From the archive: ‘Latterly, there has been a growing sense that the Internet phenomenon is all hype and no substance’

What is the internet? Carissa Casey set out to explain the now-ubiquitous computer network, back when it still seemed it might be no more than a flash in the pan

7th January, 2018
Web users surf the net at an internet café in the mid-1990s Picture: Jonathan Elderfield

The internet is the nearest thing we have today to an information superhighway. It is an inter-network of computers which spans the globe and can be accessed easily and relatively cheaply.

What we now know is the internet began life at the United States Department of Defense as a means of sharing information between research facilities. The network was designed in such a way that a piece of information could travel from one computer to...

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