World Wide Web comes of age

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Yesterday marked 21 years since the first page on the Internet became publicly available, the start of what has become the World Wide Web and a shift in the way people and companies communicate.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, then a scientist at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), made the first page on the World Wide Web publicly available 21 years ago on 6 August, according to V3.

Berners-Lee is a director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a Web standards organisation founded in 1994 that develops interoperable technologies such as specifications, guidelines, software, and tools.

According to his W3C profile, Berners-Lee is a graduate of Oxford University and invented the Web, an Internet-based hypermedia initiative for global information sharing, while at CERN in 1989. He wrote the first Web client and server in 1990, notes his profile.

Berners-Lee is the 3Com Founders Professor of Engineering in the School of Engineering with a joint appointment in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Laboratory for Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence (CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he also heads the Decentralised Information Group.

He is also a professor in the Electronics and Computer Science Department at the University of Southampton, UK, and a director of the World Wide Web Foundation, launched in 2009 to coordinate efforts to further the potential of the Web to benefit humanity.

According to Wikipedia, the history of the Internet began with the development of electronic computers in the 1950s. Packet-switched networks such as ARPANET, Mark I at NPL in the UK, CYCLADES, Merit Network, Tymnet, and Telenet, were developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s using a variety of protocols.

In 1982, the Internet Protocol Suite (TCP/IP) was standardised and the concept of a worldwide network of fully interconnected TCP/IP networks called the Internet was introduced, notes the online encyclopaedia.

Commercial Internet service providers began to emerge in the late 1980s and 1990s, it adds.

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