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Chapter 3. The Internet and World Wide Web

Unit 2. The Internet and The World Wide Web
The Internet
The internet (capitalized as in Internet when it first came into widespread use) is
defined as a worldwide network connecting to a million of computers via dedicated routers and
servers. When computers are connected to the internet, end-users could start sending and
receiving different; types of information. These types of information can be sent and received
via electronic mails (emails), text or video chats and/or conferencing, and computer programs,
among others.
Now, most telephone companies all over the world also function as internet service
providers. In the Philippines, the PLDT, Inc. (formerly known as Philippine Long Distance
Telephone Company) is the largest network company; Smart Communications, Inc. and
Digital Mobile Philippines, Inc. (commercially known as Sun Cellular) are collaborating with
PLDT while Globe Telecom has acquired Bayan
Telecommunications (commonly known as BayanTel or Bayan). These
telecommunication companies use high-speed fiber-optic cables to transmit data. But no one
actually owns "the Internet." Large internet service providers own infrastructure through which
internet is delivered.
Today, according to the 2018 Global Digital suite of reports from We Are Social and
Hootsuite, there are more than 4 billion people anywhere in the world connecting to the internet
for various reasons. Some of the uses are illustrated in Figure 3.1.
Figure 3.1 The many uses of the internet
The Internet: Then and Now
Even though today's internet bears little resemblance to its forebear of almost 50 years
ago, it still functions in basically the same way. The internet has evolved into something
different from the special-purpose, restricted-use network its planners originally envisioned it
to be (Norton, 2012).
The Internet started from the Advanced Research Projects Agency's Wide Area
Network which is called the ARPANET. This was established by the U.S. Department of
Defense in the 1960s so that the military's research unit could collaborate or partner with
business and government laboratories.
Figure 3.2 Before it became known as the Internet, ARPA's network served universities,
defense contractors, and a few government agencies.
Source: https://www.timetoast.com/timelines/computer-history-timeline--67
Afterwards, other universities and U.S. institutions were connected to ARPANET that
resulted in the growth of ARPANET different from everyone's expectations. ARPANET then
attained the name of "Internet."
The advancement of hypertext-based technology known as World Wide Web, WWW,
or just simply as the Web has provided the channels for displaying text, graphics, animations,
etc. Its other features of enabling easy search and offering navigation tool prompted the
internet's unpredictable worldwide growth.
The Internet2 Environment: Future Empowerment
Internet2 is a not-for-profit networking consortium founded in 1996 by 34 university
research institutions in the U.S. It provides a collaborative environment where U.S. research
and education organizations work together and develop advanced technologies and
innovative solutions such as telemedicine, digital libraries, and virtual laboratories to assist
education, research, and community development.
Internet2 manages the Internet2 Network, a next-generation optical and internet
protocol network that is capable of delivering enhanced network services and is better, faster,
and more efficient than the typical internet or broadband connections. Internet2 maintains a
secure network testing and research environment. It began operating the Internet2 DCN
(dynamic circuit network), an advanced technology that allows user-based allocation of data
circuits over the fiber-optic network.
As of May 2016, this community comprises 317 U.S. higher education institutions, 81
corporations, 64 affiliates and affiliate members, 43 regional and state education networks,
and more than 65 national research and education networking partners representing over 100
The Philippines, via the Philippine Research, Education and Government Information
Network (PREGINET), is among the international peers reachable via Trans-Eurasia
Information Network (TEIN), one of the Internet2's peering relationships. Just in August 2017,
a national training course on nuclear neurology was held in which nationwide webcast among
hospitals was made possible through the high-speed connectivity provided by PREGINET and
the video conference server hosted locally at the Department of Science and Technology-
Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI). By supporting telemedicine or
telehealth in the country, this information infrastructure, therefore, enables Philippine hospitals
to keep abreast of new medical diagnostics and world-class treatment options without having
to travel abroad.
Internet Today: Still Growing
Today, the internet connects thousands of networks and billions of users around the
world. The number of internet users as of January 2018 is 4.021 billion which means that more
than half of the world's population is now online as revealed by We Are Social and Hootsuite
in their 2018 Global Digital suite of reports. Despite this huge number, the internet has no
central ownership It means that no single person or group controls the network Although there
are several organizations (such as The Internet Society and the World Wide Web Consortium)
that propose standards for internet-related technologies and guidelines for its appropriate use,
these organizations almost universally support the internet's openness and lack of centralized
As a result, the internet is open to anyone who can access it. If one can use a computer
and if the computer is connected to the internet, he or she is free not only to use the resources
posted by others, but also to create resources of his or her own; that is, the internet user can
publish documents on the World Wide Web, exchange email messages with other users, and
perform many other tasks.
Figure 3.3. Electronic Mail. Group Chat using Mobile
Jobs the Internet Can Do
Internet users may wonder about the jobs that the internet can do. However, there is
only one simple job that the internet does, and it is to move, transfer, or assign a computerized
information from one place to another. This information can be in the form of text documents,
images, audio, video, and software programs, among others. All this information is known as
data. The internet can handle different kinds of information and assist people to perform
various jobs from the simple tasks of handling of email, searching on websites, and sending
chat messages to the more sophisticated function of creating websites and programming
possible through various software programs.
How Data Travels the Internet
Data and information are transferred around the world through wired or wireless
transmission media. In the Philippines, the transmission media that make up the internet
backbone allow information or data exchanges between networks at several locations across
the country, such as La Union in the northern part, and Batangas, Cavite, and Davao down
south. The high speed equipment in these sites functions similarly to a highway interchange.
Data is transferred from one network to another until it reaches its final destination (see Figure
Much of internet runs on the ordinary public telephone network. However, there is a
big difference between how a telephone call works and how the internet carries data. For
example, friend A gives friend B a telephone call; the telephone then opens a direct connection
(also known as the circuit) between friend A's home and friend B's home. In this scenario, a
direct line can be pictured out, running along miles of cable, from friend A's telephone to friend
B's telephone. As long as the two friends are over the telephone, that connection or circuit
stays open between the two telephones. This method of linking the telephones together is
called circuit switching.
Figure 3.4. How data is sent through the internet
Circuit switching is one of the most common schemes utilized to build a
communications network, such as the case of ordinary telephone calls. Circuit switching,
however, is inefficient because if you stay connected with your friend or relative over the phone
all the time, the circuit is still connected, and is, therefore, blocking other people from using it.
A traditional dial-up connection to the net, in which a computer dials a telephone number to
reach the internet service provider, uses circuit switching. This appears inefficient because
browsing the internet and using the telephone at the same time are not possible.
As time goes by, technologies are improved and developed as well. Most data that
move over the internet in an entirely different way is called packet switching. This is a mode
of transmission in which the message is broken into smaller parts (called packets) which are
sent independently, and then reassemble at the ultimate destination. Suppose an email from
the Philippines is sent to someone in South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, China, Italy, the U.S.
and other countries. Instead of having a knotty circuit between the home in the Philippines and
those in the mentioned countries, and sending the email in one go, the email is "broken" into
tiny pieces (happens at the back of the system). Theoretically, these packets are assigned
their ultimate destination. They travel via different routes, and when they reach their definitive
destination, these packets will then reassemble to make the email message one and complete.
Compared to circuit switching, packet switching, therefore, is much more efficient. A
permanent connection is not necessary between the two places communicating, which avoids
blocking the entire chunk of the network each time a message is sent.
The table below shows the differences between circuit switching and packet switching.
Switching Method
Circuit Switching
Packet Switching
It offers a dedicated
transmission channel
that is reserved until it
is disconnected.
Packets can be routed
around network
congestion. Packet
switching makes
efficient use of network
Key Features
Dedicated channels
can cause delays
because a channel is
unavailable until one
side disconnects. It
uses a dedicated
physical link between
the sending and
receiving devices.
It offers the capability
of storing messages
temporarily to reduce
network congestion.
Packets can get lost
while taking alternative
routes to the
destination. Messages
are divided into
packets that contain
source and destination
The two types of
packet switching are
datagram and virtual
circuit. Datagram
packets are
independently sent
and can take different
paths throughout the
network. Virtual circuit
uses a logical
connection between
the source and the
destination device.
Table 3.1. Comparison between Circuit Switching and Packet Switching
What Computers Do on the Internet
Computers do different jobs on the internet. Some computers work like electronic filing
cabinets that store information and send it when clients request so. These are called servers.
A server is a computer that is designed to process any requests for data and delivers data to
other client computers over a local network or the internet. A client is a computer or device
that gets information from a server. Any computer running with special software can function
as a server, and servers have different roles to play. A computer that holds the user accounts,
computer accounts, organizational units, and application services is called the Active
Directory Domain Services (ADDS). Another machine that helps the Dynamic Host
Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server is a server that configures IPv4 and IPv6 addresses
specifically in giving names to each IP address up to its root recognition which is called
domain name system (DNS) server. Another machine that holds and manages documents
is known as the file server while the other one that holds users' mail services and Web
services is referred to as Web Server II. A device that connects printers to client computers
through the internet is called a print server. It accepts print jobs from the computers, queues
these jobs, and sends them to the appropriate printers.
Besides clients and servers, the internet is made up of a hardware device designed to
receive, analyze, and send incoming packets to another network. This is called router. Having
several computer devices both at home and in school, you probably have a router that
connects all of your devices to the internet. The router can be compared to a simple mailbox
placed at the corner of a street and which represents your single point of entry to the worldwide
The World Wide Web
The World Wide Web (WWW) is referred to as the collection of public websites that
are connected to the internet worldwide, together with the client computers which include
personal computers, laptops, iPads, and cellular phones that access its content.
Web Technologies
The WWW is considered to be one of the applications in the internet and computer
networks. This is based on three fundamental technologies that are said to be part of the Www
Hypertext markup language (HTML) is a standard markup language used for
creating web pages. HTML is classified as the set of markup symbols or codes
appended in a file intended for presentation on a World Wide Web browser page.
Hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) is classified as the set of standards allowing
users of the World Wide Web to interchange information seen on web pages. Port 80
is the standard port for HTTP connections.
Web servers and web browsers - is a software application for recovering, presenting,
and navigating information resources on the World Wide Web. There are different
browser applications that are currently used in the WWW such as Microsoft Edge,
Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, and more.
The World Wide Web Today
Last March 12, 2017, WWW turned 28 years, a milestone that recalls the invention of
the WWW which has changed humanity forever, and developed a new virtual world within a
There are known websites that enhanced their features t terms of design and
development style to adapt to the speedily growing techniques of the users' way of retrieving
the Web from large screen computers to small-screen mobile phones.
It is observed and shown that the way the Web works is reasonably simple having its
four basic stages: connection, request response, and close. The first stage is where many
users access the browsers such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox
(some of the most used browsers) to connect to the Web server. Browsers work by using a
unique protocol known as the HTTP which demands a particular programmed text from the
web server. The text is actually written in HTML format that informs the browser on how it will
display the text on the user's screen. Different technical terms are used in explaining how the
Web works. One of the most important terms to know is the uniform resource locators (URLs)
which is sorted as the internet address, A URL contains four parts, namely the protocol
identifier which indicates the protocol to use, the domain name which specifies the IP address
where the resource is located, the path, and the file name (Mitchell, 2017).
According to W3Counter, a free unit counter that offers website analytics, Chrome is
the most used web browser with (60.6% share) as of March 2018. Among other web browsers
in the list are Safari (15.4%), Internet Explorer and Edge (7.6%), Firefox (7.2%), and Opera
Searching for Information on the Web
A website is maintained by its owner, called a web administrator. The owner can
modify the website content as well as add new information in it. However, no single
organization controls additions, deletions, and changes to all websites. This means there is
no single repository for all the websites found on the internet. Several companies, however,
maintain organized directories of websites to help people find information about specific topics
(Shelly, Cashma, & Vermaat, 2011).
There are two mainly managed search tools that people use in locating information on
the web; subject directories and search engines. Subject directories are developed and
maintained by human editors and not by electronic spiders or robots that are used to fetch
web pages automatically. A search engine, on the other hand, uses small programs called
spiders or bots (like Googlebot, Yahoo Slurp, and MSNbot) that polish the internet, follow links,
and return information to the search engine's indicator.
If you enter a phrase with spaces between the words in the search text, most search
engines return links to pages that include all of the words. There are several techniques that
can be used to improve web searches such as:
Using specific words and placing the most important terms first in the search text or
Using quotation marks to create exact phrases-this helps the search engine find what
it is looking for by using the exact sequence of words
Listing all possible spellings, for example, organization and organisation
In addition to searching for web pages, many search engines allow searching for images,
news articles, and various reports in different formats.
One of the most popular search engines now is Google. Below is an overview of some of
the most useful Google search tricks released in 2016, from basic tips to new features.
1. Use quotes to search for an exact phrase - By typing in double-quotes (") at the start and
end for a certain word or phrase, Google will provide the exact word or phrasing you need.
2. Use an asterisk within quotes to specify unknown or variable words - the asterisk
symbol (*) will provide possibilities. It is helpful, for example, if you are trying to determine a
song from its lyrics, but you forgot some of the words or if you are trying to complete a
sentence, but could not remember what it was.
3. Use the minus sign to eliminate results containing certain words - While the asterisk
gives you possibilities, the minus sign (-) eliminates results of certain words. Just type the
minus sign prior to the word you do not want to include in the search.
4. Search websites for keywords - You can specify certain content, format, or files you want
Google search to provide. For instance, if you want to specifically search for PDF files
regarding a certain topic, simply type the keyword PDF followed by a colon symbol (:) and the
topic you are searching for.
5. Compare using "vs" - By using the "vs" or "versus" between two words you want to
compare, Google will provide an in-depth analysis of the two words, such as pointing out
similarities and differences.
6. Use "DEFINE:" to search for the meaning of words slang included - The "DEFINE:" keyword
provides a dictionary definition of a word. Also, you will be able to see etymology and a graph
of its use over time.
7. Search images using images - Using your mobile device's camera, you can search for
images online by going to Google Images, activating your camera phone and taking a picture
of the image you are searching for. Google will provide you with similar images on the web.