The world wide web is now something that people take for granted; connectivity is an incredible feat of engineering success, but the ease with which we can talk to people and play games like online bingo or the latest hit-em-up gamble was merely a pipedream a few decades ago.

In the meantime, you can entertain yourself with the world wide web, whether that’s contacting, playing, or simply browsing. But, just where did this phenomenon come from?

Tim Berners-Lee

Every British citizen should, ideally, have heard of CERN employee Tim Berners-Lee – the architect of the modern internet – or what was initially called the World Wide Web. A physicist, Berners-Lee created the idea as a way of meeting the demand for sharing information between physicists in universities and institutes around the globe.

In March 1989, Berners-Lee identified the notion of millions of computers being connected together through the fast-developing internet and that they could share information by taking advantage of hypertext – a breakthrough technology.

By October 1990, Berners-Lee had noted the three fundamentals of the internet that remain the basis of today’s web. Those are HTML (HyperText Markup Language), URI (Uniform Resource Identifier) and the HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol).

HTML, first and foremost, is the formatting of language for the web. The URI, is an “address” that is unique and that identifies each resource – its name is also more commonly, a URL. And, last but not least, the HTTP enables linked resources to be accessed from across the web.

Physicist Tim also wrote the first web page editor/browser – “WorldWideWeb.app” and the first web server (“httpd”). By 1991, the first web page was delivered to the internet, and, in 1991, people outside of CERN were allowed to join the web community.

Public domain

In late April 1993, CERN made the WWW software a public commodity with an open license, ensuring the web could flourish with its saturation into everyday life. And, as the web began to grow, Berners-Lee realized that the web’s potential could only be truly unleashed if anyone could use it free of charge and whenever they liked.

Although it all seems rather simple looking back, Berners-Lee’s work revolutionized the modern era. The world wide web was an incredible creation and one which has influenced almost everything in the present age. The touch of a button can now access anything you desire in so little time.