Build an Internet with the Link Lab

Learning about the Domain Name System on the model internet.

From August 1st to 5th, C4K partnered with the Link Lab at the University of Virginia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science to provide a summer camp themed Build an Internet. In the camp, C4K youth learned about how data moves around the world, how the Internet connects different devices, how addresses become names, and how to make and display webpages. 

Daily workshops were led by Dr. Brad Campbell and a group of Link Lab graduate students. We started with physical simulations of core internet standards and technologies to learn how they set the foundation for the services we use every day. We then moved to configuring devices and creating websites to recreate an early internet in our own Clubhouse.

Using note cards to simulate establishing connections with the TCP Handshake.

We simulated how connections are made between devices with the TCP Handshake using note cards. Members acted as routers on a network to see how data moves between devices. They walked through the process of matching a domain name to an IP address in the Domain Name System. And, they worked in teams to configure their own wireless router to connect to a model internet.

Members use routing tables to learn how data moves around the network.

Throughout the week long camp, the group was able to have discussions about network resiliency, cybersecurity, standards bodies, and career paths for those interested in these technologies.