TV. But to everyone else, the Internet proves that magic is real (Hogwarts Schmogwarts). If you discovered the World Wide Web during the ’90s, you’ll recognize these 12 defining moments from Internet days gone by—can’t promise you’ll miss them, though.
1. When your computer made that god-awful sound while connecting to the Internet.
2. When you needed to make a phone call but someone in your house was already online.
3. When you surfed websites written in fluorescent Comic Sans and didn’t even care.
4. When you did your Internet business on AOL or Netscape Navigator.
5. When you installed your browser with a CD-ROM because it didn’t come preloaded onto your computer.
6. When you typed search terms into AltaVista, Infoseek, or Magellan because Google wasn’t a thing yet.
7. When your search results measured in the hundreds or thousands—not millions.
8. When you forwarded deleted your first email chain letter.
9. When you tried to pick ClassClown as your IM screenname and had to go with ClassClown24642 instead.
10. When you discovered Napster and it took all night to download three songs.
11. When half the country freaked out because Al Gore said he created the Internet.
12. When rumors of broadband—which offered more than quadruple the standard dial-up speed of 56Kbps—spread throughout the land.
The Internet’s come a long way. It’s nice to be in a decade when the standard Internet speed, 1.5Mbps, is 2,700% faster than it used to be—even when you’re just using it to derp around in the waiting room before your doctor’s appointment.
Has your Internet lag got you feeling like you’re stuck in the ’90s? You’ve got choices.