From its humble beginning as ARPANET in 1969, to its massive breakthroughs (IRC – 1988, World Wide Web – 1991, YouTube – 2006, etc.), the internet has taken by storm the technological scene. Over the years, it has grown into a virtual space of information and communication by providing great amounts of diversified information on one side, and connecting people across the world on the other. Nowadays, it represents another dimension of humankind – a new digital identity.
What I find particularly intriguing about the history of the internet is launching of the Project Gutenberg, in 1971. Michael Hart was smart enough to understand that the storage, retrieval and searching of information on the internet’s limitless database is critical. By manually typing the “Declaration of Independence” he initiated the project further setting the stage for the modern eBooks and a ‘new reading era’.
And here we are 45 years later, starring at our blue-light screens, reading ‘Misunderstanding the internet’ on our laptops and thinking about eating pizza. Just kidding! In fact, we are thinking how the internet succeeded into converting the piles of dusty books forgotten in the libraries, in an electronic format available to everyone. The possibility of carrying an extensive digital library in one’s pocket is an unexpected gift from the internet. Nowadays, a book is within a click away and can be read no matter the borders. Long live the eBook and the internet!