By 1990 when the ARPANET itself was finally decommissioned, TCP/IP had supplanted or marginalized most other wide-area computer network protocols worldwide, and IP was well on its way to becoming the bearer service for the global information infrastructure.
In 1980, Tim Berners-Lee took a software consulting job with CERN, the Swiss/French nuclear research center. Among other things, he wrote a program for his own purposes to help him keep track of connections among various people, computers, and projects in the lab. He called it “Enquire”, short for Enquire Within upon Everything, a musty old book of Victorian advice he noticed as a child in his parents’ house outside London.
This got him to thinking.
“Suppose all the information ...