You Didn’t Build That Could the Internet…
You Didn’t Build That
Could the Internet have been created by private industry? Without government’s help as funder and convenor? I don’t think so. Here’s why.
When the ARPANET was created, each of the research laboratories around the country had different equipment. That meant we had to figure out how to connect machines that were manufactured by different companies. The first four computers on the ARPANET were the Xerox Data Systems Sigma 7 at UCLA, the Scientific Data Systems (later acquired by Xerox Data Systems) SDS 940 at SRI International, the IBM 360/75 at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and the Digital Equipment PDP-10 at the University of Utah. In order to connect these computers, there had to be some sort of common standard that was not controlled by any single company. This applied to every level of the system, from the hardware interface to the IMP to the basic protocols that moved messages from one computer to another, to the higher level applications such as email and, later, the world wide web. The open architecture of the Internet, with defined interfaces and open standards that were all freely available, initially made it possible for any person and any company to participate. This was a fundamental principle of the early work. This was also a hallmark of the government research effort, and would not have come about if the Internet had been created by industry
Steve Crocker is chairman of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. In the late 1960s, he was a UCLA graduate student who helped create the ARPANET, a precursor to the Internet. Duri…imported from Google+