Computers With The Internet

Written by Sarah Provost
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These days, virtually every computer comes equipped with a modem to access the Internet. In fact, so do many cell phones, PDAs and CP3 players. The Internet is everywhere, allowing us immediate access to information and entertainment. It seems almost unbelievable that the Internet as we know it has only been around for a little more than a decade.

Beginnings of the Internet

The very first computer network was the ARPANET, a site created by a division of the Department of Defense. This original network, however, used a different protocol than the one currently in use, changing over only in 1983. In 1986, the National Science Foundation created their version of an internet. It wasn't until the development of the World Wide Web in the early 1990s, however, that the general public began to have access to these resources.

Though there are still a number of independent and proprietary internets, World Wide Web has become the Internet, the general point of reference. Since 1993, the World Wide Web has been freely available to everyone. Every document on the Web is held to the same standards, making it possible to access it from many different devices.

The first of these three standards is the Uniform Resource Locator, or URL. This ensures that each page has a unique "address" so that it may easily be found and referenced. The second standard is Hyper Text Transfer Protocol, or HTTP, which defines how the browser and server communicate. Finally, Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML) defines how the information is to be encoded. These standards are what make the Internet available to all.


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