What is the Internet?
The Internet is a network of computers that are interconnected worldwide to share information.
It is a network of computing equipment that relates to each other through the use of a universal language.
The name Internet comes from the English words Interconnected Networks, which means “interconnected networks“.
The Internet is the union of all the networks and computers distributed throughout the world, so it could be defined as a global network in which all the networks that use TCP/IP protocols and are compatible with each other are brought together.
This”network of networks”, as it is also known, involves computers of all kinds, from large systems to personal models.
The network brings together official, government, educational, scientific and business institutions that make their information available to millions of people.
How did the Internet come about?
The Internet was the result of a U.S. Department of Defense experiment in 1969.
This materialized in the development of ARPAnet, a network that linked universities and high technology centers with contractors from that department.
Its purpose was the exchange of data between scientists and military personnel. The network was joined by nodes from Europe and the rest of the world, forming what is known as the World Wide Web. In 1990 ARPAnet ceased to exist.
Contrary to popular belief, the Internet and the World Wide Web are not synonymous. The WWW is an information system developed in 1989 by Tim Berners Lee and Robert Cailliau.
This service allows access to information that is linked via the HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol).
The development of the Internet has far surpassed all expectations and constituted a true revolution in modern society.
The system became a pillar of communications, entertainment, and commerce in every corner of the globe.
How does the Internet work?
Now that we have a clear understanding of the key parts of the process, we can begin to explain how it works.
Then, any site that works with compatible protocols can be read by a normal computer. These are called transmission control protocol (TCP).
Another thing to keep in mind is IP Addresses, you may have already heard of them. These are the addresses assigned for each of the internet terminals, by this, we mean that each computer, each smartphone, and each server has its own unique and unrepeatable IP address.
This is how easy it is to track a computer to send information and also receive it.
With this we want to explain that the Internet is not an accumulation of information in a supermarket, it is a network of interconnected computers around the world.
Millions upon millions of computers sharing their information second by second.
Types of Internet connections
Internet connections are the means available for a user to use the services offered by the Internet through devices that use computer technology, such as computers, tablets, and mobile phones.
As the Internet is a network, it can be accessed through several channels.
It is possible to use a telephone line that is subdivided into conventional telephone lines (it transmits signals in an analogical way but they were currently displaced by others that offer greater benefits) or digital (by means of the use of a network adapter the resulting computer frames are translated into digital signals).
Cable (fiber optic)
It can also be a cable connection (which implements light signals instead of electrical signals that encode a greater amount of information and in turn, this cable is a material called fiber optic that allows you to transmit data between nodes).
There is also a satellite connection (we are usually talking about a hybrid satellite and telephone connection system to reduce congestion in terrestrial networks).
In turn, we can implement wireless networks (which replace cables with infrared light signals or radio waves to transmit information).
In short, within wireless networks, another method used is LMDS (which is an acronym for Local Multipoint Distribution System and consists of using high-frequency radio waves).
If we talk about power lines we use PLC (conjunction of three words: Power Line Communications).
Finally, we can use mobile telephony (which refers to communications available for cell phones to access the Internet).
How information travels on the Internet
When you enter a web address in your browser, your computer sends an electronic request to your Internet Service Provider (ISP).
The ISP routes the request to a domain name server (DNS) that will look for a match for the domain name you typed in (for example clinic-cloud.com). If it finds a match, it will direct the request to the IP address of the appropriate server.
The request will eventually reach a web server. The server will respond by sending the requested file (in this case a web page) in a series of packages.
Packets are parts of a file that range from 1,000 to 1,500 bytes. The packages have headers and footers that tell computers what’s in the package and how it fits in with other packages to create a complete file.
When the packages arrive on your computer, it assembles them to create the page you see on the screen. As you may have seen, the entire process is a matter of microseconds.
Who is responsible for the Internet?
Nobody and everybody.
Unlike the telephone network, which for years was operated by a single company in many countries, the global Internet consists of thousands of interconnected networks run by service providers, individual companies, universities, governments, and others.
What does the Internet infrastructure look like?
The Internet is a network of networks that needs to operate in the world as if it were a single thing.
Like politics, the technical coordination of the Internet has these common characteristics:
- Run by non-profit organizations that work together to meet the needs of everyone.
This automatic regulation has been the key to the successful growth of the Internet and its flexibility to adapt to the changing needs of the future.
Internet as a means of communication
From the point of view of the media, the Internet is one of the means available for transmitting information, with many possibilities and with great repercussion in society since the end of the 20th century.
The characteristics of the Internet allow the presentation of information in a multitude of formats such as sound, video, images, and text.
It allows elements of other media to be combined, such as radio, journalism, and television.
One of the characteristics of the Internet from the point of view of communication is that it allows interaction between users and the medium itself.
Uses of the Internet
The Internet opens the doors to thousands and thousands of different services, among them it will allow us:
- Search for any information you need (for example, Google).
- Buy a variety of products (for example, Amazon or Ebay)
- Communicate with family or friends in other countries or cities by video call (for example, Skype or Whatsapp).
- Play online games (such as League of Legends) with people of different nationalities and ages in real time.
Web Browsers for the Internet
This is one of the best quality navigation software currently available, and it is also available for free download.
Explorer is an older service, already discontinued, but was once the market leader.
Its creation dates back to approximately 1995, and it was launched by the leading company Microsoft.
During its first decade of existence it was the most widely used, presenting the greatest modernity, but today it has become one of the slowest despite its updates, which is why it has lost a large number of users.
Firefox is presented as the alternative launched by the company Mozilla, which caused a furor in its inclusion in the market due to the existing compatibility with both Apple and Microsoft operating systems.
In addition, it is a fast service because it uses little memory (less hardware requirements) at the time of each search, but has the best security offered on the market so far.
Safari created by Apple. Perhaps one of the fastest, fully compatible with this brand’s operating system, while the Microsoft-compatible version no longer receives updates, so you don’t get the same performance.
How many people are connected to the Internet
The 2018 Global Digital study by We are Social and Hootsuite has just been released. It establishes that there are 4,021 million people using the Internet in the world. That figure is 7 percent higher than in January 2016.
Why half plus one? Because the world population is estimated at 7.593 billion people.
That is, 53% of the Earth’s inhabitants are connected to the grid. Of these, a total of 5,135 million (68%) came from mobile devices.
The number of Internet users in the world exceeds 50% of the population: 4,000 million (2018)
Sixty-eight percent of the people who are connected to the Internet, or 5.135 billion dolls, use mobile devices.
Social networking activity totalled 3,196 million (penetration of 42%). Networks and mobile devices
According to the 2018 Global Digital Report, of a total population of 7.6 billion, the following numbers are available:
Users Connected to the Internet in 2018
The number of Internet users in 2018 is 4,021 billion, growing by 7% year on year.
The number of social network users in 2018 is 3.196 billion, growing by 13% year on year
Mobile phone users in 2018 is 5.135 billion, growing by 4% year on year.
Simon Kemp of the We are social blog says:”Much of the growth this year as more and more people are getting access to a cell phone and mobile data plans, too.
More than 200 million people barely got a mobile phone in 2017 and two-thirds of the 7.6 billion people already use a cell phone.
More than half of the phones in use are”smart”, so more and more people are enjoying the Internet experience wherever they are.
Countries connected to the Internet
According to the study, the ranking of countries where the Internet has the highest penetration is led by the: United Arab Emirates, sharing its leadership with Qatar, which has achieved 99% of the population connected.
The two Arab countries are followed by others with a penetration rate of over 97%, such as:
- Spain is in 18th place with a penetration of 85.
- Egypt, the country with the highest growth in the number of Internet users
On the other hand, those countries that have shown the greatest increase in the number of Internet users are Egypt, with an increase of 41%.
Kenya with a 35% increase in the number of users and Saudi Arabia with a 34% increase in the number of Internet users.
The figures for Internet penetration in different regions of the world are also very striking.
In northern and western Europe, for example, more than 90 percent of the population is connected, something similar to what happened in the United States (88 percent).
In South America, the level is 68 percent, in Central America 61 percent and in the Caribbean 48 percent.
Julian Assange, in his book: When Google found WikiLeaks, he revealed how Google Facebook and Amazon, among others, spy on and monitor us and how they filter that information to U.S. intelligence agencies.
According to the author, today the big companies in cyberspace are watching and controlling us more than the States themselves.
So, when we use a computer, a tablet, a smartphone and when we think we can surf the Internet freely, we leave the mark of our private life and, as Assange says, companies like Google collect the data that we disseminate in cyberspace and secretly archive it. And if necessary, they can use it against us at any time.
Spy stuffed animals
Any device connected to the Internet is susceptible to hacking and must, therefore, be protected.
However, in most cases, this is not the case and users do not even notice the risks. A Rapid7 report released last week revealed that something as harmless as Fisher Price teddy bears could have compromised the data of millions of children. Information such as your name, age or nationality.
But the multinational’s stuffed animals, whose parent company is Mattel, are not the first intelligent toys to present vulnerabilities.
Last November, a hacker broke into the servers of Chinese toy manufacturer VTech, which produces tablets and phones for children, and stole the data of more than five million parents and 200,000 children.
In addition to toys, vulnerabilities have been detected in smart TVs, camcorders, and even cars.
Regarding the latter, the U.S. division of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles called for a review last year of 7,810 vehicles to update the software on their radios and prevent them from being hacked by hackers.
Company researchers demonstrated that it was possible to remotely shut down a car while it was on the road.
A great book I recommend is this.
- Sir Tim Berners-Lee
- Publisher: HarperBusiness
- Edition no. 1 (11/07/2000)
- Pasta blanda: 256 pages