In the mid-1970s, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) became interested in establishing a packet-switched network to provide communications between research institutions in the United States. DARPA and other government organizations understood the potential of packet-switched technology and were just beginning to face the problem virtually all companies with networks now have—communication between dissimilar computer systems.
With the goal of heterogeneous connectivity in mind, DARPA funded research by Stanford University and Bolt, Beranek, and Newman (BBN) to create a series of communication protocols. The result of this development effort, completed in the late 1970s, was the Internet Protocol suite, of which the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the Internet Protocol (IP) are the two best known protocols.
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