Fall 2005

Online Timeline

By David Carlson
1962
United States

RELATED ARTICLES
"The News Media’s 30-Year Hibernation"
"Creating The Online Timeline"
- David Carlson
U.S. Air Force contracts with Rand Corp. to study computer networking for defense purposes.

1963
United States

Ted Nelson, an author and futurist, coins the word “hypertext.”

1967
United States

Development of Arpanet, forerunner of the Internet, begins with U.S. Defense Department funding.

1969
United States

Arpanet begins operation, connecting three universities in California and one in Utah.

1969
United States

EDITOR'S NOTE:
The Online Timeline from which this is adapted can be found at http://iml.jou.ufl.edu/carlson/timeline.shtml.
CompuServe Information Service launches in Columbus, Ohio, as a computer time-sharing service.

1970
United Kingdom

December 14: First mention of the concept behind teletext is made in a BBC internal memo.

1972
United States

The first e-mail program for Arpanet is created by Ray Tomlinson of BBN.

1972
United Kingdom

October 23: Ceefax is announced by the BBC, which outlines a series of tests to be conducted.

1972
United States

November: Atari is founded and ships Pong, the first commercial video game.

1973
Europe

First international connections to Arpanet are created in England and Norway.

1974
United Kingdom

The British Post Office’s Research Laboratory demonstrates “Viewdata,” the world’s first videotex system, later called Prestel.

1974
United States

First use of term “Internet” appears in a conference paper by Vinton Cerf and Bob Kahn.

1975
France

An ambitious project to update the telephone system is begun. Leads to creation of electronic phone book, mass-fax and videotex systems.

1975
United States

Bill Gates, 19, and Paul Allen, 22, start a software company in Gates’s dorm room at Harvard. It comes to be called Microsoft, and its first product is BASIC, a simple programming language.

1976
United Kingdom

First known e-mail from a head of state: Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom, sends a message via Prestel.


1976
United States

April 1: Steve Jobs and Mike Wozniak incorporate Apple Computer and introduce the Apple I. Cost: $666.66.

1980
United Kingdom

Prestel is now within a local phone call for 62 percent of the British population.

1980
United States

Miami: Viewtron, the videotex service created by Knight Ridder and AT&T, begins “concept trials” near Miami.

1980
France

Teletel, the videotex system now called Minitel, is publicly demonstrated.

1980
United Kingdom

The (Brighton) Argus, owned by Westminster Press, launches a Prestel service called Viewpress.

1980
Japan

The VCR is introduced by Matsushita. Within a year, 40,000 U.S. homes will have one.

1980
United States

July: The Columbus Dispatch in Ohio becomes the first newspaper to offer an electronic edition via CompuServe, which now has 3,600 total subscribers.

1980
United States

The Source is purchased for $6 million by Reader’s Digest. It has fewer than 5,000 subscribers.


1980
United States

Qube, the first two-way cable TV system, is started by Warner Amex in Columbus, Ohio. It closes in 1984.

1981
United Kingdom

An estimated 10,000 Prestel terminals are in use. The service boasts 500 information providers.

1981
United States

February 17: Time, Inc. announces it will develop and test a multichannel teletext service to be distributed via satellite, the first of its kind.

1981
France

March 26: Le Parisien Libere, a French newspaper, produces its first online edition on Teletel.

1981
United States

August: IBM introduces the P.C.. Based on the Intel 8088, it sells 50,000 units in the first eight months. Cost: $1,565 to $6,000.

1982
United States

Eleven U.S. newspapers begin daily transmission of “electronic versions” via CompuServe, which now has 10,000 subscribers.

1982
France

Major public trial of Teletel begins using 270,000 Minitel terminals distributed free of charge.

1982
United States

Gateway, the videotex trial conducted by Times-Mirror, operates between March 15 and December 31.

1982
Europe

EUnet (European UNIX Network) is created by EUUG to provide e-mail and USENET services.

1982
Canada

Project Grassroots opens in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

1982
Italy

Videotel, a videotex service, begins testing in the first quarter with 2,000 terminals.

1982
Netherlands

100,000 teletext TV sets are sold in the year ending in April—and are twice the price of regular TV’s.

1982
United States

StarText, the only early newspaper videotex system intended for display on computers, opens in Fort Worth, Texas.

1982
United States

Commodore Computer announces the Commodore 64. It has 64K of RAM, sound and color graphics when hooked to a color TV. Cost: $600.

1982
United States

Time magazine names no “Man of the Year.” Instead, the computer is dubbed “Machine of the Year.”

1983
United Kingdom

Prestel boasts over 200,000 users on 30,000 registered terminals. Its database contains 250,000 pages.


1983
France

The first smart card is introduced for commercial transactions via Minitel.

1983
Japan

Captain is introduced commercially late in the year. Trials have cost 20 billion yen.

1983
United States

Midyear: Keycom Electronic Publishing launches Keytran, a videotex service, in Chicago.

1983
France

Central Paris gets electronic phone book access. About 10,000 Minitel terminals are in use.

1983
United States

October 30: Viewtron launches commercially in Miami.

1983
Germany

Deutsch Telekom launches T-Online, its videotex system.

1983
United States

Internet Domain Name System is developed at the University of Wisconsin.

1983
United States

December: The largest U.S. online services are Dow Jones, with 90,000 users, CompuServe, 63,000, and The Source, 36,000 users.

1984
United States

CBS opens Extravision teletext system on various network affiliate stations.

1984
France

Minitel has about 1 million terminals in use.

1984
United States

January: Apple introduces the Macintosh. Cost: $2,495 with built-in B&W monitor. Within 75 days, 50,000 are sold.

1984
United States

March: CompuServe charges its users 13 cents per minute daytime and 10 cents at night. Dow Jones is $1.20 daytime and 20 cents at night.

1984
United States

IBM introduces the PC-AT, based on the 80286 Intel chip. Fully loaded with graphics, color monitor and 20MB hard disk, it costs $6,700.

1984
United States

November 1: Keytran, owned by Centel, Honeywell and Chicago Sun-Times, is renamed Keycom and launches commercial videotex service.

1985
Worldwide

Twenty-two nations are said to be involved in videotex and teletext. Eleven use Prestel, five use CEPT, two use NAPLPS, and four use French Antiope.

1985
United States

Videotex systems are planned in at least 20 major U.S. cities. Most are based on either Viewtron or Gateway technology, Editor & Publisher reports.

1985
United States

Whole Earth ‘Lectronic Link, The Well, is created by Stewart Brand in San Francisco.

1985
Asia

Asian countries using videotex or teletext include Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and New Zealand.

1985
United States

Quantum Computer Services, which goes on to create AppleLink, Q-Link, PC-Link and, finally, America Online, is founded in Vienna, Virginia.

1985
United States

IBM, Sears and CBS announce a partnership to create Trintex, eventually renamed Prodigy.

1985
United States

Viewtron goes national with a service for personal computers. Kits for early P.C.’s cost $9.95.

1985
United States

October 21: General Electric Co. announces the launch of GEnie, a dial-up information and entertainment system for P.C. users. Price: $35 an hour prime time; $5 an hour nights and weekends.

1985
Canada

The Hamilton (Ontario) Spectator starts up Compuspec, a mainframe-based BBS system.

1985
France

22 million callers use videotex services in December.

1985
United States

Microsoft ships Windows 1.0. It is not well received and suffers dismal sales.

1986
United Kingdom

Prestel reports 65,000 terminals in use and 1,200 information providers. Users view 8.7 million pages each week.

1986
United States

The first Freenet (Cleveland) comes online under the auspices of the Society for Public Access Computing.

1986
France

Some 1.4 million Minitel terminals are in use. French Telecom grosses $70 million on the service.

1986
United States

CompuServe is purchased by H&R Block Co. for $23 million.

1987
United States

The Middlesex (Mass.) News launches Fred the Computer, a single-line BBS system previewing the next day’s edition.

1987
United States

Ted Turner starts the cable-TV revolution when he launches CNN, Cable News Network.

1988
United States

July: Prodigy begins test marketing in Hartford, Atlanta and California with a service for P.C.’s.

1988
United States

November 2: Internet worm burrows through the Net, affecting 6,000 of the 60,000 hosts on the Internet.

1988
United States

October 10: New York Times photographers use a Macintosh and 9600 bps modem to send Dodgers-Mets photos from Los Angeles to New York.

1989
United States

Prodigy begins rolling out service in various metro areas. Pricing is unique—a flat rate of $9.95 per month plus a $49.95 start-up kit. It also sells modems for $100.

1990
United States

Microsoft introduces version 3.0 of Windows. It really works and sales take off. Its sales hit $1 billion, an industry first.

1990
United States

September 5: Prodigy goes national, offering local dial-ups in most major U.S. cities. IBM and Sears have invested $600 million. Within a month it has 500,000 subscribers at $12.95 per month.

1990
United States

September 29: AOL, still a service for Apple owners, announces a monthly feature called “Online Tonight,” an online talk show, and says P.C. software is in the works.

1990
United States

October: Access Atlanta becomes local dial-up system offering classifieds, the business section, and movie reviews. Cost: $6.95 per month.

1990
United States

December 13: The Electronic Trib, first multiline, P.C.-based electronic newspaper system, is launched by The Albuquerque Tribune using BBS software and a 286-12 PC.

1990
Switzerland

Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) is invented by Tim Berners-Lee, an Englishman, and colleagues at CERN, the European particle physics laboratory.

1990
Switzerland

October: Tim Berners-Lee coins the phrase “World Wide Web” to describe his hypertext project.

1990
United States

The World comes online (world.std.com), becoming the first commercial provider of Internet dial-up access.

1991
United States

February: Omaha World-Herald closes its videotex service, saying “The public just didn’t buy it.”

1991
Europe

Linux, a UNIX-like operating system, is created by Linus Torvalds and released free across the Internet.

1992
United States

March: AOL begins offering stock to the public on the Nasdaq market.

1992
France

May 6: Minitel serves more than 6 million terminals with 1,800 information sources.

1992
United States

The term “personal digital assistant” enters the lexicon with Apple’s release of the Newton.

1992
U.S. & Canada

NAA reports 11 newspapers have an online presence in the United States and Canada and more than 250 offer voice information services.

1992
United States

February: Gannett’s Florida Today launches on CompuServe. Content focuses on U.S. space program.

1992
United States

June 9: Congress removes restrictions prohibiting commercial use of the Internet.

1992
United States

November: Delphi becomes the first consumer online service to offer access to Internet mail, ftp, newsgroups, telnet and gopher.

1993
Switzerland

February: First alpha version of Marc Andreessen’s Mosaic browser for Windows is released by the NCSA at a conference at CERN in Geneva.

1993
United States

March 2: First known Internet e-mail message from a U.S. President is sent by Bill Clinton.

1993
Worldwide

Number of countries now reachable by e-mail: 117.

1993
Switzerland

April 30: CERN board declares that WWW technology will be freely usable by anyone.

1993
United States

August: Mosaic, first graphical Web browser for Windows, is released by the University of Illinois. It causes WWW to grow at a 341,634 percent annual rate of service traffic.

1993
United States

September 2: Middlesex (Mass.) News launches first Internet gopher-based online newspaper.

1993
United States

October: First journalism site on the Web is launched at the University of Florida. By now there are about 200 Web servers in the world.

1993
United States

Apple says its new?consumer online service, eWorld, will debut in April 1994.

1993
United States

December: Prodigy for Windows finally debuts, nearly a year after AOL’s Windows version. There are 232,000 orders placed in the first 10 days.

1993
United States

December 8: First article about the Web appears in The New York Times under the byline of John Markoff.

1994
Worldwide

More than 3 million hosts exist on the Internet. Editor & Publisher reports about 20 newspaper online services
exist worldwide, mostly BBS’s.

1994
United States

January 19: The first newspaper to regularly publish on the Web, the Palo Alto Weekly in California, begins twice-weekly postings of its full content. Price: Free.

1994
United States

January: The first online venture from The (Raleigh) News & Observer is Nandoland, a bulletin board system aimed at public-school children.

1994
United States

February: American Online hits the 600,000 subscriber mark.

1994
United States

March 13: Access Atlanta, the first newspaper site on Prodigy, is launched by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a Cox newspaper.

1994
United States

Netscape is formed by Jim Clark and Marc Andreessen and a Web browser, Netscape Navigator 1.0, is released.

1994
United States

June: The New York Times launches @Times on AOL. The content, mostly arts coverage, is widely criticized.

1994
Worldwide

June: Over 1,500 Web servers are registered with CERN.

1994
United States

July: Raleigh News and Observer goes to the net, launching the NandoTimes and the SportsServer, both Web-based news services.

1994
United States

August: AOL tops the 1 million subscriber mark.

1994
Spain

“El Mundo” starts an edition on the Internet, but only with “Su dinero” (your money) and “La revista” (the magazine), two weekly supplements from the newspaper. It launches October 22nd.

1994
United States

November 1: A guild strike shuts down San Francisco’s daily newspapers. Strikers and management create rival dailies on the Web, the Free Press, and The Gate.

1994
Worldwide

November 29: Deutsche Presse-Agentur reports some 200 newspapers around the world are offering editions online. It says 48 papers have “full-fledged electronic editions.”

1994
United Kingdom

December 7: The Daily Telegraph launches a Web-based version, The Electronic Telegraph.

1994
Luxembourg

Europe Online is founded by three European publishers.

1994
United States

Java, a programming language that allows animation on Web pages and much more, is introduced by Sun Microsystems.

1995
United States

Consumer online services experience 64 percent growth rate in 1995 and now reach 8.5 million members.

1995
Spain

August 1: “El Diario Vasco,” a daily newspaper, starts a weekly edition on the Internet.

1995
United States

August 21: Gannett’s USA Today begins offering its content free via the World Wide Web.

1996
United States

In January, Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin begin work on the search engine’s predecessor, BackRub.

1996
Luxembourg

Europe Online declares bankruptcy on August 2nd with $40 million in debts and 25,000 subscribers.

1996
Worldwide

In April, NAA reports about 175 North American dailies are currently available on the World Wide Web. About 775 publications are available online worldwide.

1996
United States

In May, The Wall Street Journal launches its Interactive Edition, a pay Web site. Cost: $49.94 a year.

1996
United States

In October, The Associated Press launches A.P. Online, a wire service to provide content for online newspapers.

1997
China

In April, Prodigy launches its service—with Internet access—in Shanghai on mainland China.

1997
United States

On November 14th, the Pulitzer Prize board opens the public-service prize competition to articles published online—but they must be entered on “a single CD-ROM.”

1998
United States

On September 7th, Google, Inc. is established in Menlo Park, California.

1999
United States

February: One-quarter of U.S. newspapers’ Web sites are said to be profitable at Editor & Publisher’s Interactive Newspapers conference.

1999
United States

On November 5th, after a yearlong antitrust suit, a federal court finds that Microsoft has a monopoly.

2000
United States

January 10: America Online announces it will acquire Time Warner in a deal worth $162 billion, an agreement Wall Street Journal technology columnist Kara Swisher later calls the “messiest merger” in corporate history.

2000
South Korea

OhmyNews is founded by Oh Yeon Ho in Seoul, South Korea. During the country’s election, the free online news service registers 20 million page views per day in a country of 40 million.

2000
United States

February 23: Stock prices for online companies have risen so high that Michael Bloomberg tells the Editor & Publisher Interactive conference in New Orleans that Yahoo! has a higher market capitalization than the six largest American newspaper companies combined.

2000
United States

July: America Online announces it has hit the 25 million subscriber mark.

2000
United States

Studies show that fewer Web users are clicking on banner and button ads. Percentages, once 1 percent or higher, are now .1 percent.

2001
United States

March: With advertising revenue falling, major news organizations lay off staff in their online operations. New York Times Digital, for example, cuts 100 positions. Print operations suffer layoffs as well. Knight Ridder rids itself of 10 percent of its workforce.

2001
United Kingdom

Interactive TV takes off in Britain, where 23 percent of households are expected to use it this year, The New York Times reports. This compares with 9 percent in Europe and 7.5 percent in the United States.

2001
United States

May: AOL has 29 million subscribers and AOL-Time Warner says it has 133 million subscribers to AOL, cable and magazines. The New York Times reports 57 percent of U.S. households have some type of Internet access.

2001
Worldwide

May: Some 461 million people worldwide are connected to the Internet, according to a study from IDC. Forecasts say it will be 1 billion by 2005.

2001
United Kingdom

Some 35 percent of British households will connect to the Internet via computer this year, Jupiter MMXI in London predicts.

2001
United States

July: 63 percent of U.S. households have computers, and “nearly all of them” have Internet access, The Wall Street Journal reports.

2001
United States

November: America Online passes the 32 million subscriber mark, adding 1 million in 2 1/2 months. MSN has 7 million and Earthlink has 4.8 million. NetZero counts 6.1 million users, but only 1.25 million of them pay.

2001
United States

November: Apple introduces the first Apple iPod.

2002
United States

April: NAA study finds that online newspapers are the top source for local news on the Web.

2003
United States

July 15: The Mozilla Foundation, a nonprofit California organization, is established. The foundation soon produces the award-winning Mozilla browser.

2003
Taiwan

Its Central News Agency reports 61 percent of the island’s population (12.64 million people) use the Internet and 9 million use broadband equipment.

2003
United Kingdom

October: Dutch fileshare program KaZaa is the most downloaded piece of software in history, with 230 million P.C.’s with it installed.

2004
United Kingdom

January: The UCLA World Internet Project reports that 63.6 percent of British men and 55.0 percent of British women use the Internet.

2004
United States

January 20: Apple’s 4-gigabyte iPod Mini is released and sells well.

2004
United Kingdom

March: The Manchester-based Guardian Unlimited newspaper has 7.5 million unique visitors on its Web site—less than 1/3 of whom live in the United Kingdom.

2004
Korea

March: The Korea Times reports more than 11 million Korean households have broadband connections.

2004
United States

An AOL survey finds that 70 percent of U.S. teens age 12-17 use the Internet for instant messaging, which is expected to overtake e-mail as the most popular form of Internet communication in 2005.

1 Comment on Online Timeline
Albatross says:
May 14, 2011 at 5:19pm
Your timeline mentions Internet Gopher in 1992, but does not point out its creation in April of 1991.
Submit a Comment
   
   
   
Enter the words above: * Enter the numbers you hear: *
Switch to audio Switch to image
Thank you for your comment. It will be published after it is approved by an editor. Read our comments policy »