A Brief History of the Internet and How it’s Evolution Provides a Blueprint for the Future

Chris Herd
7 min readSep 12, 2017

The third wave of the internet is upon us

Consider it a revolutionary moment which involves a paradigm shift from the preceding two waves. Here’s how:

This first involved adoptance and learning. By necessity it had to involve creation as it was the birth of the internet in the public realm. These first companies were forced to deal with the regulatory burdens of having to negotiate permission to use the infrastructure required for access to the internet which proved problematic and burdensome.

Because of this government involvement was necessary

It included difficult negotiations with telecoms companies who were initially reluctant to grant access to their infrastructure. Creating the internet was the biggest challenge of the first wave.

Getting online was the first problem

The second problem was that once you were online what was there to do?

It may be hard to imagine now but initially, the internet was a blank canvas. Everything we see now came after that point of creation. What followed was rapid expansion and development of services and industries. The first wave witnessed the birth of e-commerce companies and became a Frankenstein amalgamation of the real word and the web.

It was a confused place trying to find its place and meaning. It lacked the subtleties we experience now and was constantly fraught with danger or disaster.

Everyone who lived through it remembers the distinct noise of dial-up and the despair that arose when the phone rang and our parents became executioners to our connection.

Having waited minutes for a web page to load our hopes and dreams could be ended in an instant

The Second Wave

While the initial days of the internet involved laying the groundwork, the “second wave,” started in 2000, as…

Chris Herd

CEO / Founder / Coach @FirstbaseHQ Empowering people to work in their lives not live at work ✌️✌