Twenty years ago today, the World Wide Web, also known as “the web”, was born at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research. This event should not be confused with the Internet’s birth. According to the World Wide Web Consortium’s website, the World Wide Web is “an internet-based hypermedia initiative for global information sharing”. Tim Berners-Lee is credited with the invention of the web, along with scientist Robert Cailliau.
Berners-Lee envisioned the concept of using hypertext to help researchers share information over the internet. According to Wikipedia, he proposed ” to build a hypertext project” called “WorldWideWeb” (one word, also “W3″) as a ‘web’ of ‘hypertext documents’ to be viewed by browsers, using a clientserver architecture.” Berners-Lee used a computer called NeXT as the world’s first web server. On August 6, 1991, “the web” made its public debut.
Today, the World Wide Web Consortium, or W3C, as it is often called, sets the standards for “web” development. Tim Berners-Lee is still very active in the development of “the web” and is the Director of W3C. He was Knighted in 2004 by Queen Elizabeth. He also directs the Web Science Trust and The World Wide Web Foundation.
“The web” has transformed into a medium for the endless sharing of ideas, entertainment, and commerce. Could the men who set this idea in motion ever have envisioned the powerful influence it has become today? So today, when you check up on friends half-way around the globe on Facebook, or catch the latest gossip on some news website, take a moment to wish “the web” a very happy twentieth birthday!