Just Explain It: The Internet And The World Wide Web

We’ll just say it. The World Wide Web and the Internet are not the same thing. We know, you might be shocked.

The Internet and the World Wide Web have become integral parts of our lives. For some going online is the first thing you do when you wake up and the last thing you do before going to bed.

But how they’re different and how they work together is the focus of today's Just Explain It.

The World Wide Web is the information, in the form of websites, that is found on the Internet. But before we get into that, here’s what they are and how they work together.

[Related: Why Americans Need Social Media “Vacation”]

The Internet’s precursor began as a U.S. military project in the 1950’s. It was called ARPAnet and eventually came online when it connected four university computers in 1969.

By 1984, it linked 1000 computers and was renamed the Internet, for interconnected network. And by 2012, the Internet had grown to 8.7 billion connected devices. While the Internet is the hardware made up of computers, servers, switches, and routers that contain data and allow it to travel, it’s also the software and communication protocols that allows different computers and networks to communicate. That makes it a “network of networks.”

The World Wide Web, on the other hand, allows users to access the information on the Internet by displaying web pages on a browser. Tim Berners-Lee created the Web in 1989, and in 1991 the first web page went live. There are now almost 650 million websites in the world.

[Related: Father Of The Web Scolds “Hypocritical” West Over Spying]


So, the Web is just one type of traffic on the Internet. Email, video chat, gaming, and many other types of data are like different kinds of vehicles that travel and rely on the infrastructure of that superhighway called the Internet.

How does the World Wide Web show information from the Internet?

As you already know, to get to a website, you type in its web address or uniform resource locator - better known as a URL – into a web browser. Entering the URL sends a request to a domain name server, or DNS, to access that website's server. Like a translator, the DNS converts the URL into an IP address. Every server and computer connected to the Internet has an IP, or Internet protocol, address. You could type an IP address into your browser, but IP addresses can change, and it's much easier to remember an address like yahoo.com.

After the DNS tells your computer the website’s correct IP address, your computer can then directly contact the website’s server. The website’s server responds to the request and sends the information back to your computer. Your computer’s web browser converts the information into a readable form. That's the website you see on your computer screen.

So, what do you think? What kind of vehicle do you prefer to drive on the Internet superhighway? Leave us your comments below or on Twitter using the #JustExplainItNews.
Loading...
  • Ebola victim's sister says hospital denied request
    Ebola victim's sister says hospital denied request

    FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — The family of the first Ebola victim to die in the United States says the hospital that cared for him has refused for weeks to release lab results showing the effects of an experimental drug treatment, fanning their suspicions that the facility mishandled the case.

  • Russia says Ukraine should find money to pay for gas within a week

    By Katya Golubkova MOSCOW (Reuters) - Ukraine should be able to find ways of paying for Russian gas supplies within a week, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Wednesday, suggesting a standoff would end once Moscow received financial guarantees from Kiev. The latest round of gas talks between Moscow and Kiev ended late on Tuesday in Brussels with no agreement in a dispute that prompted Russia to cut off gas supplies to its neighbor in mid-June, potentially hurting flows west to the European Union. But while Novak said he was optimistic for new talks on Oct. ...

  • Indiana man was violent long before 7 killings
    Indiana man was violent long before 7 killings

    GARY, Ind. (AP) — With hindsight, there were signs years ago of increasing violence against women by Darren Vann, who police said Tuesday has confessed to killing seven women in northwestern Indiana.

  • AP-GfK Poll: Most expect GOP victory in November
    AP-GfK Poll: Most expect GOP victory in November

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Two weeks before Election Day, most of the nation's likely voters now expect the Republican Party to take control of the U.S. Senate, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll. And by a growing margin, they say that's the outcome they'd like to see.

  • Bedouin Israeli doctor mysteriously turns jihadi
    Bedouin Israeli doctor mysteriously turns jihadi

    HURA, Israel (AP) — He was a quiet whiz kid at the top of his class in Israel, who overcame tough odds in this minority Arab village to become a star medical student and hospital intern.

  • Coke to slash costs as soda sales remain flat
    Coke to slash costs as soda sales remain flat

    NEW YORK (AP) — Coca-Cola said it plans to slash costs by $3 billion a year after the world's biggest beverage maker reported disappointing sales on flat soda volume.

  • How 1 doctor saved Nigeria from Ebola catastrophe
    How 1 doctor saved Nigeria from Ebola catastrophe

    A day after the World Health Organization declared Nigeria free of Ebola, the doctor who treated the country's first case of the deadly virus and later died from the disease herself is being hailed as a hero for helping stop the outbreak.

Follow Yahoo! News