strips of light

The Internet has transformed the world. Period. I think it's important then to help everyone understand what it is exactly. I'm not talking degree-level understanding of computer networking, but a feel for the kind of thing going on 'under the hood'.

This post explains the new numbering system for the Internet – fundamental for the continued health and prosperity of the Internet this century – and does so without the reader needing any prior technical understanding. There's an executive summary if you only have two minutes. And then more detail if you fancy. It describes what your organization needs to be doing and why.

Most of the post is based on a document I wrote under the auspices of the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).

So let's get stuck in. Firstly, allow me to differentiate between two terms too often and erroneously used interchangeably.

The Internet and the World Wide Web are different things

The Internet emerged in the concluding months of the 1960s. The World Wide Web on the other hand, like many other protocols, 'runs' on top of the Internet, and first twinkled in the eye of Sir Tim Berners-Lee in 1989. Read more