Running Head: Internet Internet: Our New World Abstract During the last years the use of the Internet has been very controversial theme, bringing different points of view. Some agree that its use is more advantageous than disadvantageous while others think differently. This paper shows the birth of the Internet, its founders, its pioneers, some advantages and disadvantages, and its future. This research also makes some suggestions for a better protection and functioning of the Internet. Internet Our New World The Internet, sometimes called simply “the Net,” is a worldwide system of computer networks – a network of networks in which users at any one computer can, if they have permission, get information from any other computer (and sometimes talk directly to users at other computers)” (Internet, 2010). Today, Internet Service Providers companies like AOL, Insight, Comcast, AT&T, among others have created the infrastructure to facilitate the Internet access to everyone in the U. S. Physically the Internet connection is the connection from one or more computers to several special computers called servers.
These servers allow people to display web pages from a browser and access other services that offer these special computers. Technically, the Internet is composed by a set of protocols called TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/ Internet Protocol). The Internet applications which affect our daily life in important ways since its creation include several stages like its history, its advantages, its disadvantages, and its future Everybody in these days talks, debates, argues, and uses the Internet, but does anybody know when all of this abut Internet began?
Everything began when The Soviet Union launched its first artificial satellite, Sputnik in 1957, proving before the eyes of the world they were leading the technology in the world. As a consequence of this event, the- United States president, Dwight D. Eisenhower, exhorted to the best of the best American scientists to create something that could compete against the Soviet Union invention. On February 7, 1958 a real network was born thanks to the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET) by the Department of Defense Directive 5105. 41 and Public Law 85-325.
The first recorded description of the social interactions that could be enabled through networking was a series of memos written by J. C. R Licklider of MIT in August 1962 discussing his “Galactic Network” concept. He envisioned a globally interconnected set of computers through which everyone could quickly access data and programs from any site. (Banks, 2008, p. 2). In 1965 working with Thomas Merril, Roberts connected the TX-2 computer in mass to the Q-32 in California with a low speed dial-up telephone line creating the first small wide-area computer network ever built.
In 1972 Ray Tomlinson at Bolt Beranek and Newman (BBN) wrote the basic email message send and read software motivated by the need of the ARPANET developers for an easy coordination mechanism. (Banks, 2008, p. 4) By the end 70’s Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn decided to develop a new version of the protocol which could meet the needs of an open-architecture network environment. This protocol would eventually be called the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP). The first use of the term “Internet” appears in a conference paper by Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn.
TCP/IP was adopted as a defense standard three years earlier in 1980. This enabled Defense to begin sharing in the DARPA. Internet technology was based and led directly to the eventual portioning of the military and non-military communities. (Banks, 2008, p. 13). Thus, by 1985, Internet was already well established as a technology supporting a broad community of researches and developers, and was beginning to be used by other communities for daily computer communications. (Banks, 2008, p. 100) Benefits of the Internet
In these technological times if a company denies the opportunity to promote itself through the Internet it may be in a risky situation. One of the advantages that the Internet provides to business is the opportunity to promote their products, services, and brands, because for many consumers the Internet is the first step in the research and comparison of products, services, and prices. It has now been shown that teenagers and young adults specially spend more time online than watching TV. Another advantage is that Internet provides management a valuable tool for a more efficient way to evelop a better business performance and purpose. It also helps managers to find better resources (land, employees, raw materials, building, etc), increase and improve in a more competitive way in their operations. (Gale, 2005 p. 74). Social interaction is an additional benefit that the Internet provides to customers. Thanks to technology we can interact, debate, and argue without being physically present. Sometimes when we are physically in a group we are afraid to express or say something about what we think, because we think it could be stupid, or because somebody can make fun of us, and sometimes it could be finished in a fight.
However technology allows us to express our ideas without exposing our faces, and without being humiliated in front of somebody else. Besides, the Internet gives us the opportunity to interact with any person in the world who can access it. For example; I hear from my family every week thanks to the Internet, because it is cheaper and more convenient to communicate. I can send photos, videos, letters, etc at a reasonable fee. I can also mention Face book, Twitter, Sonic, among others where people interact with each other all around the world. Laura, 2004, p. 48). Another benefit the Internet offers to consumers is the easy use of product, service, and price research. “One in five customers walking into Sears department store in America to buy an electrical appliance will have researched their purchase online-and most will know down to a dime what they intend to pay. ” “More surprisingly three out of four Americans start shopping for new cars online, even though most end up buying them from traditional dealers. ” (Gale, 2005, p. 74).
One more benefit customers can get from Internet is they can get aid with important issues like: •Caring for someone with a major illness or medical condition •Looking for information about a major illness or medical condition •Making a major investment or financial decision •Finding a new place to live •Changing jobs •Buying a personal computer, etc Most Americans (81%) have asked for help with one of these issues from at least one of their core ties, while nearly half (46%) have asked for help with one of these issues from at least one of their significant ties. (Gale, 2007, p 46). Education is another benefit of the Internet. Students and teachers now can take advantage of the Internet because they can use it to find extra sources for their tasks, like virtual libraries, databases, and specialized people that can help them. Teachers can learn from others professors around the country and inclusive around the world some techniques that help them to improve their teaching methodologies. In addition, Internet breaks the old habit learning from taking classes on campus instead of online.
There are some people who need some assistance like tutoring and they can get it online without going to any specific place. Internet also brings the option for employees who have a busy schedule to take classes online and give them a better chance to fulfill their projects. (Gale, 2007, p. 79). Teachers are not the only source students have to learn from, but now students can get some extra information from the Internet. Teachers on the other side can interact with students from different grades, class, and from another state or place at the same time thanks to the Internet.
Finally, “Almost 100 million adult Americans in 2003 used the Internet for health care information. ” (Gale, 2005, p. 50). People can use the Internet to research about any disease or treatment better than ever before. Now patients have the possibility to go to their appointments more informed about their diseases or treatments developing a better understanding between patient and doctor. Not only patients but also doctors can take advantage of Internet by having access to more wide sources of information.
Doctors also can ask for advice of any doctor in any country, and can access some experiments in any specific area. Disadvantages of the Internet One of the disadvantages of Internet is cyber terrorism. According to the National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC),”cyber terrorism is a criminal act perpetrated through computers resulting in violence, death and/ or destruction, and creating terror for the purpose of coercing a government to change its policies. “According to some experts, cyber terrorism can be used to intimidate people in order to sell more antivirus and create more fear between populations.
Experts state that fear could bring some profit for some companies. There are also many people who consider that an Internet attack could be impossible, because it was designed for any catastrophic event. Others compare a cyber attack to the damage of small group that could not call anybody’s attention. As professor Dorothy Denning (Bocij, 2006, p. 5) believed that terrorists, instead of using computers to attack, would be more motivated to use traditional ways of attack, like the use of weapons. For example: bombs, virus, etc.
Another reason she believes they do not attack using computers is because it would be more difficult to gain control and make a considerable damage; however, if they use bombs, the damage would be greater. (Bocij, 2006, p. 5). The combination of some viruses, worms, Trojans, and spyware sometimes called malicious software or malware is another disadvantage of the Internet. These programs are created in order to steal, modify, or wipe out information through the Internet. All viruses’ damage or change data in some way.
As an example, when a virus first infects a machine, it stores a copy of itself on the computer’s hard disk or somewhere else, sometimes overwriting important data. A badly written virus may also cause the computer to become unstable, corrupting important files or causing users to lose their data when the machine crashes. According to Bocij “one way to calculate the damage caused by viruses is by analyzing the average cost of the incident. ” (p. 33). Bocij also said that “according to Microsoft around 6 percent of all business computers experienced data loss in 1998”. On the cost of a virus attack Bocij put it at “around $2,500. (p. 40). Business clients are the first to be the target of viruses because the number of systems they operate. Thousands of people who work with computers double the probability of getting infected by some virus, and as consequence, the cost of removing the same one or lose some hours of work can amount millions of dollars. For some people, it is the data stored on their computers that is most valuable to them. Many people keep a great deal of personal or sensitive information on their systems like family photographs, home accounts, letters, e-mails, credit card information, or school or college work.
Losing a collection of sensitive photographs or important information can be frustrating, but many people fail to take even the simplest precautions, such as installing antivirus software. Although identity theft has existed for hundreds of years, today it is considered as an Internet disadvantage. It is important to know that the Internet did not create identity theft; a report by Caslon Analytics gives some illustrations of identity theft through history. The report mentions in the Old and New Testament of the Bible identity theft by false prophets.
A frequent technique to collect someone else is information is by searching through a person’s documents like daily mail, receipts, information from some companies or government databases. Another identity theft is stealing someone else passwords and then committing the crime. The Internet can allow skilled people to steal even from other countries. Americans should not worry only about other Americans from being stolen from them, but they are equally vulnerable to criminals operating in Europe, Far East, and elsewhere. (Bocij, 2006, p. 85). The future of the Internet
Could you imagine the way we will buy in a future? No more lines, no more waiting, you are the only customer who cares. Thanks to the Internet we will have better catalogs of products in different dimensions and shapes. We could be inclusive virtually testing the products in order to see if the products fit while sitting in our homes, office, airplane, etc. Some people will always want to shop traditionally because that is recreation for them. Through the Internet businesses will expand their sales thereby allowing them to cut cost and drop the prices of their products and services.
The Internet will open the door for a more global democracy. In the future when the Internet is available to those poor people in the less developed countries, it will empower them to live a better life. Governments can influence people’s minds, and the way they think by denying them access to any democracy’s sources (TV, Internet, magazines, newspapers, etc). That is the technique that the government of Cuba has been using since the beginning of its revolution. The Internet will show people what the meaning of democracy is showing them a different voting system, explaining what the freedom of expression is.
The Internet will provide Cubans to share information with everybody else around the world, and change people’s minds. People are increasingly demanding the use of Internet, and ideas are becoming more available to anybody who has access to it. Humans will not only depend on some news media, magazines or books to get informed, they will have the chance to get information from Internet too. Doctors, engineers, politician, housewives without regard to time or space will have the possibility to publish their ideas to share them with everybody else.
In conclusion, the phenomenal growth of the Internet is a major component of the information revolution. However, no one can deny the threat it can provide to society when it is used negatively. Some examples are cyber terrorism, identity theft, and malwares. Despite these negative effects, people can prevent these acts by taking the right precaution, but overall the Internet it is more beneficial for society and businesses, because we have seen in just last few years how the Internet has changed the way in which many people communicate and interact.
Internet continues to be a positive and highly beneficial tool, which will undoubtedly improve education, information exchange, and commerce in years to come. In other words, the Internet will enrich many aspects of our daily life. References Banks, M. (2008). The Secret history of the internet and its founders. New York, NY: Springer-Verlag. Bocij, P. (2006). The Dark side of the internet. West, Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers. Egendorf, L. (2004). The Information revolution.
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