Since the latter part of the 20th Century, computers and their associated technology have taken over our lives, in so many ways.
There are few jobs these days that require little or no input fom this technology. Barcoding in Supermarkets has enabled efficient management of stock, computer designed data bases hold a myriad of information and even our health care records in the UK, will soon be computerised.
One of the most exciting and, yet, perhaps worrying aspects of computer technology, is the Internet.
This world wide connection of computers has opened many new technological doors.
Smaller networks of mutiple computers link up to form the World Wide Web, www.
It would seem that a form of the Internet was around in the fifties. In 1957, as the Soviet Union began it space exploration, an early form of the Internet was used. Various changes took place over the years and America used similar technology.
The Internet, as it is used today, seems to stem back to around 1983. This does however mean that the Internet, although not in its infancy, is not yet fully developed.
Using a standard Internet Protocol, or IP, these computers can transmit data around the world in a flash. One of the most interesting aspects of the Internet is its easy accessibility to all. With a suitable ISP, internet service provider, anyone can access and utilise the Internet.
These days people of all nationalites, both sexes and various age groups, access the Internet on a daily basis. The Internet is used as:-
- A means to earn some money
- For research
- To compare prices
- For entertainment in the form of games or music, for example.
- To watch Television Programmes
- To watch films
- To down load films and music
- To chat online
- To make virtual friends
- For criminal activities
- Blogging, which is keeping an online diary or log.
And so much more.........................
What we must never forget about the Internet though, is that currently it is not policed. This is as it should be, however, this can lead to various problems.
People and businesses are not always who or what they claim to be. The Internet has far too much pornography and too many scammers. Scamming is a form of online crime, in that it can cause havoc with computer systems.
Internet users need to protect their identities and personal information, as this is a precious commodity these days. With just a handful of a person's personal details, Internet thieves can run up huge amounts of debt in your name. This could blacken your credit score for many years and worse.
As hackers become even more clevern new bugs and viruses are active on the Interent. This has led to a growth in at least one industry, The one that provides good anti-virus software for your computer.
Finallyn although the Internet is a wonderful resourcen the user must remember that, on the whole, it is not regulated. Information stored on the Internet is sometimes out of date, inaccurate or simply false. Although this is possible with the written word, on the whole libraries store more accurate information than the Interent.
However, most libraries will be unable to store and share the amount and diversity of information that the Internet can.
With email messaging helping people around the world stay in touch cheaply, quickly and constantly the Internet provides a useful service. As it progresses this service will adapt and improve but one thing is for sure, it is here to stay.