From instant Olympic results to talking to family online, the world wide web has changed our lives forever.
This week marks the 21st anniversary of the web, one of the crucial parts of the cyberspace jigsaw.
To call it a brave new world is now old hat, as we take the internet for granted. But at the start of the 1990s people queued for the information they can now get online.
"You saw people were queuing up just to get information. It didn't take much to say 'how could we change this and get rid of queues or shorten queues," Richard Naylor, former IT Manager at Wellington City Council, told TV ONE's Close Up.
Wellington Council was a trailblazer and had already linked computers with the regional council and university.
"That was the internet, a network of networks," Naylor said.
But they wanted to link it to the public too - a world first. Naylor said they had some spare modems at the council and offered free dial in.
People lapped it up, even though what they got "would have been boring council documents, bylaws and the district plan online," Naylor said.
International feedback was more exciting and that's when "the penny dropped" and they realised this was going to change things, he said.
The world wide web was only possible because of the internet and it got things buzzing.
"It was text only. From those humble beginnings, bit by bit, feature by feature it's got better in every way," Nat Torkington, a New Zealand internet pioneer, told Close Up online from San Francisco.
And in the US, Steve Wozniak of Apple was getting excited.
"My gosh, they even had live video stuff," he told the programme.
The first major act to perform live was The Rolling Stones. But before them, Naylor said, history was made by the Tawa schools music festival.
They sang "I'd like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony" online.
"We had 16 viewers in 12 countries and it was really tiny. But people watched it just so they could say they saw a picture and it moved," Naylor said.
"This would have been the first live event on the web in New Zealand."
But new frontiers also brought new fears, as bomb recipes were listed and pornography took off quickly.
Other uses were not so fast. Wozniak said he thought online
sales would catch on from the start but friends told him "you don't
want to buy anything because people will get your credit card
He said he found a place that would sell him coffee in Hawaii "and I'm like 'oh my God I'm going to be one of the first to buy something on the internet'."
Naylor said if TV was taken away, young people would go and watch something on the internet.
But if the internet was gone tomorrow they'd get really grumpy.
"They would wonder what to do with themselves."