The first user of the internet was Charley Kline, a student of the University of California, Los Angeles. He sent the first message which consisted of just five characters – “login”. It was transmitted over the ARPANET, the network of the Advanced Research Projects Agency and the precursor of the Internet.
The message was sent on 29th October 1969 from UCLA’s SDS Sigma 7 Host computer to the Stanford Research Institute’s SDS 940 Host computer.
Technically, at that time, ARPANET wasn’t the Internet, as we know it, because it wasn’t running the TCP/IP protocol!
The world's first free web-based email service, Hotmail, was launched on July 4, 1996. The date was chosen carefully as it signified "freedom" from ISP based email service - July 4 being the United States independence day. [more...]