50 years after ARPANET, the Internet now runs everything
by Paul Davenport Paul Davenport on

At 10:30 PM on October 29, 1969, UCLA professor Leonard Kleinrock and his student Charley Kline established an ARPANET link – the first one ever – between their campus and the office of Bill Duval, a programmer at Stanford University.

And thus, the seeds of what would become the Internet we know today were planted. And 50 years later, the repercussions have been monumental, to say the least.

50 years after ARPANET, the Internet now runs everything

Internet connectivity has fueled its own revolution of industry, has redefined the meaning of “things,” and is even the platform where global politics plays out in real time. Listing the repercussions of the first ARPANET link would be futile, as it’s nearly impossible to think of a way the Internet hasn’t reshaped the world as we knew it (and at a rate of change that historically might’ve taken centuries, not decades). But things really took off in the late 90s when companies like Google joined the ranks of Xerox and became a verb (and, consequently, physical products and services like Xerox started becoming obsolete).

“The internet has changed our ideas of time and space and distance,” Genevieve Bell, a Senior Fellow at Intel Corp. and director of the Autonomy, Agency and Assurance Institute at the Australian National University, told Network World. “The internet can instantly tell us who was president in 1969, and what hours the new restaurant in town is open. We can watch a rover moving around on Mars. I can keep track of my friends in America from Australia.”

For businesses, the impacts of Internet connectivity have been percolating for some time – from unified communications tools that connect teams across the Globe in real time, to the gradual rise of entirely “Internet-first” businesses. But things are only getting started, it seems, as Cisco predicts that Global IP traffic will have experienced a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 26 percent from 2017 to 2022, and Monthly IP traffic will reach 50 GB per capita by 2022, up from 16 GB per capita in 2017.

Today’s core Internet runs at sustained rates over 100 million times faster than that first 768 kbps connection. To keep up with that incredible amount of speed improvement, the average Garden Snail would have to travel at over 2.9 million miles per hour. And yet, we all still want the Internet to go faster and work better. - Matt Stevens, AppNeta CEO.

That is a LOT of traffic for teams tasked with managing and monitoring enterprise connectivity. And for all the good that the Internet brings, it’s also introduced a bevy of societal ills and security concerns that have made the IT department a critical component of every business (and whose marching orders seem to be growing by the day).

This calls for monitoring and management solutions that are designed to keep pace with the rapid growth of internet traffic in the coming years to ensure their business benefits from all that performant connectivity has to offer.


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Filed Under: Industry Insights

Tags: network management , networking , network , IoT , internet of things , industry 4.0 , cloud , network performance monitoring , connectivity , arpanet , internet