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How the World Wide Web Has Changed in the Last 10 Years

April 1, 2011

I remember one of the very first commercials to advertise the “World Wide Web.” I remember thinking that whatever this was, it was going to be amazing and I couldn’t wait for it to come out.   If you sit back and think about it, those first internet commercials were catching our attention and eliminating our imaginations not more than 10 to 15 years ago. And here we are today, carrying the ‘World Wide Web’ around in our pockets. Amazing!


Remember when you had to fully type in a domain name, not forgetting about the ‘WWW’ part? Back when chat rooms were all the rage for the kids, the sound of “You’ve got mail” was music to our ears, and we paid for web use through our telephone connections. I remember sitting night after night on the ‘web’ chatting in online chat rooms about sports and popular culture, and downloading just one song at a time (and even that one song would take all day to download). Back in the beginning the web was all about connecting with the world.


Remember the movie “The Net” with Sandra Bullock, where movie watchers were terrified to find out that our personal information was on the internet for anyone to find? I remember sitting in the theater thinking that there was no way this could be real, and here we are today with identities stolen every second online.


So much about the internet has evolved over just the past ten years. My friends literally had to force me onto Facebook to share photos and gossip, and now I can’t imagine not checking my Facebook Feed every day. What began as a way to connect with the world and make readily available all sources of information and documents has grown to gargantuan portions. And yet, it’s still about connecting with people, places and ideas, although on a much larger scale.


Today there are over 629 million Facebook profiles, more than double the amount of people living in the U.S. A few years ago we would jump online first thing in the morning to check our emails, and we’d be off to work and on with our lives. Today we check our emails before we even roll out of bed in the morning, download 10 songs by the time we’re done brushing our teeth, update our Facebook Status to let everyone know we’re headed to work, check-in at our favorite coffee shop on our way to work, browse the web as we sit in traffic, work online all day in the office, look up dinner recipes and browse restaurant deals, and even as we lay our heads to sleep at night we take one last look at the web to make sure we haven’t missed anything.