I built my first website almost exactly 20 years ago. It’s easy to forget how much has changed in the two decades since.

20 years ago we already had Apple, Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Netflix, and many of the giants that run today’s world wide web. But regardless of the many familiar logos, the internet was a very different back then. It’s fun to take a look back and be reminded how much has changed.

20 years ago, in 2002…

There was no WordPress. WordPress.org wouldn’t launch until 2003, and when it did it looked like this:

Social media barely existed. MySpace and Facebook didn’t exist yet. We were using things like Xanga:

HTTPS was rare. Even online shopping and banking websites didn’t default to HTTPS.

The homepage of BankofAmerica.com used HTTP:

So did Amazon’s homepage:

Gmail didn’t exist yet but at least there was MSN Hotmail. I’d forgotten about that butterfly logo!

And of course, who could forget AOL!? “You’ve Got Mail!”

As I mentioned above, Netflix did exist, but there was no streaming yet. It was DVD by mail only. Good thing the movies looked better than their web design!

Many of the providers that run large swathes of the modern internet didn’t exist yet:

  • AWS
  • Google Cloud
  • Microsoft Azure
  • Cloudflare
  • Shopify

GoDaddy did exist, but man did it look different!

The internet really has come a long way in the past 20 years…it’s going to be interesting to see what it looks like after 20 more years!

Adam Thompson

Leave A Comment

Recommended Posts