A great post on the basics from Smashing Magazine today. For all of us who make our living, feed our families and pay our bills based on this thing called the internet; it’s occasionally good to plug back into this machine to remind ourselves how it works.
In this case the overview begins with something that some of us in the West think could never or rarely happen: the Internet shuts down. Of course if we lived in a Middle Eastern state, this would be something we’d have to adjust our business continuity and processes for.
Here’s a snippet:
Imagine that you wake up one morning, reach groggily for your laptop and fire it up. You’ve just finished developing a brand new website and last night you were proudly clicking through the product list. The browser window is still open, the Widget 3000 is still sparkling in its AJAXy newness. You grin like a new parent and expectantly click on “More details”. And nothing happens. You click again, still nothing. You press
Refreshand get that annoying swirling icon and then the page goes blank. Help! The Internet is gone!
This chapter starts with the worst case scenario and works inwards, exploring the infrastructure of the Internet and the make-up of a Web server, imparting lots of little tips and commands along the way, opening up a new perspective on how websites can stop working — and be fixed.