In this chapter, you will have a journey of the past that will reveal out how Internet, as we are seeing it now, took shape. We shall cover how different discoveries paved the path of Internet and the man behind the scene. You would love to read this and absolutely have wonderful time reading it.
“I am thinking about something much more important than bombs; I am thinking about computers”
-John Von Neumann, Computer Pioneer (Associated with the design of Hydrogen Bomb)
At rare moments in history, certain ideas overturn conventional knowledge and lead to innovations which make a difference to the quality of life we lead. Several such ideas have led to great discoveries and inventions in physics, communications and computer technologies and have paved the path to the emergence of the Internet as we use it today.
The impact of several critical ideas, often ignored or even ridiculed, is not immediately felt. When many of the inventions were made , it was not possible to envisage how they would morph into innovative technologies and what uses they would support. Such a thing was also with radio waves discovered by Heinrich Hertz (1857-1894) and later it took the shape of Internet. Read further to know how?
Several innovative ideas , discoveries and inventions have contributed to the technologies underlying the Internet but the most important of them are given in the table below chronologically.
Year wise development of Internet
Inventions Leading to the World Wide Web: A Timeline
Blaise Pascal invents the first mechanical adding machine
Isaac Newton studies the different colors in white light in a prism.
Benjamin Franklin shows that lightning is a form of electricity.
Leonhard Euler shows that the wavelength of light determines its colors.
Antoine Lavoisier discovers silicon.
Joseph Jacquard uses punch cards to create patterns on fabric, a technique in modern computers.
Samuel Morse demonstrates Morse code for telegraphy.
Charles Babbage designs the first general purpose programmable mechanical computer.
Ada Lovelace writes the first computer programme.
Kelvin develops his temperature scale.
Submarine telegraph cable laid under the English Channel.
James Clerk Maxwell describes the electromagnetic waves.
Mendeleev formulates the Periodic Table of Elements.
A telegraph cable spans the Atlantic Ocean.
Heinrich Hertz detects radio waves.
Max Plank proposes Quantum Theory. He and Einstein held that light comes in bundles of energy called Quanta or Photons.
First Transatlantic radio signal sent.
Einstein describes the photoelectric effect. Fleming invents Vacuum Tubes.
Edison develops movie picture with sound.
Ernest Rutherford discovers that an atom has a nucleus and orbiting electrons.
Niels Bohr proposes that electrons travel around the nucleus in fixed energy levels.
Vladimir Zworykin develops cathode ray tube used in televisions.
John Logie Baird transmits the first clear television image.
Charles Townes and Prokhorov and Basov invent the maser.
John Bardeen, Walter Brattain and William Shockley invent the transistor.
Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce independently invent the Integrated Circuits (IC)
Optical fiber transmits laser light signals.
Ted Nelson envisage a computer to write in anon-linear format and retrieve a document from a short quotation.
Ted Hoff develops the microprocessor.
Silicon chips used for making electronic circuits.
First cell phone used.
First personal computer developed.
Fiber optics used.
Global positioning System (GPS) becomes operational.
Internet is formed.
World Wide web developed.
Blaise Pascal : first Computer Engineer and Leibnitz the second
Blaise Pascal in France designed and built the first workable automatic calculating machine (1642), so to call him the first computer engineer is not wrong in the sense. He was followed by Leibnitz in Berlin (1666), credited with the first general purpose calculating device to meet the needs of mathematicians and book keepers. It had all the elements of a modern keyboard but it could not have been constructed economically. Paper and pencil would have been cheaper for the job.
Sir Charles Babbage : Father of Computers
Not so successful was Charkes babbage (1791-1871) in England, who made thousands of detailed drawings (from 1833 onwards), which projected the fundamentals of today’s computers. The computer pioneer designed the first automatic computer device, known as differential engine (based on programming) and an Analytical Engine, though he failed to build them. A Swedish inventor completed the work on Difference Engine in 1854. Babbage was far ahead of his time. His analytical engine was in fact interpreted by Lady Ada Lovelace , now considered to be the first programmer. She even corrected babbage’s calculations. The first complete Babbage engine was rebuilt in London in 2002.
In The Last
Till now we had a short glimpse at the development of Internet. In the next chapters we shall cover much interesting topics like how Hydrogen Bomb design lead to the invention of Internet too and some more interesting extras that will inspire you and provide knowledge as well. Do not forget to subscribe us as we also inbox you every updates that matters to you.
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