Happy Birthday Internet: 5 History Videos


National Geographic has pegged September 2, 2009 as the 40th anniversary of the Internet. They do not cite their source and our source doesn’t make the same claim. But, August 30, 1969 is the date the first Interface Message Processor was delivered to the Arpanet. The IMP is what allowed different computer networks to talk to each other and so it follows that September 2 is probably an acceptable date to celebrate.

To commemorate this glorious day we’re sharing some of our favorite History of the Internet videos. Start with the National Geographic video and then take in the geeky, the new, the old, and the simple.

The Geeky:


[Ethan Zuckerman] walks us through the history as only a geek could. This video starts off with a picture of the guys who invented the IMP which is what facilitated the first information transfer between networks (the Internet). “The Internet as we know it came into being in 1969”.

The New:


A fairly brilliant video presentation of how the Internet developed from several smaller networking projects. Accessible to experts and novices alike.

The Old:


A CBC news report on “The growing phenomenon of: Internet” made in the pre-broadband days. It’s interesting that “the” is missing when they refer to “The Internet”. At 3:25 you can see a lengthy description of what those new-fangled emoticons are all about.

The Simple:


A short animated video that explains IP addresses and how a computer connects to the internet through a service provider.

18 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Internet: 5 History Videos

  1. I have a theory/memory about the phenomena of “the” as something that has spread from So-CAL out to the rest of the country some times around 1999-2003, as far as I can tell.

    I remember that freeways outside of southern-California, just 8 years a go, were called “101, 5, 12” but now they are called “the 101, the 5, the 12”; a road trip to Minnesota in 2001, then living in LA for 5 months shortly after that, helped me to hear a lack of “the” in places outside LA. Despite all of this, by the end of the report, “the” is adopted; I think that in the case of “the internet” it may be seen as a logical attachment, given that the internet is largely recognized as an entity of it’s own.

    (I still argue that freeways don’t require “the” at the front, but that might be because I was raised on the older system; “take 101 south to Santa Rosa” In these days, people tend to say “take the 101 south to Santa Rosa.” In this case, “the”, is extraneous and a waste of data space; people know that 101 is a freeway.)


  2. Look it up in Nerds 2.0 (the book). Sept 2 is OK with me but I would rather see the date moved on to when the 2nd IMP was installed and data transfered, which wasn’t much later. The 1st IMP only acted as a router on the first campus until the 2nd node became active. This book is a must read like Hackers by Levine. On paper (low power). Not available at your monitor. Thales

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