March 25th, 2014 will mark the 25th anniversary of the Word Wide Web (WWW). Tim Berners-Lee wrote a paper on March 12, 1989 that provided the concept and structure for what we would come to know as the Web. The original working title was a little different. On the w3.org site Sir Tim is quoted: “This document was an attempt to persuade CERN management that a global hypertext system was in CERN's interests. Note that the only name I had for it at this time was "Mesh" -- I decided on "World Wide Web" when writing the code in 1990.”
You can see his original proposal here on the W3 site. Sir Tim would later go on to write the code for the first web browser, web page and server.
Couple of interesting points to note here.
First, did you know that the World Wide Web is not the original www ? The first industry to lay claim to that title was the radio business when it was known as the World Wide Wireless.
Secondly, the World Wide Web is not the Internet.
While we all use the terms Web and Internet interchangeably the fact of the matter is that they are not. I thank my former colleague Karin Pfaff for educating me on that back in 1999 when we were both at Prodigy Internet. To sum it up, the Internet is a network of networks governed by a set of rules that allow them to communicate with each other. The World Wide Web is a service that uses this network of networks, allowing computers (like yours right now) to access web pages hosted by other computers.
Pew Internet, is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the WWW with a series of reports this year. You can read the first one The Web at 25 in the US on their site.
A very happy 25th birthday to the World Wide Web and a very big thank you to Sir Tim Berners-Lee for this world changing work he produced.