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Who Are The Original Internet Pioneers

Who are the unsung heroes?

   
10:51 am on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Much can be said about Tim Berners-Lee but who are the real pioneers.

We can connect the 'internet' with the second world war or before.

Let's have a Roll of Honour for those who go with little or no mention.

For example, it is fair to say that the late Cori Rudl was a marketing pioneer.

J.C.R. Licklider played a part in the 1960's whilst developing 'real time interactive computing'

Hopefully this gets the ball Rolling!

10:54 am on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



You can't leave out the inventor of core memory, a fundamental advancement to the computer-age in the late 40's, J.W. Forrester.
11:12 am on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Yep, he's certainly got a claim to fame!
12:16 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Vannevar Bush - the guy who envisaged the web and hypertext before others implemented it.

Regards...jmcc

4:01 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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He certainly was one of the early veterens but I thought Ted Nelson was credited with the Hypertext, I'm probably wrong!
4:08 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I thought Al Gore gets all the credit for inventing the Internet?
4:42 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I kmow it is true that Ena Sharples got all the credit for the hair net.

But thats off topic so just to correct myself I will mention Lawrence Roberts of MIT connected a computer in Massachusetts with another in California over dial-up telephone lines in 1965.

5:14 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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According to a CNN transcript of an interview with Wolf Blitzer, Al Gore said;

"During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."

The truth is that Al Gore was't in Congress in 1969 when ARPANET started nor in 1974 when the term Internet first came into use.

Al Gore was elected to Congress in 1976.

6:26 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Academically speaking, Vint Cerf, Bob Kahn, Leonard Kleinrock, and Lawrence Roberts are the acknowledged "founding fathers".

There's a timeline here
[isoc-la.org...]

7:42 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Desmond Sargent :)

The British inventor of the hyper-link in 1975 ..

He was paid the pricely sum of £1 by BT for his trouble ...

But if the true spirit of pioneer can be labeled at any one it must be him..

8:10 pm on Dec 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A whole quid?

You've got to give it to British Telecom for their fairness and generosity.

3:36 pm on Dec 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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According to a CNN transcript of an interview with Wolf Blitzer, Al Gore said;

"During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."

A lot of internet pioneers have written about Al Gore's role in assisting the develpment of the internet. See, for example, [citypaper.com...] specifically the paragraph that states

In recent months, a lot of the Internet's heavy hitters have been becoming to the veep's defense... Vincent Cerf and Robert Kahn, two info-tech pioneers who helped design many of the Internet's protocols, also jumped into the fray. In an e-mail sent to numerous lists... they say Gore deserved significant credit for understanding "the value of high-speed computing and communication and for his long-term and consistent articulation of the potential value of the Internet to American citizens."

Vince Cerf's defence of Gore has been repeated so many times, in fact, I'm surprised there's anyone left involved in the industry who hasn't already heard of it. It's at least four years since I had my knuckles publicly rapped in another forum for not being aware of this.

8:31 pm on Dec 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member essex_boy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Jason Creighton for keeping the first ISP's profitable.
10:51 pm on Dec 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ergophobe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Can someone who invented core memory be an *internet* pioneer? Wouldn't that we a little like saying the guy who iron smelting was an automotive pioneer? I'm not in any way trying to detract from the contribution. Quite the opposite, I think that such a fundamental contribution to computing is magnificent. I just think that the internet pioneers should be considered those who built networking, information exchange systems and protocols not, say, the mouse and GUI interfaces in general, since those were not intended as internet applications and they go far beyond that.

Also, I can't believe the Al Gore thing keeps coming up. Newt Gingrinch of all people said Gore took the lead in promoting the internet in Congress, which is all that Gore ever claimed. The "Gore invented the internet" thing was the result of misquotation and massive spin by people hostile to Gore to make him look foolish. Gore might, in fact, be an unsung hero because his actual legislative role in pushing things along has been obscured by the politically motivated attacks on him.

12:49 am on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Actually the £1 had to be paid in order to fall under the guidelines of US patent, where money needs to trade hands £1 being the minimum allowed...
1:54 am on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Vannevar Bush's essays "As we may think" from the 1940s is certainly a primary source. Ted Nelson did indeed coin the term "hypertext," which was fully developed in his book _Literary Machines_ circa 1973. (His notion of roadside stands where people could stop to look things up on the net is so close to today's Internet cafes that it's almost creepy.)
2:03 am on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)



anchor & doctor,

Al Gore said,

"I've traveled to every part of this country during the last six years. During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet. I took the initiative in moving forward a whole range of initiatives that have proven to be important to our country's economic growth and environmental protection, improvements in our educational system."

He was referring to the High Performance Computing Act of 1991 which he sponsored. Goals of this act encompass:

"(1) setting goals and priorities for Federal high-performance computing research, development, and networking; (2) providing for interagency coordination; (3) providing for oversight of the operation and evolution of the National Research and Education Network provided for in this Act; (4) improving software; (5) acceleration of high-performance computer system development; (6) technical support and research and development of software and hardware needed to address fundamental problems in science and engineering (Grand Challenges); (7) educating undergraduate and graduate students; and (8) providing for security."

Hope that this clears up any misconceptions you may have...

2:18 am on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A prediction made in 1936:

...
A mechanism of world inter-communication will be devised, embracing the whole planet, freed from national hindrances and restrictions, and functioning with marvellous swiftness and perfect regularity.
...
Shoghi.
Haifa, Palestine,
March 11, 1936.

Author: Shoghi Effendi Source: US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1991 first pocket-size edition Pages: 206
11:18 am on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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<snip>

[edited by: trillianjedi at 1:32 pm (utc) on Dec. 5, 2005]
[edit reason] See sticky [/edit]

1:19 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Can someone who invented core memory be an *internet* pioneer? Wouldn't that we a little like saying the guy who iron smelting was an automotive pioneer?

Yes, I think that's probably fair comment. I just like to shout his name from the rooftops every opportunity I get as he doesn't get much credit for anything these days, and he's my hero ;-)

Moderators priviledge hehe

I just think that the internet pioneers should be considered those who built networking, information exchange systems and protocols not, say, the mouse and GUI interfaces in general, since those were not intended as internet applications and they go far beyond that.

Yes I agree.

Robert Metcalfe and Butler Lampson invented ethernet.

Van Jacobson wrote traceroute.

John Nagle invented the Nagle algorithm (surprisingly enough).

And what has now become the biggie really for consumer internet access, given the limited number of IP addresses available:-

Paul Francis invented NAT (Network Address Translation).

Bonus points for anyone that can tell me who invented UDP.

2:15 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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When you think about it, it all started back when someone decided to leave the trees and walk upright...
2:40 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Laurence A. Canter and Martha S. Siegel: first commercial Usenet spam.
3:12 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)



A guy later discredited for bubble behavior but who pioneered the GUI online (years before Berners-Lee) and who did much to popularize the entire online concept, Steve Case.

I can already hear the chorus of boo's from the back of the room, but how many of you guys were online in 1985?

6:33 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Another founder:

[en.wikipedia.org...]

11:06 pm on Dec 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I wonder how many real unsung heros there are. Not the fat cats that steal the credit and claim the fame, but the quiet low salaried modest genius that genuinely came up with the original ideas before the boss stole it.
9:45 am on Dec 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Really interesting stuff guys, I've just spent the past 20 mins reading more about some of these people - there have been some fantastic acheivements, and it's hard to think that the 'web' as we know it is only 15 years old.
9:48 am on Dec 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Suprised no-one's mentioned Vint Cerf:

[en.wikipedia.org...]

For more detailed information on the people behind the Internet there's a book called "Where Wizards Stay up Late" (or similar). FWIW it only mentions Al Gore once ;-).

12:40 pm on Dec 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Al Gore said; "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."

Al Gore wasn't in Congress in 1969 when ARPANET began nor in 1974 when the term 'Internet' was first used. In actual fact Al Gore was elected to Congress in 1976.

8:24 pm on Dec 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator coopster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member




...and massive spin by people hostile to Gore to make him look foolish

Aw, c'mon, that comes natural for him ;-)


w3 - Berners-Lee influences [w3.org]

11:00 am on Dec 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I think Al Gore 'creating the Internet' is like UPS creating the parcel, they are certainly involved in their movement, but that's it.
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