12 Astonishing Facts about the World Wide Web

12 Astonishing Facts about the World Wide Web
  • 12 Astonishing Facts about the World Wide Web

These bits of information are probably something you haven’t been aware of. They may surprise, shock or amuse you, and will definitely make you look at the web from a different angle.

Since the 1960's, when the Internet started as merely a military experiment, it has grown into an enormous organism that’s alive and full of subcultures and various oddities. The World Wide Web started seeing enormous growth almost immediately after its launch and continues to grow to this day. 

We won’t give away any secrets here, but will share some strange and remarkable facts about the Internet that you probably had no idea about. That will give you some food for thought or a topic to break ice in a conversation. So here goes…

1. The Internet Uses about 50 Million Hp in Electricity

There are about 8.7 billion electronic devices that are connected to the Internet at any given moment, so this huge system requires substantial electricity to run even for just a day. Supported by calculations by Michael Stevens, Russell Seitz states that 50 million brake horsepower worth of electricity is needed to ensure that the Internet will keep running in the state it’s in at the moment.

2. A Single Email Message Uses 2 Billion Electrons to Be Produced.

Michael Stevens concludes, based on Vsauce calculations, that a 50-kb email message has a footprint of about 8 billion electrons. Does the number sound huge? Even though it does, when you consider that each electron hardly has any weight, you will understand that this 50-kb message weighs less than a quadrillionth of an ounce.

3. More than 2.4 Billion People out of the 7 Billion on Our Planet Use the Internet

Although it is hard to confirm the exact numbers when they refer to people living in so many different corners of the world, most of the statistics prove that over 2 billion people use the Web at least on a weekly basis. 

4. All of the Internet Equals One Single Strawberry in Weight

Being a physicist, Russel Seitz did some precise calculations based on atomic physics and concluded that the billions of moving electrons that comprise the so called “data in motion” on the Internet weigh a total of only about 50 grams.  That is about the same as one single strawberry. Isn’t that amazing?

5. More than 10 Billion Devices Are Connected to the Internet Right Now.

That includes tablets, smartphones, desktops and laptops, wrist watches, servers, hotspots and wireless routers, car GPS units, even refrigerators and soda pop machines. As more and more web-enabled gadgets are invented and manufactured, experts expect this number to grow to as many as 40 billion devices by 2020.

6. Users Upload 72 Hours of Video to YouTube Every 60 Seconds

And as you may expect, the majority of those files are cat videos, Harlem Shake dance moves and other stuff like that. People all over the world like to post their home-made videos and they don’t care if no one wants to watch them or even expect those videos to go viral and bring them worldwide recognition. 

7. Each Electron Gets to Travel Only a Few Dozen Meters on the Internet.

Did you realize that? When data is sent over the net, each electron doesn't get to go very far along the wires. Electrons travel just about a dozen meters to the next machine, where their energy is consumed and the signal is transferred to the adjacent set of electrons. This cycle repeats many times down the chain until the signal reaches its destination, and it’s hard to imagine that this all happens within fractions of seconds. 

8. About 89% of North Americans Use the Internet

Considering that the Internet started in the USA, it’s no surprise that approximately 89% of people in North America are using it according to 2016 stats. It has become an indispensable part of everyday life for a vast majority of Canadian and US residents, and most people simply can’t imagine life without the Internet now. However, most Internet users are not based in North America, as the American 89% is under 400,000 people, while the Internet is used by 2.4 billion people worldwide. Where are the rest located?

9. There Are 1.8 Billion Internet Users in Asia

Yes, you rea it right. More than half of the world’s Internet users are located somewhere in Asia. The highest adoption rates are in Japan and South Korea, closely followed by India, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and Singapore. This explains why there is an ever-growing number of webpages published on the web in these Asian languages. However, English still remains the predominant language online.

10. South Korea and Japan Have the Best Connected Cities

You may be surprised to find out that it’s not the United States that gets to enjoy the fastest connection speeds. The Internet cables infrastructure and the wireless signal is the best and the fastest in the Asian countries of South Korea and Japan. Users there get to experience average bandwidth speeds of 22 Mbps, while US users only get an average of 8.4 Mbps.

11.  Media Streaming and File Sharing Account for More than Half of Web Traffic

Media files include video, music and other similar content. Those files are usually quite large, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that they take up a lot of traffic. File sharing also includes torrent sites that allow P2P sharing of all kinds of files, such as movies, music, software, photos, books and a lot more. Those are the sites that Internet users go to for free software, freebie games and other such things. There are also online TV and radio channels that let you stream their broadcasts. Internet users want to get and share media all the time, which explains the fact that media and file sharing and streaming make up over half of all traffic on the World Wide Web.

12. More than 2 Billion Dollars is Generated by Online Dating Each Year in the USA Alone

Online dating has definitely gone mainstream and continues to grow at a rapid pace every year. The USA is at the forefront of this trend, with 15% of adults there having used dating sites or apps. Although other countries are significantly behind, we can still say that the value of the Internet for finding love or friendship has been accepted worldwide, and people are becoming more at peace with the idea of spending money on it. This has led to about 2 billion dollars in revenue being generated by the online dating industry in the USA each year. Quite impressive!

Next time you go online for a free software download, to use a dating site, or to watch a movie, think about the above facts and know that you are contributing to these statistics.  

Source: Lifewire.com

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