Packets, packets, got your packets here!
Going way back into the ‘what is the internet?’ file, here’s a great article about the actual first pitch and live demo of the internet (then called by it’s acronym ARPANET).
Yes, it did crash once. Yes, some people left the event convinced the technology was going nowhere. And yes, it was another decade of development before anyone outside of computer science departments heard about it.
I wasn’t even born when that demo took place, and wouldn’t get online for myself until 1986. Hard to believe the net has been in development for 40 years already!