18 Interesting Firsts on the Internet.

There are more than 18.5 million Internet users in Pakistan among them 1.7 million are broadband users (as of June 2009). Internet has become a necessity of our lives especially for student and working class. But most of the Internet users do not know the history of Internet or many Internet services they use daily.

The purpose of this article is to increase your knowledge about what were the first different things happened in Internet World.  Below are the 18 “firsts” of the Internet. This is quite an interesting study.

1. The First Email

In 1971, Ray Tomlinson sent first email and also made use of @ symbol in email addresses. Same systems were available even before (early 60s) but they were only used it to exchange messages on mainframe computer. The current shape of email emerged in 1970s. It is to be noted that Internet didn’t even exist at that time but its ancestor, ARPANET did.

2. The First Ever Domain Name

Computer manufacturer Symbolics (now obsolete) on 15th March 1985 registered the first ever domain name that was “symbolics.com”.

Enea.se and luth.se were registered in 1983 and 1984 respectively but using old domain system. Symoblics.com was registered using the current/new domain system.

3. The First SPAM Email Ever

Gary Thuerk is considered the first email spammer who sent spam email messages to 393 people on ARPANET on 3rd May 1978. Gary Thuerk advertised a new model of Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) computers in that spam email.

4. The First Ever Mobile Phone with Internet Access Facility

Nokia 9000 Communicator (launched in 1996, Finland) is the first ever mobile phone with Internet Access. However, NTT DoCOMo i-Mode (1999) in Japan is considered the pioneer of Cell Phone Internet Services.

5. The First Ever Website

Info.cern.ch which was launched in late 1990 is the first even website which ran on a NeXT computer at CERN. http://info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html was the first ever webpage which contained information about the World Wide Web Project. This page is no longer accessible.

6. The First Ever E-Commerce Website and Transaction

The first e-commerce site was neither the giant eBay nor Amazon. NetMarket (Online Retailer) claim to process first ever secure transaction on the web on August 11, 1994 when they sold a copy of Sting CD Ten Summoner’s Tales for $12.48 + shipping.

7. The First Ever Online Bank

Stanford Federal Credit Union is considered the first financial institution that provided Online Internet Banking services to all of its customers in October, 1994.

8. The First Ever Search Engine

It’s neither Google nor Yahoo. WebCrawler.com was the first Search Engine which was launched in 1994. Unlike the previous Search Engines, WebCrawler was first full-text web SE.


9. The First Ever Blog

Justin Hall is considered the first blogger who started a web diary in 1994. The term webblog was introduced in 1997 which later led to “blog” in 1999.

10. The First Ever Podcast

Dave Winer added functionality to add references to audio content inside the RSS feeds, which made syndication of audioblogging possible. Winer on January 11, 2001 demonstrated this new RSS functionality by putting a Grateful Dead song in his Scripting News blog.

11. The First Item Ever Sold on eBay

A broken laser pointer worth $14.83 was first ever sale on eBay, previously callsed AuctionWeb in 1995. The buyer was a collector of broken laser pointers.

12. The First Book Ever Sold on Amazon

The first book sold on Amazon.com (1995) was Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought by Douglas Hofstadter.

13. The first edit on Wikipedia

Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia founder was the first one to edit on Wikipedia. It was a test edit with text “Hello, World!”

14. The First Ever Video on YouTube

The first video on YouTube was put by the the cofounder of YouTube Jawed Karim on April 23, 2005. The title of the video is “Me at the Zoo” and can still be found on YouTube with over 1.5 million views.

15. The First Ever Message on Twitter

Again, the first recorded message on twitter was by the Think Tank of Twitter, Jack Dorsey on 21st March 2006. It was a demonstration message with text “just setting up my twttr”. Twttr was not a typo; initially twitter was referred as “twttr”.


16. The First Ever Voice Chat Service

Rocket Messenger and AOL are considered the pioneers of Voice Chat service. Later followed by Paltalk which experience a phenomenal success. Yahoo became the mostly used voice chat service later on as it provided many unique features to the users i.e. individual voice chat, conference calling, chat room, etc..

17. The First Ever Website Hacked

In 1990, Hackers broke into and spoiled federal websites that included US Department of Justic, U.S. Air Force, CIA, NASA and some others.

18. The First Ever Social Network Site

Friendster.com is the first Social Network website of modern days which was launched in 2002. MySpace was introduced by two friends a year later and it was a tremendous and quick hit.

Edit: Friends Reunited ( http://www.friendsreunited.com ) launched in July 2000 was first ever Social Networking Site. Thank you Alec East for the contribution and correction.

There must be a lot of other things, I have missed but you are welcome to make any additions you want. If you find some information incorrect, just let me know. Thank you

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