1969: ARPANET (Advanced Research Projects Agency Net) commissioned by U.S. Department of Defense for research into networking.
1970: First publication of original ARPANET host-to-host protocol; first cross-country link installed by AT&T between UCLA and Bolt Beranek and Newman Inc. (BBN) at 56kbps.
1971: Ray Tomlinson of BBN invents e-mail program to send messages across a distributed network.
1972: Ray Tomlinson modifies e-mail program for ARPANET where it becomes a quick hit; the ``@'' sign was chosen for its ``at'' meaning;
Larry Roberts writes first e-mail management program to list, selectively read, file, forward and respond to messages; first computer-to-computer chat takes place.
1973: First international connections to the ARPANET.
1975: John Vittal develops MSG, the first all-inclusive e-mail program providing replying, forwarding and filing capabilities.
1976: Elizabeth II, Queen of England, sends out an e-mail on March 26 from the Royal Signals and Radar Establishment (RSRE) in Malvern.
1984: Domain name system (DNS) is established and introduced; the number of hosts breaks 1,000.
1985: Symbolics.com becomes the first registered domain. Other firsts: cmu.edu, purdue.edu, rice.edu, berkeley.edu, ucla.edu, rutgers.edu, bbn.com, mit.edu, think.com.
1987: The concept for a national U.S. research and education network is proposed by Gordon Bell and others, in response to a congressional request by Congressman Al Gore. It was four years until the establishment of this network by Congress; number of hosts breaks 10,000.
1990: ARPANET ceases to exist.
1992: Number of hosts breaks 1 million; the phrase ``surfing the Internet'' is coined by Jean Armour Polly.
1993: White House goes on-line.
1994: E-commerce is born; shopping malls arrive on the Internet; the first banner advertisements appear on the Web.
1995: First mention of the Web in Tire Business states: ``Goodyear can be accessed by typing `[email protected]' in the Internet's World Wide Web. Goodyear opened an outlet on CompuServe's Electronic Mall in December.''
2001: Number of hosts: 109,574,429.
Source: Hobbes' Internet Timeline; www.zakon.org