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Thomas Bnt
Thomas Bnt

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World Wide Web

<p class="thirty-fourth">Happy Anniversary World Wide Web ! 🥳</p>
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Yes, today this is the 34th anniversary ! What better way than to write and share her story with you on the same day. 😍

Before we continue to the history, some words of Tim :

Well, I found it frustrating that in those days, there was different information on different computers, but you had to log on to different computers to get at it.
Tim Berners-Lee

The creation of the Web

The World Wide Web (WWW) was created by Tim Berners-Lee on 12 March 1989.

He wanted to find the simplest way to communicate across the world to facilitate collaboration between researchers at CERN. The project was originally named Mesh, which refers to... a mesh network. It was changed because it was complex to understand and too technical for the public.
So it turned into the WWW that we know now, which makes it easier to remember. Not to mention that we also use it for domain names like

Just before this creation, there was already a project called ENQUIRE. Developed by the same person in 1980. It was an information management system based on hyperlinks and interconnected nodes, which allowed users to navigate between linked documents.

The exact date of the creation of the WWW is based on the proposal entitled Information Management: A Proposal. (Read the file right here)

Information Management: A Proposal, March 1989 by Tim Berners-Lee.

When you are a programmer, and you solve one problem and then you solve one that's very similar, you often think, "Isn't there a better way? Can't we just fix this problem for good?" That became "Can't we convert every information system so that it looks like part of some imaginary information system which everyone can read?" And that became the WWW.
Tim Berners-Lee

Among those involved in the creation of the WWW was Robert Cailliau, who worked with Berners-Lee to develop the first version of the Web.

The WorldWideWeb browser

In 1990, the WorldWideWeb browser was created. This is the first Web browser of the world.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary (in 2019) of the project, you can see how it was made.

The WorldWideWeb browser

Unbounded opportunity... limited only by your imagination.
— Tim Berners-Lee

Where does the term Hypertext come from?

Hypertext, which can be found in HTTP or HTML, was not created by the same person.
It was invented by Ted Nelson in 1965 to describe a method of presenting information in the form of interactive links. It was designed to make it easier for us to navigate between documents.

  • Hyper → Greater than. Describes the INNOVATIVE nature of this technology.
  • text → Reference to information contained in electronic documents.

At the time of writing, the term HyperText is used to describe a variety of things, including websites, PDF documents, electronic documents and databases.

Hypertext is text displayed on a computer display or other electronic devices with references (hyperlinks) to other text that the reader can immediately access. Hypertext documents are interconnected by hyperlinks, which are typically activated by a mouse click, keypress set, or screen touch. Apart from text, the term "hypertext" is also sometimes used to describe tables, images, and other presentational content formats with integrated hyperlinks. Hypertext is one of the key underlying concepts of the World Wide Web, where Web pages are often written in the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). As implemented on the Web, hypertext enables the easy-to-use publication of information over the Internet.

The first web server

The first web server was set up by Tim Berners-Lee in 1991 at CERN in Switzerland, on a NeXT personal computer. This web server was used to host the first public website, which presented information about the World Wide Web project and how to use the system.
We can no longer access the website, however this is the replica of the page that is accessible.

The replica of the first webpage

TLDR: The first NeXT web server at CERN in 1991.

How does the Web work?

The Web has a protocol for retrieving pages. Your browser is the one that will display the page with its HTML and CSS.

🤔 But how do we get it all back? Thanks to the HTTP protocol known as hypertext transfer.

The server to which you will request the page, has, like any Client, an identification, and on the Internet, this identification is called IP. It only contains numbers like (Example of a local IP), but to better access it without necessarily remembering the IP each time, we use Domain Names (Example:
This is cleaner and easier to remember for everyone. Behind all this, we actually have a domain name translation management system, it is called DNS.

Is the Web a good thing?

I personally liked what Tim Berners-Lee wrote on his FAQ page for children. The fact that an innovative thing like the Web can provide good things, as well as bad things. It's what we humans do with it that's important.

Some people point out that the Web can be used for all the wrong things. For downloading pictures of horrible, gruesome, violent or obscene things, or ways of making bombs which terrorists could use.
Other people say how their lives have been saved because they found out about the disease they had on the Web, and figured out how to cure it.
I think the main thing to remember is that any really powerful thing can be used for good or evil. Dynamite can be used to build tunnels or to make missiles. Engines can be put in ambulances or tanks. Nuclear power can be used for bombs or for electrical power.
So what is made of the Web is up to us. You, me, and everyone else.
Tim Berners-Lee

A short recap of the story

A timeline of some important dates about Internet and the Web

We can also mark other dates:

  • 1991: The Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is published for the first time.
  • 1993: The Mosaic Web browser is launched, popularising the use of the Web among the general public.
  • 1994: Netscape Communications Corporation is founded and releases its web browser Netscape Navigator.
  • 1995: Microsoft launches its Web browser, Internet Explorer.
  • 1998: The first Google search engine is launched.
  • 2000: The Web evolves towards more interactive use with the emergence of technologies such as JavaScript and AJAX.


  • DNS - Domain Name Servers
  • IP - Internet Protocole
  • HTTP - Hypertext Transfer Protocol
  • ARPANET - Advanced Research Projects Agency Network

Some good links to known more about the Web.

Also What is a Web Server and how do Web Browsers communicate with it? by @leduc1901. And this is explain on MDN What is a web server?


The image of this post was taken from CERN: The birth of the Web page.

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Top comments (11)

krlz profile image
krlz • Edited

The World Wide Web is a fascinating journey from static web pages to the dynamic and interactive experience we have today. Web 2.0 brought the ability for users to generate and share content, while mobile devices forced the web to become mobile-first. And now, with Web 3.0 on the horizon, we're on the cusp of an even more exciting era.

With AI we'll see more personalized online experiences and chatbots that can communicate with us like real people. Plus, virtual and augmented reality, blockchain, and the Internet of Things are all poised to revolutionize the web yet again. It's an exciting time to be part of the world wide web!

thomasbnt profile image
Thomas Bnt

Yeah it's so cool to participate of this evolution! 🥳🙌

raibtoffoletto profile image
Raí B. Toffoletto

Thanks for the detailed article 🎉 It's always good to remember those days. www went public in Brazil in 95 and I still remember how happy my father was in 96 to get a provider and ditch BBS😅. Now it connects everything. I wonder in 30y how everything will evolve.

thomasbnt profile image
Thomas Bnt

I'm glad you liked the post !
I really enjoyed learning more about the story. And it's always cool to celebrate! 🥳

demkantor profile image

Maybe that p tag should have a class of thirty-fourth instead of 34th or you'll have to escape that leading number in order to apply css 🤗
Nice article though!

thomasbnt profile image
Thomas Bnt

Ooooh yeah thanks 😱
Also thanks for reading the post!

yoni333 profile image
yehonatan yehezkel

Amazing article

thomasbnt profile image
Thomas Bnt

Thanks you for your comment! Really appreciated! 🙌

fruntend profile image

Сongratulations 🥳! Your article hit the top posts for the week -
Keep it up 👍

thomasbnt profile image
Thomas Bnt


mrdev88 profile image
Mahdi Ruiz