Canada Day – three ways Canada changed the internet

Canada Day – three ways Canada changed the internet

There must be something about cold northern climates that encourages innovation, as the nation of Canada has a proud history of invention to rival that of Scotland.

In particular, Canada is known for its contributions to communications. Alexander Graham Bell, though born in Scotland, lived for most of his adult life in Canada, and it was there that he invented the telephone, and later co-created the gramophone. Other Canadians followed this up with the invention of the walkie-talkie in the 20th century, and creations like newsprint, computerised Braille, the pager and more recently the Blackberry are further examples of how the country has furthered communications.

For Canada Day, we thought we’d look at some Canadian creations our work at Engage Web would look very different without.

1. Search engines

California may be home to Google and the Silicon Valley today, but what is thought of as being the first search engine was created north of the border.

In 1990, McGill University graduate Alan Emtage launched Archie, a tool for searching through and identifying FTP files. This work paved the way for Yahoo! and later Google to create the search engines we use today.

2. 56K modem

Anyone who remembers mid-1990s internet should be eternally grateful to Canadian electrical engineer Dr. Brent Townshend. In 1996, he introduced the 56K modem, which improved performance by around 66% compared to previous modems.

3. Java

It might not be something we think about during everyday browsing, but the programming language Java is used heavily for client-server web applications, and is crucial to the way Android phones operate.

It was founded by Calgary-born computer scientist James Gosling, who today is often nicknamed ‘Dr. Java’.

At Engage Web, we’re delighted to have clients in Canada, and great Canadian inventions available to help us support them. Wherever you are in the world, or wherever your target audience is, speak to us to learn how to generate more business online.

Content Team Leader at Engage Web
John works for Engage Web as a Content Team Leader and regularly contributes to the website and programmes of his beloved Chester F.C.
John Murray

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