The Internet — as a network, and as the global phenomenon we experience, is impossible.
The purpose of the InternetImpossible project is to capture, share, and raise awareness of the many and varied wonders of the Internet. This ranges from its technology to its reach and its impact. Impact is noted on people, on cultures, on ways of doing things.
Why is it called “InternetImpossible”? Its name stems from the fact that the Internet, as we know it, was impossible to conceive of — no one could have predicted its scope; had anyone outlined such a global network in hypothetical terms, no one could have mapped a project plan to get to those results. Ultimately, the Internet has not been so impossible after all — but a clear demonstration of what can be achieved when an unimaginable number of people contributed to the Internet’s growth and evolution. The Internet has evolved, even as it was built piece by piece (of networking gear, shared content, etc). And, it has enabled people to do (heretofor) Impossible things — individual crafters can now support international businesses; people can stay in touch with loved ones across the globe (through voice, video, and snapped cat photos).
- We should cherish that aspect of it.
- We should use it as a reminder that we should never let ourselves be limited by the extent of our ability to imagine.
The Internet is, in some ways, being taken for granted. Along with that ease and familiarity comes an increase in efforts to apply existing norms, processes and problem solving approaches. While we clearly need to integrate the Internet with our cultures and societies, we should be sure we don’t lose sight of the things the Internet has taught us we are capable of (thought to be Impossible), using new approaches we would not have previously considered. Indeed, we should seek to ensure that the Internet can continue to amaze us with the Impossible things it achieves, and that are achieved with it.
“Impossible: 1a : incapable of being or of occurring”.
“Internet: : an electronic communications network that connects computer networks and organizational computer facilities around the world “
Posts collected under the “Contributed Stories” category illustrate how many and varied people across the globe have achieved the Impossible — with and for the Internet — in their own words.
The “Collaboration” category focuses on exposing and illustrating the collaborative activities that have brought us this impossible Internet, and the need for onward cross-industry, international, interpersonal collaboration going forward.