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Who Invented the Internet

Posted On 2008-01-03 by FortyPoundHead
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Despite popular opinion, Al Gore was not the inventor of the Internet. In actuality though, the Internet was invented in the United States during the late 1950s to the 1970s by a group of researchers and scientists at the newly formed Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) after the former Soviet Union launched Sputnik. Realizing that the United States had suffered a great technological blow by allowing the USSR to hold the first successful satellite launch, ARPA set out to create a brand new technology unlike anything that had ever been done before; and the Internet was the result of their hard work.

Although there were many people working for ARPA on the Internet project, there are five individuals who can really be credited with actually creating the Internet. Among them was J. C. R. Licklider, the head of the Information Processing Technology Office at ARPA. In his position, he thought up the idea of the Internet itself as a way of potentially unifying humans from around the United States (and the world) through a universal network.

Because Licklider''s previous experience was not in actual computer programming, however, he had to recruit others in order to help create the Internet for ARPA. The obvious choice was Lawrence Roberts. Roberts went on to lead the team which would eventually develop ARPANET (the early precursor to the Internet) in 1967. He was the scientist to finally utilize the proposed method of packet switching first created by Leonard Kleinrock. The Internet still uses packet switching as its primary way of transferring data.

After several years of work, a computer at the University of California, Los Angeles, became the first computer to connect to the Internet. In time, three more computers would be connected to the Internet in 1969, leading to the start of the Internet revolution.

Despite the massive success that Lawrence Roberts had received while working at ARPA, he promptly quit his position in 1973 in order to form the world''s first commercial network, known at that time as Telenet. However, in his place, he assigned Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf to continue working on the Internet at ARPA. Together, Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf worked to modify the original method of packet switching pioneered by Roberts and Kleinrock and eventually created what is now known as the TCP/IP protocols. It was at this point when ARPANET was finally changed to the more easily pronounced Internet.


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