What are the benefits of social media and the internet?

     Welcome to my very first blog post, ever! Today, I’m going to present you with a brief history of the internet along with some of the web browsers we use when accessing the internet. I will also give you some information on the way we communicate using the World Wide Web. I’ll end my post by talking about e-commerce and m-commerce.

First of all, I want to start by saying that you don’t have to use the internet to conduct business, send mail, or be sociable. In fact, I know people who prefer to do business face-to-face, they prefer to use the postal service rather than email, and I myself prefer being sociable in person rather than over social media. The truth is, we live in a society where everything is instantaneous and accessible whenever we want it. The internet started out as nothing more than an idea. That idea became a reality and it allows us to connect in a way that we never have before.

If you’re sitting there thinking, “Why should I use the internet? What is social media?” this blog is for you. I have included some information that I have found online. The links for each site are located under that topic. You can also use a search engine to locate additional information by tying in the name of the topics listed in this blog. Personally, I prefer the Google search engine. I would highly recommend that one. All of the websites and images were found using Google. So without further ado, here we go.

 

A Brief history of the Internet

Internet

The internet actually started back in the 1960’s. Government researchers needed a way to share information. In order to share the information, they either travelled to the computer or they would have the magnetic computer tapes sent through the postal system. Information did not get shared nearly as fast as it does today. On January 1, 1983, a new communications protocol was launched. It’s called TCP/IP (Transfer Control Protocol/Internetwork Protocol). This allowed different computers on different networks to communicate with each other. Thus, the Internet was born.

The above information and more can be found by clicking here.

Image Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Internet.png

 

Web Browsers

Browsers

The primary browsers that are in use today are: Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari. Microsoft Edge is the new version of Internet Explorer. Edge was released with Windows 8.

  • 1991: World Wide Web browser is released. Later renamed to Nexus.
  • 1993: Mosaic is released. Mosaic is credited with popularizing the internet and introducing the web to the public. Contemporary browsers like Internet Explorer and Firefox still use many of the graphical user interface (GUI) characteristics of Mosaic such as the action bar that provides basic browsing functionalities.
  • 1994: Netscape is formed. Netscape Navigator was the first commercial web browser.
  • 1995: The first browser war is started with the release of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer Web Browser.
  • 1998: Mozilla is formed as an open source project by Netscape.
  • 2002: The first browser war ends with Internet Explorer being triumphant.
  • 2003: Apple’s Safari web browser makes its debut.
  • 2004: Firefox 1.0 is released and the second web browser war begins.
  • 2006: Internet Explorer 7 is released.
  • 2008: Google Chrome is released.

The above information can be found on: https://www.webpagefx.com/blog/web-design/the-history-of-web-browsers/

Image Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/photos/web%20browser/

 

Methods of Communication:

 

Social Networking

Social.png

We’ve all heard of social networking. Facebook is the biggest social networking site in the world. Snapchat allows you to send pictures to your friends with themes and background images built right into the app. Twitter is also another method that we use to communicate but you have to do it in 140 words or less. LinkedIn is a job networking site that lets you connect with other business professionals and has become a key resource for finding a job.

According to Audrey Willis, social media has changed the way we communicate in 6 ways. 1. Created a sense of urgency and a need to share. 2. Provided an inside perspective of faraway places. 3. Shared the full story instead of just the highlights. 4. It made digital messages more personal. 5. It brought news back into millennial life. 6. Provided the ability to broadcast moments live. You can read about each one of these in more detail by clicking on this link

Image Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/smartphone-screen-social-media-2123520/

 

Email

Email

In a world where everything is instantly at your fingertips via your smart phone or tablet, why is email still the preferred method of communication? Personally, I don’t like texting that much. I always feel like I have to respond right away plus I prefer face-to-face communication vs. texting. With email, I don’t feel a rush to respond. I can take my time to answer it and put more thought into it. According to a paper written by Kyle Emmons, “Email has some issues, but it is the most widely used, and accepted form of electronic communication. Email is tried and true. It is the de facto means of written communication – especially in business.” The rest of the paper can be found by following this link.

Image Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Email_bdtbt.png

 

Wikis and Blogs

Wiki.png

A Wiki can be edited, changed, and added to. It is usually edited by a group or team. It is used for sharing knowledge and it has links to other Wiki pages. It grows rapidly at all hours of the day because the articles change and they are continuously updated. Discussions can take place on the pages or in the discussion forum. It is an example of many-to-many communication. Wikipedia is a wiki website where you can contribute to articles on the site. Some articles even ask the users to contribute to the content of that post if they have any information that pertains to it.

A Blog will usually have a single author and it can have multiple contributors. The following happens chronologically in blogs: the posts or entries, comments on the posts, and responses to the comments. The author posts the blog and the users make their comments. It is used to share opinions. Blogs contain links to outside information. It grows much slower than a Wiki post because blogs are posted one at a time. Each post becomes stale over time. Discussions take place in the comments of a post and are typically approved by the blogger. A blog is an example of one-to-many content. Word Press is a free blogging website.

The above information can be found on this site

Image Credit: http://idratherbewriting.com/2010/11/24/forum-wiki-blog-workflow/

 

Podcasts and Webcasts

Podcasts.png

Amy Stanbrough wrote a great article on the differences between webcasts and podcasts. The information that follows is from that article. “Podcasts combine voice, music and sound effects into a composition that tells a story or expresses opinion on a social issue or trend. Some podcasts also use video. Producing a podcast requires a computer with a microphone port or attached microphone, Internet access and an editing software program like iTunes, iMovie, Movie Maker or Audacity. If you want to use video, you will also need a digital video camera.”

Amy goes on to say that, “Webcasts are a recorded event and they usually include live spectators in addition to an online audience. Webcasts might also include tools for audience interaction. The audience either watches online as the featured event occurs or downloads a recording afterward. A professional webcast would require a script, one or more digital video cameras, microphones, lights, skilled camera operators and information technology professionals to establish and stream the connection. This doesn’t mean that a webcast couldn’t be produced with less than that.” The full article can be read by clicking here.

Image Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/microphone-audio-radio-computer-639192/

 

Streaming Media

Streaming.png

Streaming refers to a compressed audio or video file that you can watch over the internet. A great example of audio streaming is Spotify and Apple Music. Both of these services require a subscription to play music over your mobile device, computer, or tablet. Spotify and Apple Music both start at 9.95 a month and go up from there to include family plans. They also include a discount for students as well. Apple Music allows you to try their service for three months at no charge. Spotify only allows you a 30-day trial. To find out more about either of these services, you can click here: Apple Music or Spotify.

Video streaming is dominated by Netflix. They started the whole video streaming and binge watching craze. Hulu, Amazon Video, and Vudu, are some other vendors that offer streaming services. Netflix and Hulu are available for a monthly subscription fee and you can binge watch unlimited TV shows and movies. Hulu even has a plan that removes ads from certain shows. Vudu and Amazon Video are services that allow you to rent or purchase movies. TV shows are available for purchase only.

For a more detailed guide on streaming services you can click here.

Image Credit: http://kenabuy.co.ke/shop/samsung-40-h-series-full-hd-smart-led-tv-ua40h5303/

 

E-commerce

E-commerce.png

E-commerce or electronic commerce refers to transacting or facilitating business on the internet. Online shopping, Electronic payments, Online auctions, Internet banking, and Online ticketing are all examples of e-commerce. Types of e-commerce include: Business to Business (B2B), Business to Consumer (B2C), and Consumer to consumer (C2C). This information came from an article written by Ajeet Khurana and can be found here. One of the primary benefits of e-commerce is that you can shop online, pay your bills, and manage your bank accounts without leaving your home. For me, the disadvantage is that sometimes I spend too much time online looking at stuff and adding it to my Amazon wish list.

Image Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:E-Commerce-Keyboard.jpg

 

M-Commerce

M-commerce

M-commerce is short for mobile commerce. It is the buying and selling of goods and services through mobile phones and other wireless handheld devices. It is also referred to as the next generation e-commerce. Major retailers have developed apps for your smart phone that allow you to shop and do your banking. The app for the Apple store allows customers to go in and pick out items, add them to their cart, and check out right from the app. They don’t even have to talk to a sales person or wait in line to check out at the register. Chick-Fil-A developed an app where you can place your order and choose how you want to get your food without having to wait in line. You can either go into the restaurant to pick up your order or you can request that they bring it to your vehicle. How cool is that?

For more information on m-commerce you can start here.

Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/joeybones/6791201819

 

I’m sure you can tell by now that social media and the internet help us accomplish multiple tasks that we perform on a daily basis. It enables us to listen to our favorite songs without having to buy an entire album. We can even go shopping from our phone and home computer without ever leaving the house. With all of these benefits, you should be asking yourself, “Why am I not using the internet?” Just think of all the ways your world can and will expand by using the tools that are available to us through the internet and social media.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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