Prediction of the Internet

by Jan_Rzymkowski 1 min read1st Aug 20146 comments


The internet is quite a special invention. It had huge impact on the way we live in number of ways. And yet, it is mainly a conceptual breakthrough. While for most of history, humanity didn't have the technology needed for its creation, the internet wasn't even imagined shortly until its emergence. Many other technologies had no such problem (flight, audiovisual long-distance communication, audiovisual recording, death rays a.k.a. lasers or teleportation - as an example of a phenomenon we can easily conceive even though we're nowhere near the technology needed for it)

My question is when was the Internet predicted for the first time, when the idea of the Internet was uttered for the first time?

Let me clarify, what I mean by the Internet. I don't mean global communication. This is achieved by telephone networks, (was by) telegrams or by e-mails or Skype. But those are not the Internet, they are just part of it. Nor do I mean the global library - while this is closer to what I find essential about the Internet, it doesn't encompass the whole idea. Global library means one-way communication, analogous to a real library. It also emphasises the special status of authors, professionals, not ordinary folk. And even before the advent of Web 2.0, the internet was in great part created by amateurs. The internet is more of a form of huge advertising column, to which access is easy and which is not a curated repository of knowledge, but rather a mix of ads, telephone book, practical information about shops and services, information published by amateurs in a subject, personal diaries, a medium of exchange of goods, etc. - and on top of that, a tool for interpersonal communication. Eventually, it is a clearly a new form of communication, encompassing both two-way communication of casual chat and one-way communication between reader and author.

This is the idea I mean by the Internet. When was the first time this specific idea came to existence? When had people realised that global network of PCs and servers will result in that form of communication, creating its own space - cyberspace, rather than just a tool for communication and a form of a library?