Things I Didn’t Know: Internet Edition

Ken AshfordScience & Technology1 Comment

I knew that the Internet is an outgrowth of ARPANET ("ARPA" = Advanced Research Projects Agency, which was a division under the Department of Justice Defense [of course — what was I thinking when I typed "Justice"?]), which was created in the late 1960’s/early 1970’s as a way for the military to get info and data (quietly) from those in the academic world.

What I didn’t know is that there exists a 1963 memo about forming the ARPANET.  You can read it here.  I particularly like the memo is addressed to "Members and Affiliates of the Intergalactic Computer Network".

I also didn’t know that the first ARPA consisted of four nodes ("users" in present day parlance).  Here’s original documentation:


The nodes were at UCLA, Stanford Research Institute, UC Santa Barbara, and University of Utah.

The first login to a remote computer is shown by this, uh, log (yes, the word "login" comes from the fact that connecting to host computers were logged in a written log):


A description of the historical event:

The programmers in Westwood (UCLA – Ed.) were to type "log" into their computer, with the SRI computer in Palo Alto filling out the rest of the command, adding "in."

"We set up a telephone connection between us and the guys at SRI," Kleinrock recalled. "We typed the L, and we asked on the phone, ‘Do you see the L?’ ‘Yes, we see the L,’ came the response. We typed the O, and we asked, ‘Do you see the O?’ ‘Yes, we see the O.’ Then we typed the G, and the system crashed!" They immediately rebooted and this time, ARPANET sprung to life. (Source)

I learned all this from an interesting post at Neatorama.

oh, by the way, the first video posted on YouTube was uploaded at 8:27 pm on Saturday April 23rd, 2005. It was of one of the YouTube founders at the San Diego Zoo:

That kid’s a multibillionaire now.