks and computers act together in the exchange of information and communication.

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