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Predicting Internet's Future; Celebrating Its Past

July 22, 2019
Futuristic Hallway; Daniel Chen - Unsplash

When ARPAnet’s founders began sending messages in 1969, they probably did not envision Pokemon Go or Grumpy Cat as part of their creation’s future.  So maintains Xconomy’s Wade Roush.

Written as part of a regular series in honor of the 50thanniversary of the first message sent over ARPAnet, Roush notes that just as it was difficult at best for the early tech pioneers to predict the first 50 years of the Internet, it would be equally difficult for anyone to try to predict what the next 50 years will bring. 

Considered the forerunner to the modern Internet, ARPAnet was an academic network funded by the U.S. military that established the basic transmission protocols still used today. 

“We pundits know in our hearts that we can’t speak with much authority about how the Internet will work, what its impact might be, or even whether it will still exist in the year 2069,” he writes. “But we understand that the Internet and its expanding cloud of endpoints, especially our 2.5 billion smartphones, are the most important inventions of the last half-century, and that they will continue to alter the tenor of our lives.”