The Internet Essay, Research Paper
A life changing experience
Grolier Encyclopedia states that The initial design of the Internet came in 1969, a project named (ARPA) Advanced Research Project Agency (Internet). The Pentagon is the one who set abroad the project to build a network that could withstand a nuclear attack and still function as a network. There are allot of other factors that influence network’s performance, like power outages, equipment failure, and the amount of traffic over the telecommunication lines. These factors made other organizations apart from the military interested in making a more reliable network. Local Area Networks LAN started In the 1980 s they surfaced in colleges, businesses, and corporations all around the world. It did not take long before the administrators of these small networks realized the power and usefulness of the LAN s, so they began to link them to other networks. The Internet has changed our lives forever, making us more productive, and helping us communicate more efficient.
In the late 1980s the National Science Foundation (NSF) built its network consisting of five supercomputer centers. This would allow other people besides the military entrance to these powerful networks. These networks are being used for purposes such as electronic mail, and news groups for people to exchange messages about related topics. Business learned quickly, that using electronic mail saved them postage and telephone expenses. This saving was enough to make business start implementing their network.
The Internet has many possibilities, such as advertising, sales, and other marketing benefits. Allot of different ideas have emerged from the Internet to help get small businesses going, and growing. There has been some mixed feeling about the Internet and it s advertising potential. I think it has more potential than anyone can imagine, I personally have found items and shopped through the Internet. In the next 5 years the Internet will probably change considerably for the better. The security issues will not totally be resolved, but it will be safer and more reliable in the years to come. The Internet is by far the best communication tool on the planet, and it s only going to get better. More and more people are able to access the Internet every day, just think if everyone had the opportunity to get on the net how efficient we could communicate. The only thing that is holding us back now it the traffic on the phone lines, and they are working on that now. The cable company is implementing cable modems that are very fast and reliable. The phone company offers ISDN, a digital phone line that’s a good high speed connection. Both of these are steps in the right direction.
The Internet is making it easier for us to do things from our home. There was a time when you had to go out and shop for everything, in crowded malls or in numerous shop s that did not have what you wanted. The Internet has made it a little easier for you to shop right in your home, so you do not have to fight those crowds or go on a wild goose chase around town. The computer has allot of other uses in the home like financing, banking, and entertainment. The Internet has allowed many people the ability to buy and trade stocks with just a few mouse clicks. The banking industry has used the Internet s efficiency for our benefit. We are able to pay bills and download our up to date statements right from the convenience of our home. We cannot forget the most important use the computer has at home, entertainment of course this is my particular experience. There are numerous entertainment programs like chat rooms, games, and interactive web pages that make you feel as if you are actually there. Krol states that Whatever the sophistication, Internet users are, as a whole, looking for one thing: information (2). So whatever you use the Internet for games, banking, financing It all amounts to the one thing we are looking for information.
Another important effect the Internet has had is in the educational field. Schools have put together small networks in the classroom to help the student become aquatinted with the computer, and to keep their attention. This is a good idea because as children get older they will not be afraid to use a computer, like some of the older people that did not grow up with computers. I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to use computers since I was in the 6th. The only downside is that we depend on them too much for our school work, If my computer was to go down today I would be in a world of trouble. I think the greatest program around today is the encyclopedia on CD ROM, just think how much space you save compared to 30 or more books. It s also a great information resource, and if you do not have an encyclopedia at home, you can access one through the Internet free of charge. The word processor is another great tool for educational purposes it has helped me in many ways. Using a typewriter Is frustrating, and a waste of time, a word processor makes so much more sense. The Internet and the computer are definitely the educational tool of today and tomorrow. The business world has been changed by the Internet in many ways. The biggest change is communication. Businesses can communicate with other business all around the world, using chat rooms or high tech video conferencing. This in turn helps them to be more profitable by saving time in decision making and the closing of business deals.
Grolier Encyclopedia defines alienation as A state of estrangement of the individual from the natural environment, social life, or the self (Alienation). The natural environment specified by Grolier is the interaction between humans. This is begin influenced by the Internet and other types of computer equipment. The example I gave about shopping online is alienating us from the interaction of sales people and other people shopping. The ATM machine is alienating us from bank tellers. When you go to the gas station to fill up your tank, you do not have to leave the pump to pay for your gas. Does this mean that one day we will not need sales people, bank tellers, or gas attendants. It s hard to say but for now we definitely do not need as many service people as we did in the past.
There are pro s and con s to just about everything, and the Internet and computer are no exception. The pro s to all of this is that we can do the things that we need to do more efficiently. We can get our shopping done quicker and with less hassle. The ATM makes it easier to get money without having to wait in long lines, and filling out withdrawal slips every time you need cash. At the gas station the pay at the pump method is much quicker and eliminates the wait in line completely. We can communicate much more efficiently and more often than ever before with the Internet. The downside to all of this is the lack of interaction with other people. Our job security is a concern, these machines that are linked together make our lives easier, but will they take our place as workers. Allot of them already have taken our jobs, for example look at the automotive industry they have robots building the cars for them at a faster and more accurate rate. The communication aspect of the Internet is good, but it takes away that face to face contact we are so used to. We will always need humans to do certain task but the computer is wedging its way beside us more and more each day.
Where does mankind fit into this alien world that we have created. I think at one time we will be effected in one way or another by the Internet and computers in general. It helps us in more ways than it hurts us, but we need to be more aware of the long term affects it has on us. As Rheingold stated Because of it s potential to change us as humans, as communities, as democracies, we need to try to understand the nature of CMC, cyberspace, and virtual communities in every important context-politically, economically, socially, cognitively (15). The Internet has the potential to improve our lives considerably, our lives at home, school, work, and day to day interactions. The Internet is a life changing experience.