Internet is a network of networks. Millions of computer all over the world are connected through the internet. Computer users on the internet can contact with one another anywhere in the world. If a computer is connected to the internet, one can connect to millions of computers. It is very much similar to the telephone connection where one can talk with any person anywhere in the world.
On the internet, a huge resource of information is accessible to people across the world. Information in every field starting from education, Science, Health, Medicine, History and Geography to business, news, etc. can be retrieved from the internet. One can also download programs and software packages from the internet.
Due to the tremendous information resources the internet can provide, it is now indispensable to every organization and personal activities.
Some of the popular services of the internet are:
- E-mail: Sending and receiving mail electronically.
- File Transfer: Transferring files from one computer to another. 3. WWW (World Wide Web): Retrieving information residing on the internet servers in the form of websites.
- Chat: Exchanging views or communicating information instantly.
The development of internet started when US Defense Department set up the ARPANET (Advanced Research Project Agency Network) to have a failure proof communication network for defense department of US.
This architecture was later adopted by an educational institute for an exchange of views among research scholars and then, it was thrown open to the public. Since 1994, the internet has grown by leaps and bounds driven by cheaper cost, easier to use and increase in information.
Applications of Internet
1) On-line communication:
Computer users around the world use the E-mail services to communicate with each other extensively.
2) Feedback about products:
Commercial organizations are also using the internet to gather information about the satisfaction of existing products and market opportunities of new products.
This is usually accomplished by putting up an interactive survey application by the organization on a WWW site on the Internet.
3) Product promotion:
Several commercial organizations are effectively using the internet services for promoting their products by the use of different social networks.
4) Customer Support Service:
Many organizations are also using the internet to provide timely customer support.
5) On-line shopping:
The Internet has also facilitated the introduction of a new market concept, which consists of virtual shops. These shops remain open 24 hrs all the year round and are accessible to make purchase all around the world.
6) On-line journals and magazines:
There are many WWW sites on the internet, which consists of an electronic version of many journals and magazines.
7) Real-time updates:
It helps to provide news and other happenings that may be on-going in different parts of the word but with the use of the internet, we come to know about the real-time updates in every field be it in business, sports, finance, politics, entertainment and others very easily.
Many time the decisions are taken on the real-time updates that are happening in the various parts of the world and for this, the internet is very essential and helpful.
In order to do research, we need to go through hundreds of books as well as the references and that was one of the most difficult jobs to do earlier.
Since, the internet came into life, everything is available in just a click. The user just has to search for the concerned topic and will get hundreds of references that may be beneficial for the research and since, the internet is here to make research activity easy and hence, public user can take a large amount benefit from the research work that have been done.
Education is one of the best things that the internet can provide. There are a number of books, reference books, online help centers, expert`s views and other study oriented material on the internet that can make the learning process very easier as well as a fun to learn.
10) Financial Transaction:
It is a term which is used when there is an exchange of money. With the use of internet in the financial transaction, the work has become a lot easier. Payments, Funds transfer, banking transactions can be done through on-line banking service.
The Internet is also used for entertainment. Such as chatting with friends, sharing videos, watching movies, listening music, live telecast of sports and other events, playing games, etc.
12) Job Search:
Using internet, searching job has become an easier task. There are an endless amount of websites on the internet that provided news about a vacancy in various post as required.
There are many people who are very much interested in writing blogs and for them the internet is the best place. They can not only write blogs as per their wish but can also publicize their work so that their work reaches to most of the people and they get appreciated.
Positive and Negative Impact of Internet
The positive impacts of internet to the society, organization and individual are:
- Faster, cheaper and easier medium of communication.
- Information sharing and browsing.
- File transferring facility.
- Reach to the worldwide viewers.
- Effective, easier, faster and cheaper promotion of product or service.
- Better customer support and customer relationship management (CRM).
- Online services like banking, shopping, education, etc.
- E-mail communication for sending and receiving an electronic document.
- Enhanced collaboration between different organizations.
- Effective Supply Chain Management (SCM).
- Electronic payment system using credit /debit cards, ATM, online payment, electronic cheque,
smart card, electronic purse, etc.
- Newsgroups for instant sharing of news and feedback system.
- Creation of new job opportunities related with the internet.
- Source for entertainment.
- Social networking for instant touch with friends and relatives.
Misuses of Internet / Negative impacts of Internet
The negative impacts of internet to the society, organization and individual are:
- It is the most common medium for spreading malicious software like virus, worm, etc.
- It has increased piracy.
- Pornography (uploading, publishing, viewing sexual contents in the form of text, image, audio
- Stealing, modifying or destructing data.
- Piracy of software, audio, video or other intellectual contents.
- Hacking of organizational system, website, database etc.
- It is also used to harass people by sending insulting comments, making vulgar cartoons,
- Unemployment problem for the individuals not having knowledge about the Internet.
- It has increased digital divide.