It was born 40 years ago, in a lab at the University of California, Los Angeles. Today it wraps the entire planet and features in the daily routine of more than 1.5 billion people. Of course, it's easy to take the internet for granted and forget that it's very much a work in progress. So what forces are shaping it, how big has it grown, and will it ever evolve a mind of its own? To find out, New Scientist posed eight simple questions.Who controls the internet?
Could the net become self-aware?
How big is the internet?
Is there only one internet?
Is the net caught in the credit crunch?
Where are the net's dark corners?
Is the net hurting the environment?
Could we shut the net down?