History of Technology 6: The ARPANET

How did the ARPANET lead to the ice bucket challenge? And why didn't anyone nominate Shmoop to do the ice bucket challenge? We ask the important questions here at Shmoop.

LanguageEnglish Language
TechnologyHistory of Technology

Transcript

00:24

telephone system America had no efficient means of long-distance

00:27

communication a letter from DC to LA saying the Russians are coming the

00:33

Russians are coming probably wouldn't get there in time half the country would [mail man delivering letters]

00:37

have been eating borscht by the time the mailman showed up well that wouldn't

00:41

have been the worst thing in the world though borscht is pretty good well so

00:44

[military men marching down a road] being overtaken by a foreign power thing however really would have sucked

00:48

so in 1962 an MIT ARPA scientist named JCR Licklider came up with a crazy idea

00:55

to solve the problem to protect the u.s. from this potential threat Licklider

01:01

suggested we create a galactic network of computers that could communicate with

01:06

[alien frantically typing on keyboard] each other well galactic might have been a little

01:08

extreme but the powers that be thought the idea of a computer network was just

01:13

swell well this was just kind of network that government military leaders needed

01:17

to communicate with each other if the Soviets ever took down the phone system [Red envelopes bouncing off computers]

01:20

how else were they going to coordinate who was where and what to the ball and

01:24

obviously defend the country in case of attack all right Lickliders crazy

01:28

idea eventually became the ARPANET which was the warm-up act for our modern-day

01:34

internet of course the ARPANET idea had a big glaring problem if the Soviets [computers with big tomatos squished on the screens]

01:39

could take out the phones with a missile what was to stop them from

01:43

taking out the ARPANET well MIT came up with an answer to that

01:46

in 1965 and introduced the concept of packet switching sounds like a thing [a package exchanging hands]

01:52

spies in trench coats do on park benches but packet switching was actually a way

01:57

of breaking down data into blocks before zapping it off to you know wherever it's [a computer with little packages sent from it]

02:03

going well this let each little packet go its own direction as it travel and

02:07

wasn't until 1969 that the ARPANET sent its first message well this was done through

02:12

what's known as a node to node communication which connects one [two computers side by side]

02:16

computer to another oh yeah that's one computer to only one other computer

02:20

Sometimes we have to start small right both of these individual computers were

02:24

gigantic talking the size of a house like a little house but still a house [a house with two old computers either side]

02:28

there also weren't very far apart one was at a lab at Stanford and the other

02:32

was at UCLA meaning both we're in California tensions were high as the

02:36

UCLA lab started entering the short and sweet message log in oh what a glorious [three men in white coats in a lab]

02:42

moment well the internet was being born heavenly music was being played angels

02:47

were singing that is until the ARPANET work crashed after only transmitting the

02:51

first two letters okay okay it wasn't exactly the most auspicious of

02:56

[facebook symbols floating off the screen] beginnings but wasn't long before those angels were singing again and posting

03:00

pictures of themselves doing the ice bucket challenge on Facebook