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Internet origins

By sgkester ·
I just downloaded Dr D C Misra's 20 questions about the internet and was surprised at his view that it all started at CERN in 1989. A better view was offered by john@genart.se that it started from ARPANET in the 60's when dial-up hackers began to use the military net for their own research.

I'd like to add that from my own knowledge that various networks were well-connected by 1977 when I, as a corporate account, could tap into DIALOG at USC to assess patent infringement of proposed test hardware systems. An example: one vendor proposed in 1976 to develop an air-blown dirt handling system to uncover and recover proposed horizontal missile shelters so that satellites could inspect whether the shelters contained missiles. The proposal envisioned that the dirt replaced by the blower would achieve 95% Proctor density, sufficient for the specified blast protection of the shelter. DIALOG helped me milk numerous databases, and I discovered that another vendor had a ring of patents for the air blower system. I also found that pea gravel dumped from a truck can achieve 95% Proctor density, and had been used in WW II to repair bomb damage to airfield runways.

Only two years later I was recruited by the US Government NIA for a project to encourage the development of a much broader research sharing network for all US Government research contractors. The idea was that the Government would not have to pay X number of times for the same research, just so all affected researchers would be in the loop.

The differences between ARPANET, DIALOG, NIA, and the internet involve hardware improvements, number of users, and permissivity of use. The progress was steady and I'd say inevitable. Al Gore and Bill Gates were both newcomers to this process.

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1970s Data Networks

by Mikebanks In reply to Internet origins

It is astounding to see someone state that the Internet "began" in 1994. (Particularly so if you've spoken with some of the people responsible for ARPAnet.)

Historical footnote: Tymnet (a circuit-switched system) was made available commercially in 1972. The first commercial packet-switching network was Telenet, backed by BBN and developed by Larry Roberts as a means of commercializing packet-switching technology. It went live in 1975 (a year after the term "information superhighway" was seen in print for the first time).
--Mike On the Way to the Web

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