March 5, 1995
The Yahoo! search engine officially launches on the Internet. 13 months later, Yahoo! will hold its IPO at a price of $13 per share. Yahoo!’s stock will peak at $475 in January 2000, and fall to $8.02 in September 2001.
March 2, 1997
During a hearing on Microsoft’s alleged antitrust activities, Bill Gates admits Microsoft’s contracts bar Internet content providers from promoting Netscape’s browser. Eventually, Internet Explorer dominates the web browser market as it is shipped for free with every copy of Windows.
March 1, 2008
America Online discontinues the Netscape web browser. Netscape was the first commercial web browser, largely responsible for helping popularize the Internet in the mid-1990’s. Netscape eventually was overtaken by Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, as Microsoft included it for free with every copy of Windows. However, the computer code for Netscape lives on as the basis of the Mozilla Firefox browser project, which continues to gain popularity to this day.
February 22, 1999
The First Internet Bank of Indiana opens, becoming the first full-service bank accessible only through the Internet. Who knew it would take a couple of hoosiers to start the first Internet bank?
February 15, 2005
The now-ubiquitous video sharing site, YouTube, is launched. Few web sites have had such an immediate impact on our usage of the Internet. Less than 2 years after its launch, Google paid $1.65 billion dollars to purchase it. Today, it only trails Facebook, Google, and Gmail as the most visited web sites in the world. Additionally, they created a new marketplace for the words “you” and “tube”.
February 12, 2001
Jan de Wit sends out an email stating that it is a picture of the famous tennis player Anna Kournikova. Rather than being a picture of the Russian known more for her looks than her play (although she was ranked as high as #8 in the world in singles and #1 in doubles), it was a malicious script that tried to send itself to every address in a user’s address book and e-mail inbox (Windows users only, of course). The malware was so efficient, it was known to be spreading twice as fast as the “Love Bug” virus that devastated corporate networks a year earlier. The moral of the story is that men are easily manipulated.
February 8, 2005
Google Maps is launched to the public. I never had to ask for directions again. Not that I did before.
February 8, 1996
The massive Internet collaboration “24 Hours in Cyberspace” takes place. It was so early in the history of the mainstream Internet, I bet none of you remember this. I didn’t!