As time passes, the role of the internet becomes larger and larger. In 1995, the number of internet users in the world amounted to 16 million. As things progressed, the number of internet users increased to 300 million at the turn of the century. And today, this figure has increased to a whopping 5 billion-plus. Considering the total population of Planet Earth is approximately 8 billion, it is easy to conclude that more people in the world are internet users than not. In case you were wondering where we got these figures from, rest assured; these figures came from Internet World Stats which is as credible a source for data on the internet as anything else.
When something has so much influence on the world, there is bound to be a lot of talk about it. One of the topics discussed related to the internet is a semantic one about the relationship between the terms “internet” and “network.” In case you wonder about this topic as well, this article is just for you! We say this because we will be discussing in detail how the term “internet” is related to the term “network.” We will first be defining the parameters of the two phenomena and then we will be looking at the different ways in which those two are related to one another.
Table of Contents
The internet is one of the most sought-after technologies in the world. It consists of the
World Wide Web
There are tens of billions of web pages on the World Wide Web (WWW). They can be divided into three parts:
- Surface web: the part of the WWW that is the most accessible and is indexable on search engines.
- Deep web: consists of web pages that are not indexable on search engines and cannot be accessed that easily. The deep web is known to be seven thousand times bigger than the surface web.
- Dark web: is the most secretive part of the web and is often used for criminal activity.
All types of online apps require usage of the internet. These apps range from instant messaging apps such as Viber to social media apps like MySpace to gaming apps of the likes of Subway Surfers.
Apart from apps and the WWW, the communications platforms of large organizations are also based on the internet.
The internet is distributed to people when they subscribe to offers of internet service providers such as AT&T Internet packages.
Computer networks are defined as connections between two computers. And by computers, we do not just mean personal computers such as laptops and desktops; we also mean any device that can run a computer program.
That said, let us delve into the different types of computer networks:
- Personal Area Network (PAN)s: PANs are the simplest types of computer networks. They can be as small as the connection between a printer, a computer, and a mouse.
- Local Area Network (LAN)s: are used to connect computers within the same building or adjacent buildings. LANs are ideal for private offices
- Campus Area Network (CAN)s: Campus area networks are ones that are used to connect computers that are in nearby buildings, quite literally in the setup of a campus. That is why many universities have CANS set up.
- Metropolitan Area Network (MAN)s: consist of all networks that connect devices of an entire city. A good example would be when a metropolitan authority provides free internet to people throughout its metro area.
- Wide Area Network (WAN)s: are the widest of all networks. They connect computing devices that are in different cities, thousands of miles away from one another.
The Internet As A Wide Area Network
From the above, it is evident that the internet connects computers. It is also clear that anything that connects computers is called a network. Thus, we can conclude that the internet is indeed a network. And when it comes to the type of network the internet is, we believe the answer is pretty clear. The internet, in our opinion, is a wide area network. In fact, it may very well be termed as the widest of all networks given how it serves people in different continents (actually all seven of them) and even on the International Space Station!