In 40 years, the internet has morphed from members of the military communication network into a enormous global cyberspace. And it all beginning in a California beer garden
In the kingdom of apps and unicorns, Rossottis is a rarity. This beer garden in the very heart of Silicon Valley has been standing on the same spot since 1852. It isnt disorderly; it doesnt proportion. But for more than 150 years, it has done one thing and done it well: it has given Californians a good lieu to get drunk.
During the course of its long world, Rossottis has been a frontier saloon, a gold rush gambling hell, and a Hells Angels hangout. These days it is called the Alpine Inn Beer Garden, and the clientele is still a potpourrus as ever. On the patio out back, there are cyclists in spandex and bikers in leather. There is a wild-haired man who might be a prof or a lunatic or a Ceo, scribbling into a notebook. In the parking lots is a Harley, a Maserati, and a horse.
It doesnt seem a likely spot for a major act of invention. But 40 years ago this August, a small team of scientists set up personal computers terminal at one of its picnic counters and conducted an extraordinary venture. Over plastic goblets of beer, they proved that a strange suggestion “ve called the” internet could run.
The internet is so vast and formless that its hard to thought it being invented. Its easy-going to envision Thomas Edison fabricating the lightbulb, because a lightbulb is easily to visualize. You can hold it in your hand and analyze it from every slant.
The internet is the opposite. Its everywhere, but we only see it in glimpses. The internet is like the holy ghost: it manufactures itself knowable to us by taking wealth of the pixels on our screens to reveal locates and apps and email, but its essence is always elsewhere.
This feature of the internet manufactures it seem extremely complex. Surely something so pervasive yet invisible must necessary deep technical sophistication to understand. But it doesnt. The internet is profoundly simple-minded. And that simplicity be essential to its success.
The people who fabricated the internet came from all over “the worlds”. They made at homes as varied as the French government-sponsored computer network Cyclades, Englands National Physical Laboratory, the University of Hawaii and Xerox. But the mothership was the US defense departments lavishly funded investigate arm, the Advanced Research Projection Agency( Arpa) who subsequently changed its reputation to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency( Darpa) and its numerous contractors. Without Arpa, the internet wouldnt exist.
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