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nginx (pronounced "engine x") is a free open source web server written by Igor Sysoev, a Russian software engineer.
Thus, when server hardware, operating systems and network resources ceased to be major constraints for website growth, web developers worldwide started to look around for a more efficient means of running web servers.
Although Apache provided a solid foundation for future development, it was architected to spawn a copy of itself for each new connection, which was not suitable for nonlinear scalability of a website.
Eventually Apache became a general purpose web server focusing on having many different features, a variety of third-party extensions, and universal applicability to practically any kind of web application development.
Security aspects of running online business have also significantly changed.
Accordingly, websites are now much more complex than before, and generally require a lot more engineering efforts to be robust and scalable.
These days the Internet is so widespread and ubiquitous it's hard to imagine it wasn't exactly there, as we know it, a decade ago.