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What is the Internet?

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(UN Geneva - Alvin Wei-Cheng Wong)

 

What is the Internet? While it may seem like a simple question, defining the Internet isn’t easy. Because unlike any other technology, the Internet can be whatever we make it. We can shape it. We can mold it. But most importantly, we can use it to connect people, communities, and countries around the world.

 

What the Internet Looks Like

 

  • [CNN Labs]: What the Internet looks like: The undersea cables wiring the ends of the Earth. The information age is powered by thin fiber-optic cables buried in the sea bed, spreading between continents to connect the most remote corners of the planet. These great arteries account for practically all of our international web traffic, and each one has been logged by Washington research firm Telegeography in its interactive Submarine Cable Map 2014. (click here to find out more).
  • [Vox]: 40 maps that explain the Internet: The internet increasingly pervades our lives, delivering information to us no matter where we are. It takes a complex system of cables, servers, towers, and other infrastructure, developed over decades, to allow us to stay in touch with our friends and family so effortlessly. Here are 40 maps that will help you better understand the internet — where it came from, how it works, and how it's used by people around the world.

 

Internet Evolution


[Internet Society]:

  • Brief History of the Internet: The Internet today is a widespread information infrastructure, the initial prototype of what is often called the National (or Global or Galactic) Information Infrastructure. Its history is complex and involves many aspects - technological, organizational, and community. And its influence reaches not only to the technical fields of computer communications but throughout society as we move toward increasing use of online tools to accomplish electronic commerce, information acquisition, and community operations.
  • What is the Internet? While it may seem like a simple question, defining the Internet isn’t easy. Because unlike any other technology, the Internet can be whatever we make it. We can shape it. We can mold it. But most importantly, we can use it to connect people, communities, and countries around the world.
  • How it Works: The Internet works because open standards allow every network to connect to every other network. This is what makes it possible for anyone to create content, offer services, and sell products without requiring permission from a central authority. It levels the playing field for everyone and it’s the reason why we have a rich diversity of applications and services that many of us enjoy today.
  • Who’s in charge of the Internet? No one is, but everyone is. Unlike the telephone network, which for years in most countries, was run by a single company, the global Internet consists of tens of thousands of interconnected networks run by service providers, individual companies, universities, governments, and others.
  • What’s the infrastructure of the Internet like? The Internet is that it’s a network of networks that needs to operate around the world as if it were one. Like policy, the technical coordination of the Internet has common characteristics: Open, Independent, Run by non-profit membership organizations that work together to meet the needs everyone. This self-regulation has been the key to the successful growth of the Internet and is flexible enough to adapt to changing future needs. Read about the technical aspects of the Internet.
  • How Is the Internet Evolving? As more and more people join the connected world, what are some of the biggest challenges we face when it comes to the future of the Internet? Find out what experts have to say about the way the Internet is changing.

 

 

 

 

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