Some thirty years ago, the United States government was deeply involved in the cold war. Nuclear weapons were a popular topic of conversation, and a question of national security arose: How will we communicate in the event of a nuclear attack? Many different solutions were brought forward, but eventually only one remained. A computer network without a central core.
The proposed network would have no central authority. It would be designed to 'Operate in Tatters from the very beginning'. (Sterling 3) The United States would need a command and control network, or a network that could be controlled from city-to-city, and state-to-state. The principles were very simple. Operation would be assumed to be unreliable at all times. Little did the scientists know, they were creating the greatest network ever known.
From the very beginning, educational institutes were involved in the planning of the Internet. In 1969 UCLA and MIT established the first connection.
By 1971 there were 15 nodes. By the second year of operation, one thing became clear. The Internet's users had warped the high speed digital communication network from an advanced computer-sharing resource to an electronic gossip line. (Sterling 5) In the following fifteen years, the Internet would see evolution from the government, and educational institutions. It was not until 1987 did the commercial sector establish a presence on the Internet.
UUNET was founded in 1987 to provide businesses with commercial Internet access. UUNET established the first e-mail service ever available to users outside of military or educational fields. This marked the beginning of the Internet explosion.
Funding from commercial sources eventually increased that Internet's traffic capacity. From 1987 to 1991, the Internet increased bandwidth limits by a factor of 44. More and more businesses, schools, and most importantly individuals were starting to access the Internet. The...