The Origins of the Internet
This information is not vital to your understanding and use of the Web, so it is 'safe' to skip on to the next topic, but it is useful background information.
The Internet was formed in the early 60's by a military supply company,
called the Rand Corporation, as a means to connect Government
institutions in the event of a nuclear holocaust. In the early 80's
the US military developed a new, more efficient network and turned
what was then known as "ARPA Internet" over to the universities
connected to the system. This then rapidly grew and by the late
80's, hundreds of universities all over the world were connected to
the Internet. However, it was only at the beginning of the 1990's
that the Internet gained any public attention.
It was with the advent of the World Wide Web (these days just known as the Web) that the Internet really captured the public imagination. This developed from the National Centre for Supercomputer Applications (NCSA) and CERN . At both these areas institutions, there were attempts to improve the means of passing files over networks - including the Internet. The first attempt at this was called the File Transfer Protocol (FTP). This was then refined and now FTP is the basis for transferring files that use the HyperText Markup Language (HTML). All web pages that we see on the 'Net use HTML to show the impressive graphical capibilities that we now take for granted. HTML is less of a programming language and more of a 'code' that can tell software what to display. 'Tags' in normal text are embedded into a normal text file that a Web Browser can interpret. For example, the <B> tag will make text that comes after it into bold, and this is turned off by using the </B> tag. The first Web Browser was called Mosaic and was developed by NCSA. Of course, now, the major web players are Netscape and Microsoft
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