The Internet was not created by our ex Vice-President of the United States of America. No, contrary to our Nobel Peace Prize winners claim some years ago. I am not trying to pick on him but you realize that he had nothing; and I mean nothing to do with the Internet.
The Internet has evolved from a few modems, to hundreds to literally millions of modems to the info-speedway that it is today. I am claiming here and now that the Internet is just in its infancy and soon it will to even be referred to as the Internet. For example, you don't say “Hey, I am going to make a telephone call on the telephone line grid,” do you?
No, Really you just say that you are “Going to Google that” or “Email you real quick.” That is actually how it will be in the future. So, we will not be saying things like “I am going to get on the Internet and do this or do that.” That is not a reality, it will just be like going outside. This technology is already great and widespread but yet, still in its infancy.
Everyone knows what the DOD is, correct? It is the Department of Defense. It is a United States Governmental office that is part of the arrangement of agencies that keeps Americans safe today.
Well, the DOD decided that they needed a faster more secure way to communicate and they deployed this asynchronous modem technology to leverage better and faster communications across the great country of ours. They built an infrastructure that spanned the U.S. This was the original backbone, the infrastructure that later was replaced by more commercial circuits with what we call wider pipes. The bigger the circuit usually the faster the connection, simply because it is less likely to have contention.
You might think that the DOD has advanced past the general Internet usage, and you would be right. Think of every highway across the nation. Every road crisscrossing around is like a private circuit and with the added encryption. I do not pretend to know more than that as the Government agencies are protected and it is in our interest to protect them. This land that we love in the USA.
So, now we have agreed that the Internet was born about of dial-up modems going about a 33 kilobits per second. Back then in the 80's, that was pretty great and amazing for Cyber geeks in the making. Then people started figuring out ways to get more out of a modem and increasing the speed. After they could raise the speed a bit, then they began to bundle them. After they began to bundle them then it was really fast.
Then came the T1's and fractional T1's. A T1 is a circuit that is 1.544Mbps. Mbps is an acronym that stands for Mega Bits Per Second. There are circuits 100 or even 1000 times bigger now circling the globe. They connect ISP to ISP.
ISP is another name for Internet Service Provider. They are who own and control ip addressing after ARIN. They also connect to each other and delegate ip's to hosting providers. These hosting providers in turn lease space in the Colo's or Co-Location facilities. The businesses that rent the space offer goods, services, information, or sometimes nothing.
Usually people or businesses host a website so that they can make money which of course makes sense. Why do most of us do anything? Either love or money, right? And some thing the more money you have the more love you will get, although I know know that is not true. (We can save that for another article.)
So the businesses are dotted across the Internet, across the world they reside on ISP's. The ISP's are connected via BGP, Border Gateway Protocol. The BGP exchange routing prefixes and the IP does the rest basically. Then the Hosting providers residing on the ISPs have companies that have their websites on them and they are all found by Search Engines.
Some of the more popular Search Engines are:
(Certainly not listed in order of popularity.)
Search Engines have become not only facilitators of access to information about what the web has to offer, but also is a big part of the experience now. Back in the 90's you would be luck to get anything like what you wanted. It was all very spammy and pop-ups were killers. Now, at least the spammy stuff is more discounted.
John Tolsky is an experienced technical source and contributes to http://www.ccieadvisor.com and assists in training for the Cisco CCNA .