The Internet is the global system of interconnected computer networks that use the Internet protocol suite (TCP/IP) to link devices worldwide. It is a network of networks that consists of private, public, academic, business, and government networks of local to global scope, linked by a broad array of electronic, wireless, and optical networking technologies. The Internet carries a vast range of information resources and services, such as the inter-linked hypertext documents and applications of the World Wide Web (WWW), electronic mail, telephony, and file sharing.

The Internet has no centralized governance in either technological implementation or policies for access and usage; each constituent network sets its own policies. Only the overreaching definitions of the two principal namespaces on the Internet, the Internet Protocol address (IP address) space and the Domain Name System (DNS), are directed by a maintainer organization, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). The technical underpinning and standardization of the core protocols is an activity of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), a non-profit organization of loosely affiliated international participants that anyone may associate with by contributing technical expertise.

The internet is the biggest worldwide communication network of computers. It has millions of smaller domestic, academicbusiness, and government networks, which together carry many different kinds of information. The term is sometimes abbreviated as “the net”. The World Wide Web is one of its biggest services. It is used by a few billion people all over the world.

Services on the internet

The internet is used for many things, such as electronic mailonline chatfile transfer, and the interlinked web pages and other documents of the World Wide Web.

The most used service on the internet is the World Wide Web (which is also called the “Web”). The Web contains websites, including blogs and wikis like WikipediaWeb pages on the internet can be seen and read by anyone (unless the page needs a password, or it is blocked).

The second biggest use of the internet is to send and receive e-mail. E-mail is private and goes from one user to another. Instant messaging (such as AIM or ICQ) is similar to email but allows two or more people to chat with each other much faster.

Some governments think the Internet is a bad thing, and block all or part of it. For example, the Chinese government thinks that Wikipedia is bad. Many times no one in China can read it or add to it. Some parents block parts of the internet they think are bad for children to see. Well-known examples of the whole internet being blocked are in North Korea and Myanmar.

Are Web and Internet the Same?

The Internet is not synonymous with World Wide Web. The Internet is a massive network of networks, a networking infrastructure. It connects millions of computers together globally, forming a network in which any computer can communicate with any other computer as long as they are both connected to the Internet. The World Wide Web, or simply Web, is a way of accessing information over the medium of the Internet. It is an information-sharing model that is built on top of the Internet.




Electronic Mail (email or e-mail) is a method of exchanging messages between people using electronic devices. Email first entered limited use in the 1960s and by the mid-1970s had taken the form now recognized as email. Email operates across computer networks, which today is primarily the Internet. Some early email systems required the author and the recipient to both be online at the same time, in common with instant messaging. Today’s email systems are based on a store-and-forward model. Email servers accept, forward, deliver, and store messages. Neither the users nor their computers are required to be online simultaneously; they need to connect only briefly, typically to a mail server or a webmail interface, for as long as it takes to send or receive messages.

The history of modern Internet email services reaches back to the early ARPANET, with standards for encoding email messages published as early as 1973 (RFC 561). An email message sent in the early 1970s looks very similar to a basic email sent today. An email had an important role in creating the Internet, and the conversion from ARPANET to the Internet in the early 1980s produced the core of the current services.


Historically, the term electronic mail was used generically for any electronic document transmission. For example, several writers in the early 1970s used the term to describe fax document transmission. As a result, it is difficult to find the first citation for the use of the term with the more specific meaning it has today.

Electronic mail has been most commonly called email or e-mail since around 1993, but variations of the spelling have been used:

  • email is the most common form used online, and is required by IETF Requests for Comments (RFC) and working groups and increasingly by style guides. This spelling also appears in most dictionaries.
  • e-mail is the format that sometimes appears in edited, published American English and British English writing as reflected in the Corpus of Contemporary American English data, but is falling out of favor in some style guides.
  • mail was the form used in the original protocol standard, RFC 524.The service is referred to as mail, and a single piece of electronic mail is called a message.
  • An email is a traditional form that has been used in RFCs for the “Author’s Address” and is expressly required “for historical reasons”.
  • E-mail is sometimes used, capitalizing the initial E as in similar abbreviations like E-pianoE-guitarA-bomb, an H-bomb.


Web-based email

Many email providers have a web-based email client (e.g. AOL MailGmailOutlook.comHotmail, and Yahoo! Mail). This allows users to log into the email account by using any compatible web browser to send and receive their email. Mail is typically not downloaded to the client, so can’t be read without a current Internet connection.

POP3 email services

The Post Office Protocol 3 (POP3) is a mail access protocol used by a client application to read messages from the mail server. Received messages are often deleted from the server. POP supports simple download-and-delete requirements for access to remote mailboxes (termed maildrop in the POP RFC’s).

IMAP email servers

The Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) provides features to manage a mailbox from multiple devices. Small portable devices like smartphones are increasingly used to check email while traveling and to make brief replies, larger devices with better keyboard access being used to reply at greater length. IMAP shows the headers of messages, the sender and the subject and the device needs to request to download specific messages. Usually, mail is left in folders in the mail server.

MAPI email servers

Messaging Application Programming Interface (MAPI) is used by Microsoft Outlook to communicate to Microsoft Exchange Server – and to a range of other email server products such as Axigen Mail ServerKerio ConnectScalixZimbraHP OpenMailIBM Lotus NotesZarafa, and Bynari where vendors have added MAPI support to allow their products to be accessed directly via Outlook.