It's a technical phenomenon that offers entertainment and information, and connects to people on the other side of the world. And more often than not, we take it completely for granted. But how does it work, and what does it actually look like? Here we dip into forty fascinating maps that show us exactly that.
Before the internet there was the Apranet... Come again? The forerunner to today's internet, the Apranet was a network of three research centres at the University of Utah. That was in 1969. In the following years the network spread out ever further, and started developing at breakneck speed. First it was only in the USA; but within the next 30 years it became the global network that we know today.
In the year 2000 more than half of the population the USA was online. First the network was only used in the world's richest countries, then it caught on in less well-off parts of the world too, before later reaching the poorest areas. Today, around 2.5 billion are online around the world. While there is still a digital divide, each year hundreds of millions of new internet users are getting online.
And together with RESET, you can help to bridge that digital divide.
To find out more about the development of the World Wide Web, and the physical geography of the online world, check out the whole set of 40 maps.