Ten years since the end of the NSFNET

Apr 25, 2005 20:19 · 105 words · 1 minute read

Someone on the mailing list of former ANS employees points out that ten years ago this week, the NSFNETt was turned off. I was working in the ANS network operations center at the time, so I saw the decomissioning firsthand, though I wasn’t personally flipping any switches.

During the days of the NSFNET, commercial exploitation of the Internet was frowned upon, and AOL connecting to the Internet promised to dumb things down. By 1995, AOL owned ANS, which operated the NSFNET. When the NSFNET was turned off, it was clear that the Internet had moved out of research circles and was now a fully-commercial institution.