[lg policy] The Web @25

Baron, Dennis E debaron at ILLINOIS.EDU
Tue Mar 11 18:12:23 UTC 2014

There's a new post on the Web of Language:

The Web @25

The World Wide Web turns 25 this week. On March 12, 1989, Tim Berners-Lee wrote a short paper<http://www.w3.org/History/1989/proposal.html> called “Information Management: A Proposal” that invented the web. Berners-Lee was prompted to do this by his the need to make things more efficient at the European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN) atom smasher where he worked. The complexity of projects, combined with frequent staff turnover and general human inefficiency, meant that things got lost. Large-scale experiments were difficult to coordinate, files hard to find, information, sometimes, just plain gone. As a result, work had to be repeated and atoms resmashed, sometimes more than once.

To fix this, Berners-Lee sketched a non-hierarchical system of files stored on linked computers. Anybody could access any file, any time, or jump from file to file, not following predetermined pathways, but in any order. The system would be open and unregulated, and since the goal was to share information, not hide it, Berners-Lee didn’t care that much about locking-up the data or protecting intellectual property:

[C]opyright enforcement and data security…are of secondary importance….information exchange is still more important than secrecy.

Berners-Lee initially called his system “the Mesh.” He later changed that to the World Wide Web, a name which stuck. It took a couple of years for the web to leap off the page and become an actual information storehouse. CERN’s first web site went live<http://www.w3.org/People/Berners-Lee/WorldWideWeb.html> in 1991. Before the decade ended, the web had become indispensable, not just to atomic scientists, but to everyone.

Read the whole post on the Web of Language:  http://bit.ly/1i9w6mk

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/lgpolicy-list/attachments/20140311/fe312a86/attachment.html>
-------------- next part --------------
This message came to you by way of the lgpolicy-list mailing list
lgpolicy-list at groups.sas.upenn.edu
To manage your subscription unsubscribe, or arrange digest format: https://groups.sas.upenn.edu/mailman/listinfo/lgpolicy-list

More information about the Lgpolicy-list mailing list