arpanet

Remember How The First Thing Ever Sold Online Was A Baggie Of Weed?

Online drug sales gained notoriety thanks to the Silk Road market, but the buying and selling of illegal mood-altering substances through computers goes a lot farther back. In fact, the very first online transaction was a drug deal.


1975 Article On Internet Spying Not Written By Time Traveller, Probably

People often think about internet spying as relatively new. But the internet was used for spying before we even called it the internet — and when we look back at news articles from the era, we can’t say we weren’t warned.


US Federal Reserve's Cold War Bunker Had $US4 Billion Cash For After The Apocalypse

New York and DC are piles of ash, but at least your cheques are clearing. That was the idea behind the Culpeper Switch, a sprawling bunker built by the US Federal Reserve to keep the banks running after nuclear apocalypse. But even some Cold War-era politicians thought it was silly.


A History Of Internet Spying, Part 2

How long have intelligence agencies been keeping tabs on the internet? And what role did these agencies play in creating the internet we use today? For the most part, these kinds of questions have been relegated to comments sections on random blogs and the occasional tweet from researchers. So we’re hoping to remedy that in whatever small way we can, starting with a look at the 1960s and 70s.


Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!

Happy birthday, internet! You may be turning 45 today, but we swear you don’t look a day over 30. And not to embarrass you, but we thought we’d celebrate by sharing some of your baby photos. Or, more accurately, perhaps some of your sonograms.


Someone Embroidered A Map Of ARPANET, The Infant Internet

Random starburst embroidery? No, that’s a map of ARPANET, the early predecessor of the internet as we know it, from 1983. The late-in-life network was immortalised in yarn by the artist and designer Debbie Millman.


People Didn't Trust The Internet Before There Even Was One

Thanks to recent confirmation that your every online move is being monitored, trust in the internet seems like it’s at an all-time low. In fact, as we can see from an article published in 1973, we were acutely aware that the future of our interconnected world depended on confidence in the privacy and security of the network before it even existed.


A Map Of The Entire Internet, 1977

Once upon a time, you could draw a map of the known internet. Here’s what the world of networked computers looked like in 1977 when ARPANET was still just a huge government-funded science project. It’s actually incredible that the network proliferated this much in the eight years after the first four-node network was established back in 1969.


Happy 30th Birthday, Internet!

Oh, Internet. What can we say about such a loyal and knowledgable friend that has been with us for such a long time? What did we ever do before you were in our lives? Read books, I presume. Blerch. Anyway, it’s the 30th birthday of the internet we know and love today. INTERNET PARTY IN HERE!


Why Your Email Address Has An @ In It

Email is something many of us have only been using for the past 20 years, but its roots go back much, much further than that. The earliest traces of email even date back to the 1960s, and according to Wired, computer engineer Ray Tomlinson was responsible for many of email’s earliest innovations, including the use of @ in email addresses.


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