O'Reilly logo

100 Ideas that Changed the Web by Jim Boulton

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Get off the internet, I need to make a call

IDEA No 4

THE MODEM

The modem is the digital descendant of the telegraph, enabling computers to send data to each other over a telephone line. Short for ‘modulator-demodulator’, it translates an analogue signal into a digital signal, and vice-versa. Before the modem made it possible to visit other people’s machines, the computer was simply a useful tool. The modem turned it into a place.

An ad for the Hayes Smartmodem, offering fast download speeds of 1.2k per second.

Until 1968, AT&T had a monopoly on the use of its phone lines, only allowing its own Bell Laboratories devices to be connected to its ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required