The Internet (most often written using a capital “i” because it is a proper noun) is a publicly accessible series of interconnected computer networks that are capable of transmitting digital data via packet switching, based on the Internet Protocal standard or IP. Quite often people make the mistake of using the terms World Wide Web and Internet interchangeably, but they are not synonymous. What’s the difference? As stated, the Internet is a series of interconnected computer networks that are physically linked by either copper wire, fiber-optic cable, or more recently, wireless connection. Meanwhile the Web (also capitalized) is more accurately a series of interconnected documents and other resources that are linked together by URLs or hyperlinks. Ergo, the World Wide Web is accessible as a service of the Internet, as well as e-mail, file sharing, streaming media, and even online gaming. How the Internet came into existence is a long, convoluted story, but its commercialization and the emergence of privately owned Internet Service Providers (ISPs) beginning in the late 1980s has had a huge impact on both human culture and commerce and from all indications the changes it has brought will only continue.