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55 Ways to Have Fun With Google. Go to Table of Contents. Visit Gifcom.

PC in ‘81. 1984, the year of cyberpunk novel Neuromancer, sees the introduction of the Domain Name System (DNS).

In the late ‘80s, the number of Internet hosts breaks 100,000, and people are starting to get lost. In 1990, before the days of the World Wide Web, McGill University student Alan Emtage creates FTP indexing search tool Archie. One year later, Mark McCahill introduces the alternative Gopher. Veronica (Archie’s girlfriend in the comic books, and the “grandmother of search engines”) appears on the scene in 1992, spidering Gopherspace texts, and Jughead arrives in ‘93.

1990-1993: WWW, and WWWW

In the meantime, the World Wide Web, created by Tim Berners-Lee and released by CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) in ‘91, is starting to take off. And 1993, the year the first web browser Mosaic takes the world by storm, also sees the first acclaimed web robot, Matthew Gray’s World Wide Web Wanderer. Martijn Koster announces meta-tag spidering Aliweb in late ‘93.

1994: Search Engines See the Light

The World Wide Web is becoming the most important internet service. Pizza can be ordered online, and soon Sun will give birth to Java programming technology. (The Java motto was “write once, run everywhere,” but frustrated programmers around the world later changed it to “write once, debug everywhere.”)

In early 1994, Jerry Yang and David Filo of Stanford University start Yahoo! in an attempt to exert some kind of order on an otherwise anarchic collection of documents. (The word Yahoo is short for "Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle," but was pretty much looked up randomly in a dictionary by the two Yahoo founders – the two creators say they liked the name because they considered themselves yahoos.)

Some months later in Washington, Brian Pinkerton’s WebCrawler is getting about its work; over at Carnegie Melon, Dr. Michael Maldin creates Lycos (the name comes from the Latin wolf spider).