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Competing Histories of Technology: Recognizing the Vital Role of International Scientific Communities behind the Innovation of the Internet

Abstract : One way to make the history of computing relevant is to explain how different histories are in competition with each other and how they support quite different technology policy. The prevalent history that the US military created the Internet hides the international spirit of goodwill and cooperation that made a particular implementation of Internet happen. This is not just an academic issue. The success of the Internet encourages us to ask how we can continue to innovate the technologies of the Internet or new technologies of a similar power. The myth that the military created the Internet also supports the idea that it was designed on purpose according to a plan. This could not be further from the truth. In fact, the most interesting thing about the Internet is that, in its history, it had a tendency to violate the plans set forth. The international community invigorated the kind of inquiry that would lead to the Internet, not the United States in isolation. In order to create something like the Internet, then, we need to provide an environment for international exchange and cooperation, not maintain proprietary secrets and work in a disciplined environment of practical research.
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Christopher Leslie. Competing Histories of Technology: Recognizing the Vital Role of International Scientific Communities behind the Innovation of the Internet. International Conference on History of Computing (HC), Jun 2013, London, United Kingdom. pp.196-206, ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-41650-7_18⟩. ⟨hal-01455251⟩

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