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Furthermore, they would design it to operate while in tatters. All the nodes in the network would be equal in status, each with its own authority to originate, pass and receive messages.The messages themselves would be divided into packets.ARPANET’s users had warped the computer-sharing network into a dedicated, high-speed, federally subsidized electronic postal service.The main traffic was not long-distance computing, but news and personal messages.And how would the network itself be commanded and controlled?Any central authority would be an obvious and immediate target for an enemy missile.The invention of the mailing list followed naturally.This was an ARPANET broadcasting technique in which an identical message could be sent automatically to large numbers of network subscribers.

If big pieces of the network had been blown away, that simply wouldn’t matter.Each packet would begin at some specified source node, and end at some other specified destination node.It would wind its way through the network on an individual basis.In fact, nobody really wanted to stop them from joining this branching complex of networks, which came to be known as “the Internet”.In 1984 the National Science Foundation got into the act.

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