Financial News

  • 12 March 2014, 16:20

World Wide Web Celebrates 25 Years

The World Wide Web - which revolutionised how the world communicates - turns 25 today.

It was on March 12, 1989 that Sir Tim Berners-Lee - working at the Swiss physics laboratory Cern - presented a technical paper with the blueprint for the web.

The response from his boss: "Vague, but exciting."

Professor Fionn Murtagh, head of computer science at De Montfort University, said: "It changed the world, and all of this came from academia."

The web allows people to access files on servers around the world using a computer browser, making it easy to navigate between them using clickable links.

A key feature of the web is that it works on various computer operating systems.

Sir Tim pressed the idea with Cern by compiling an online telephone directory for the laboratory, and they eventually adopted it.

It also received a boost when US vice president Al Gore urged government agencies in Washington to use the system.

Prof Murtagh said: "The web made the transfer and sharing of documents quicker and easier, and it still does the same today.

"When Marc Andreessen created the first web browser - Mosaic - in 1993 it captured everyone's imagination. People really started to think about the possibilities that were in store."

He added: "Before browsers there were search mechanisms such as WAIS, then in the '90s search engines like Google helped to make the information on the web more easily accessible."

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