Internet and Web History

Preparatory Materials on computer peripherals:

  • The term hypertext was the contribution of Ted Nelson in his paper ""Literary Machines"" to the ACM in 1965. Link: Ted Nelson.
  • ICQ, the chat program, stands for I Seek You.
  • The first graphical browser was NCSA Mosaic written by Marc Andreesen.
  • The first RFC (Request For Comments) titled ""Host Software"", was submitted by Steve Crocker in 1969.
  • The first Smiley or Emoticon was used by Scott E. Fahlman on a Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) Bulletin Board on September 19, 1982. He suggested the use of :-) to mark posts which were jokes. Fahlman's original post, which was considered lost for ever, was retrieved by CMU facility staff member Jeff Baird on 10 September 2002 as part of an effort started by Microsoft Researcher Mike Jones in February 2002. Links: Original Bboard Thread in which :-) was proposed, The First Smiley :-) by Mike Jones, Smiley Lore :-) by Scott Fahlman.
  • Father of the World Wide Web (WWW): Tim Bernes-Lee. In 1990, Tim Berners-Lee, along with Robert Cailliau, wrote the first Internet client (a browser-editor running under NeXTStep) and the first WWW server along with most of the communications software, defining Uniform Resource Locators (URLs), Hyper Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP) and Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML). Links: CERN Article: History of the WWW, Tim Berners-Lee's original proposal in 1989.
  • The Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) was developed by Vinton Cerf and Robert E. Kahn.
  • William Gibson is called the father of cyberspace. It was he who coined the name in his 1982 novel 'Neuromancer'.
  • E-mail was invented by Ray Tomlinson in 1971 (Then there were only 23 computers on the Internet). The @ sign in e-mail addresses was also his contribution in 1972.
  • The popular GIF (Graphic Interchange Format) for web images was developed by CompuServe.


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