Advanced Research Projects Agency Network

The precursor to the Internet, it was a network developed in the late 1960's and early 1970's by the U.S. Department of Defense. As an experiment in wide area networking (WAN), ARPANet was developed with the goal of being robust enough to survive a nuclear war. Part of the experiment was to study how distributed, noncentralized networks work.

Historical perspective: Robert E. Kahn was responsible for the design and development of the ARPAnet at Bolt Beranek and Newman in the late 1960s and he coined the oined the term "information infrastructure." . In 1972, he moved to Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the former name of the Advanced Research Projects Agency, and later became director of Information Processing Techniques Office of the DARPA. It was Kahn who initiated the billion-dollar Strategic Computing Program, the largest computer research and development program the U.S. government has ever undertaken. Many of the projects funded by agencies like the Office of Naval Research derived their support from funds allocated by this program.

In 1986, Kahn started the Corporation for National Research Initiatives with Vinton Cerf, a nonprofit organization engaged in the design, research and development of an experimental information infrastructure. Kahn developed with Cerf a set of technical standards, called protocols, that multiple networks could use, which paved the way for the Internet. It was a common language spoken by computers throughout the Internet. The first work on that language came from literally sketching the idea out on the back of an envelope in a San Francisco hotel in 1973 while Cerf and Kahn attended a computer conference.

NetLingo Classification: Net Technology

See more information about this term