The Web And How People Are Marking its 30th Birthday

Sir Tim Berners-Lee helped build World Wide Web at CERN 30 years ago. Though just a concept in a paper named “Information Management: A Proposal”, Berners-Lee suggested sharing data across networks which would later become the Web.

The Internet already existed at this point, with concepts of wide area networking emerging from computer science labs in the UK, US, and France as early as the 1950s. Various data packet switching networks were developed in the 1960s, though ARPANET established itself as a core technical foundation for Internet at this time.

Separately, Sir Berners-Lee created ENQUIRE in the 1980s. This was a simple hypertext software program that embodied some core ideas as the Web and is widely regarded as the its predecessor.

Skip forward to the Nighties and there are several successful but self-contained networks, which makes up the Internet of today - though they have been built upon and expanded exponentially.

What the Web did was create identifiers to access existing information. This is where Uniform Resource Locators - or, URLs - come into play and, of course, additional tools such as web browsers. All information is interlinked in the Web through, you guessed it, hyperlinks.

This is what makes it navigational and explains the existence of the Dark Web - an overlay network of pages that can often only be accessed via a direct link through specific software.

The World Wide Web and the Internet are generally thought of as the same thing, or concept - the terms are often used interchangeably. But evidently, they are very different from one another.

The most simple way to think about it is that the internet is a network of networks - the infrastructure - while the web is the collection of information - essentially, the service - which is accessed via the internet.

Despite its complexities, the Web is a central point in modern life. It has become a public square in which we all engage with one another and consume content.

Whether you’re a large corporate, start-up or kid blogging in your room, the Web is yours. It provides an equal and unprecedented platform of opportunity for education, exploration and everyone’s voices to be heard. At its core, the Web connects hardware, software and people.

The protection of an open and free Web is something Sir Berners-Lee has stood behind since its creation, going on to direct World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a place to agree on web standards, and found the Web Foundation.

And in that spirit, here are our favorite Tweets celebrating #Web30 #ForTheWeb.

I’m taking a 30-hour journey with @webfoundation to celebrate the web’s 30th birthday.

First stop @CERN — where it all began.

We’ll be visiting London, UK today and finishing in Lagos, Nigeria tomorrow.

Follow the celebrations at #Web30 #ForTheWeb.

— Tim Berners-Lee (@timberners_lee) March 12, 2019

In 1990 @timberners_lee and I attended the first European hypertext conference ECHT’90 in Paris. Here is Tim explaining the WWW concept to my colleagues Andrew Fountain & Ian Heath with Robert Cailliau in the background. Photo by @benbendc #Web30 #ForTheWeb #Happy30thbirthday

— Wendy Hall (@DameWendyDBE) March 12, 2019

In 1991 I attended ACM Hypertext’91 in San Antonio, Texas as did @timberners_lee and Robert Cailliau. Here is the famous photo of Tim demoing the Web at conference (no Internet connection of course!) We were demoing Microcosm a few booths down #web30 #ForTheWeb

— Wendy Hall (@DameWendyDBE) March 12, 2019

📺 A brief history of the World Wide Web #web30

— CERN (@CERN) March 8, 2019

Now that I’m 18 years old, it’s *perfectly* acceptable for me to attend the birthday shindigs of my older, more, don’t mind me if I humblebrag about being live at #Web30, aka the 30th Anniversary of the World Wide Web.

— Wikipedia (@Wikipedia) March 12, 2019

The Web Proposal. 1989 by @timberners_lee #Web30

— Aziz Alto (@AzizAlto) March 12, 2019

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