Friday, October 30, 2009

40th Anniversary of the First Internet Message

Yesterday, October 29th, 2009 was the 40th anniversary of the first message sent on the Internet.

The two letter sent were "lo"  as in "lo and behold", but they were trying to get "login".

As CNN reported when speaking with Leonard Kleinrock:

"But there was no other computer to talk to. So a month later, Stanford Research Institute received its interface message processor, or IMP, connected it to their host computer, and we created the first piece of the backbone network when a 50-kilobit-per-second line was connected between UCLA and SRI.

What we wanted to do was send a message essentially from UCLA to SRI's host. And frankly, all we wanted to do was log in -- to type an l-o-g, and the remote time-sharing system knows what you're trying to do."

The systems crashed after the second letter was sent.  Leonard Kleinrock of UCLA sent the message from UCLA to Stanford Research Institute (SRI).  The two letters traveled about 400 miles.

As National Geograpic reports, "Packet-switching was the original transmission mechanism [for our network] in 1969 and is still the underlying technology of the Internet today," said Kleinrock.

Here is a great picture of the Interface Message Processor (IMP) that sent the first message.

Checkout this cool video on the start of the Internet. It also shows the last video game I played from beginning to end - Pong :-)

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