A few days ago, we all welcomed the New Year with a grand celebration filled with fireworks and parties. January 1st 2013 is very significant as it not only marks the beginning of another year but also, on this date, the Internet becomes three decades old. On 1 January 1983, the US ARPANET switched to TCP/IP protocol and paved the way for the Internet and the way it linked computers all around the world.
The arrival of TCP/IP-based ARPANET was commemorated by Google VP and Chief Internet Evangelist, Vint Cerf. Here’s an article from TechWeekEurope.
“A long time ago, my colleagues and I became part of a great adventure, teamed with a small band of scientists and technologists in the US and elsewhere,” wrote Cerf on a blog. “For me, it began in 1969, when the potential of packet switching communication was operationally tested in the grand ARPANET experiment by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).”
Cerf explained how previous networks were plagued by the fact that they each had own specific communication protocol.
“In an attempt to solve this, Robert Kahn and I developed a new computer communication protocol designed specifically to support connection among different packet-switched networks,” wrote Cerf. “We called it TCP, short for ‘Transmission Control Protocol’. Later, to better handle the transmission of real-time data, including voice, we split TCP into two parts, one of which we called ‘Internet Protocol,’ or IP for short. The two protocols combined were nicknamed TCP/IP.”
“When the day came, it’s fair to say the main emotion was relief,” state Cerf. “Yet, with hindsight, it’s obvious it was a momentous occasion. On that day, the operational Internet was born. TCP/IP went on to be embraced as an international standard, and now underpins the entire Internet.”
“I hope you’ll join me today in raising a toast to the Internet – may it continue to connect us for years to come,” concluded Cerf.
A Toast To Three Decades and Many More Re-Transmits, TCP/IP