The Internet. One of the biggest leaps forward in mankind, allowing almost unfettered access to any type of information allowable. The internet allows people thousands of miles away from each other to connect and share ideas. Its impact is immeasurable, yet many people don’t actually know how the internet works.
The internet is a global system of connected devices that use the Internet Protocol Suite, or TCP/IP, to link devices. The internet was born out of a DARPA research project, called ARPANET, to connect military networks. The overreaching definitions of the two principal name spaces in the Internet, the Internet Protocol address (IP address) space and the Domain Name System (DNS), are directed by a maintainer organization, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). Otherwise, each regional group has its own set of policies for the internet.
Thats a Lot of Words, What Happens When I Go To A Website?
That was a lot of internet jargon, but the process itself its pretty simple when abstracted. Note that what follows is heavily simplified, behind the scenes is a large multitude of complex processes that do the grunt work. When you type a link into your browser (URL), such as google.com, your computer will convert that URL into a network address through a process known as DHCP address lookup. That network address is a complex string of numbers, such as 188.8.131.52 (iplocation.net). Your computer will run what is called a “get” request on that ip using a system called HTTP. From the ip, your computer will download code that your browser renders into a website onto your device. All this happens in less than a second, depending on your internet speed.
Although it already sounds incredibly complicated, there are tons of other technologies the internet is built off of to allow this to work. If you want to read more, I recommend this article on the internet.