Internet 770x455


By AronT
  • 1965

    Two computers at MIT Lincoln Lab communicate with one another using packet-switching technology
  • Period: to


  • 1968

    Beranek and Newman, Inc. (BBN) unveils the final version of the Interface Message Processor (IMP) specifications. BBN wins ARPANET contract.
  • 1969

    On Oct. 29, UCLA’s Network Measurement Center, Stanford Research Institute (SRI), University of California-Santa Barbara and University of Utah install nodes. The first message is "LO," which was an attempt by student Charles Kline to "LOGIN" to the SRI computer from the university. However, the message was unable to be completed because the SRI system crashed.
  • 1972

    BBN’s Ray Tomlinson introduces network email. The Internetworking Working Group (INWG) forms to address need for establishing standard protocols.
  • 1973

    Global networking becomes a reality as the University College of London (England) and Royal Radar Establishment (Norway) connect to ARPANET. The term Internet is born.
  • 1974

    The first Internet Service Provider (ISP) is born with the introduction of a commercial version of ARPANET, known as Telenet.
  • 1974

    Vinton Cerf and Bob Kahn (the duo said by many to be the Fathers of the Internet) publish "A Protocol for Packet Network Interconnection," which details the design of TCP
  • 1976

    Queen Elizabeth II hits the “send button” on her first email.
  • 1979

    USENET forms to host news and discussion groups
  • 1981

    The National Science Foundation (NSF) provided a grant to establish the Computer Science Network (CSNET) to provide networking services to university computer scientists.
  • 1982

    Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and Internet Protocol (IP), as the protocol suite, commonly known as TCP/IP, emerge as the protocol for ARPANET. This results in the fledgling definition of the Internet as connected TCP/IP internets. TCP/IP remains the standard protocol for the Internet.
  • 1983

    The Domain Name System (DNS) establishes the familiar .edu, .gov, .com, .mil, .org, .net, and .int system for naming websites. This is easier to remember than the previous designation for websites, such as 123.456.789.10.
  • 1984

    William Gibson, author of "Neuromancer," is the first to use the term "cyberspace."
  • 1985, the website for Symbolics Computer Corp. in Massachusetts, becomes the first registered domain.
  • 1986

    The National Science Foundation’s NSFNET goes online to connected supercomputer centers at 56,000 bits per second — the speed of a typical dial-up computer modem. Over time the network speeds up and regional research and education networks, supported in part by NSF, are connected to the NSFNET backbone — effectively expanding the Internet throughout the United States. The NSFNET was essentially a network of networks that connected academic users along with the ARPANET.
  • 1987

    The number of hosts on the Internet exceeds 20,000. Cisco ships its first router.
  • 1989 becomes the first commercial provider of dial-up access to the Internet.
  • 1990

    Tim Berners-Lee, a scientist at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, develops HyperText Markup Language (HTML). This technology continues to have a large impact on how we navigate and view the Internet today
  • 1991

    CERN introduces the World Wide Web to the public
  • 1992

    The first audio and video are distributed over the Internet. The phrase "surfing the Internet" is popularized.
  • 1993

    The number of websites reaches 600 and the White House and United Nations go online. Marc Andreesen develops the Mosaic Web browser at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. The number of computers connected to NSFNET grows from 2,000 in 1985 to more than 2 million in 1993. The National Science Foundation leads an effort to outline a new Internet architecture that would support the burgeoning commercial use of the network.
  • 1994

    Netscape Communications is born. Microsoft creates a Web browser for Windows 95.
  • 1994

    Yahoo! is created by Jerry Yang and David Filo, two electrical engineering graduate students at Stanford University. The site was originally called "Jerry and David's Guide to the World Wide Web." The company was later incorporated in March 1995.
  • 1995

    Compuserve, America Online and Prodigy begin to provide Internet access., Craigslist and eBay go live. The original NSFNET backbone is decommissioned as the Internet’s transformation to a commercial enterprise is largely completed.
  • 1995

    The first online dating site,, launches.
  • 1996

    A 3D animation dubbed "The Dancing Baby" becomes one of the first viral videos.
  • 1996

    The browser war, primarily between the two major players Microsoft and Netscape, heats up. CNET buys for $15,000.
  • 1997

    Netflix is founded by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph as a company that sends users DVDs by mail.
  • 1997

    PC makers can remove or hide Microsoft’s Internet software on new versions of Windows 95, thanks to a settlement with the Justice Department. Netscape announces that its browser will be free.
  • 1998

    The Google search engine is born, changing the way users engage with the Internet.
  • 1998

    The Internet Protocol version 6 introduced, to allow for future growth of Internet Addresses. The current most widely used protocol is version 4. IPv4 uses 32-bit addresses allowing for 4.3 billion unique addresses; IPv6, with 128-bit addresses, will allow 3.4 x 1038 unique addresses, or 340 trillion trillion trillion.
  • 1999

    AOL buys Netscape. Peer-to-peer file sharing becomes a reality as Napster arrives on the Internet, much to the displeasure of the music industry.
  • 2000

    The dot-com bubble bursts. Web sites such as Yahoo! and eBay are hit by a large-scale denial of service attack, highlighting the vulnerability of the Internet. AOL merges with Time Warner
  • 2001

    A federal judge shuts down Napster, ruling that it must find a way to stop users from sharing copyrighted material before it can go back online.
  • 2003

    The SQL Slammer worm spread worldwide in just 10 minutes. Myspace, Skype and the Safari Web browser debut.
  • 2003

    The blog publishing platform WordPress is launched.
  • 2004

    Facebook goes online and the era of social networking begins. Mozilla unveils the Mozilla Firefox browser.
  • 2005 launches. The social news site Reddit is also founded.
  • 2006

    AOL changes its business model, offering most services for free and relying on advertising to generate revenue. The Internet Governance Forum meets for the first time.
  • 2006

    Twitter launches. The company's founder, Jack Dorsey, sends out the very first tweet: "just setting up my twttr."
  • 2009

    The Internet marks its 40th anniversary.
  • 2010

    Facebook reaches 400 million active users.
  • 2010

    The social media sites Pinterest and Instagram are launched.
  • 2011

    Twitter and Facebook play a large role in the Middle East revolts.
  • 2012

    President Barack Obama's administration announces its opposition to major parts of the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect Intellectual Property Act, which would have enacted broad new rules requiring internet service providers to police copyrighted content.
  • 2013

    Edward Snowden, a former CIA employee and National Security Agency (NSA) contractor, reveals that the NSA had in place a monitoring program capable of tapping the communications of thousands of people, including U.S. citizens.
  • 2013

    Fifty-one percent of U.S. adults report that they bank online, according to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center.
  • 2015

    Instagram, the photo-sharing site, reaches 400 million users, outpacing Twitter, which would go on to reach 316 million users by the middle of the same year.
  • 2016

    Google unveils Google Assistant, a voice-activated personal assistant program, marking the entry of the Internet giant into the "smart" computerized assistant marketplace. Google joins Amazon's Alexa, Siri from Apple, and Cortana from Microsoft.