III.  The Impact of the Internet

    A.  While the Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link (WELL) was established in 1985, it wasn't until 1991 
        that the National Science Foundation lifted restrictions on the commercial use of the internet.
        That same year, CERN released Tim Berner-Lee's WWW (itself envisoned since 1980 in a software 
        documentation system he wrote named "Enquire").  It wasn't until about three years later that 
        companies actually became aware of the possibilities of commerce on the internet (although the 
        World Bank was online in 1992).  But, in 1998, E-Commerce, E-Auctions, and Portals were 
        the official "Internet Technoglogies of the Year", with E-Trade and XML the official 
        "Internet Emerging Technologies".

        "A picture is worth a thousand words"

    B.  Before the Internet came along, the aspirations of supply chain software devotees were limited 
        to improving their ability to predict demand from customers and make their own supply chains 
        run more smoothly.  But the cheap, ubiquitous nature of the Internet, along with its simple, 
        universally accepted communication standards have thrown things wide open.