How to Get Connected

Surfing the INTERNET

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Now that you're interested in what resources are available, how does one go about getting connected?  Time was that you needed a standard, dedicated connection to the Internet.  Then you needed a robust computer system and a couple of zany gurus to keep it all running.  And once a year you could
expect an invoice in the $30,000 range to keep the data flowing.

These days, anyone can connect, from small libraries and non-profits to individuals.  (and of course commercial-mh)  And the prices are affordable.

There is a NSFNet acceptable-use policy you must agree to adhere to if your traffic passes through NSFNet.  It is available from the NSF Network Service Center.

Contact your regional network first to see what services might be available to you.   A list of regional nets can be obtained from the NSF Network Service Center (address below), or check with a local college or university's academic computing center.  A university may be able to give you a guest account on its system for educational purposes.

Access to electronic mail alone is roughly $20 a month at this writing. Additional capabilities, including telnet and ftp, cost more, and it will cost $2,000 or more per year if you want to operate your own host system. The good news is that the costs are spiraling downwards.  Here are a few other methods of connecting to the net.  Many more are listed in the "must-have" books at the end of this article.