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Chapter 29. What is the Internet? > Internet Service Providers

Internet Service Providers

So how do you get to the Internet and the World Wide Web? You need a computer, a modem, a browser, and an Internet Service Provider.

You see, there are many thousands of special computers around the world hooked into the Internet 24 hours a day that act as “nodes,” or connection points, that redistribute Internet connections to people like you and me. These companies are Internet Service Providers, or ISPs. From your home or business, you need to pay a provider to provide you with a connection to the Internet. You pay them; they give you any necessary software, instructions for connecting, and if necessary (for phone modems) a local phone number. In the case of a phone modem, you’ll have your modem dial the phone number; that puts your computer in touch with your provider’s computer and its Internet connection; and you can go anywhere in the world from there, on a local phone call. It’s truly amazing.


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