the first Polish electronic bulletin

First Polish IP LAN
and IP international connectivity

Public services
first Polish Usenet News and WWW servers


DONOSY - the first Polish electronic bulletin

In 1987 a group of high energy physicists from the Physics Faculty of the Warsaw University realized that their research at DESY (Hamburg) and CERN (Geneva) cannot be successfully continued without the computer network connectivity with Western Europe. They started to dial-up to western European research centers and exchange e-mails with their collaborators. As a by-product, the first Polish electronic bulletin "DONOSY", an informal newsletter has been created in August 1989 and appears daily up to now.  "DONOSY" has been an important source of information for Poles scattered all over the word. To allow wider circles of Polish diaspora to read the "DONOSY" an english version has been distributed in 1993-1997. Presently, there are more than 10000 subscribers.

First Polish IP LAN and IP international connectivity

Starting from 1988 scientists from Warsaw University wrote a series of formal applications to the EARN/BITNET network, which due to the COCOM restrictions have been declined. The political changes in Poland in 1989, the tedious lobbying in Washington and the petition sent to president Bush caused that in February 1990 Poland, as a first CEE country, has been accepted to EARN and connected to world's computer network.

The Physics Faculty, where students and scientists from all the Warsaw scientific community have always been welcomed, created a very friendly atmosphere for all those who wanted to access the information world-wide and were interested in emerging TCP/IP technology. In particular the IP based LAN and a computer farm, named COCOS, have been created at Physics Faculty campus in 1990. The experience gained during the creation of COCOS and the friendly relations to the world's network community lead to the creation of first Polish international IP based link.

On August 17, 1991, using the PC-based ka9q 'router', the IP 9600 bps link has been established between the Physics Faculty of the Warsaw University and the UNI-C, a Computer Center of the Copenhagen University. The staff of the Physics Faculty shared their knowledge of the TCP/IP technology with the rest of the scientific community in Poland and run DNS for .pl domain. Physicists from Warsaw University played a major role in creation of Polish Research and Academic Computer Network (NASK), which starting from 1991, in a relatively short time connected nearly all Polish universities and research institutes.

Public services - first Polish Usenet News and WWW servers

With NASK rapidly connecting universities, the number of Internet users within the scientific community started to grow exponentially. In early '90s, the Physics Faculty being a major Polish source of information on frontiers of TCP/IP technology, could not cope with the growing demand for information. This has lead to the creation in 1992 of the first Polish Usenet News server. In August 1993, the first Polish WWW server started its operation. For many years this server hosted the National Home Page of Poland, which contained a large repository of Internet related information and the data base of other emerging WWW servers. One has to stress that all those pro publico bono services were run on purely voluntary basis.

Physics Faculty welcomed also the formation of the Internet related organizations. In 1995 it hosted the first General Assembly of the "Polish Community of Internet", an organization of Polish Internauts. Several meetings of the Central and Eastern European Networking Association (CEENet) and numerous public lectures, workshops and seminars have been held at its premises.

Jacek Gajewski