Today is World Wide Web day! What started with a vision for universality and connectivity, quickly turned into one of the largest platforms of communication used today.
In 1989, British scientist, Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. The Web was originally developed to aid in information sharing between scientists at universities around the world. The first web browser ever created, was the WorldWideWeb, which later got renamed Nexus to differentiate from the actual World Wide Web. Over the next few years Tim developed the foundation of today’s Web: HTML, URL, and HTTP. Jump ahead a few years to 1993, the World Wide Web software was placed in public domain because Tim thought that the full potential of his invention would only happen if everyone, everywhere was allowed to use it for free. This was also the year that the first web browser that allowed images, Mosaic, was founded.
Throughout the 90’s there was a widely know competition in the browser world known as the Browser Wars. After Netscape had founded Mosaic, Microsoft shortly after released their browser known as Internet Explorer. By mid 1995, Netscape jumped to having 80% market share. While both companies worked rapidly to come out with the next best version, Microsoft started to quickly push ahead. With the release of Internet Explorer 3.0, Microsoft included this version, for free, with the Windows ’95 operating system. By 1998 Microsoft has risen to 50% of the market share and by the following year, they claimed 80%. In ’98 Netscape was sold to AOL which led to Microsoft having almost complete control of the market. In 2000 it was founded in court that they were abusing a monopoly position, but that was later overturned. The Browser wars were down by early 2000’s, but then came more competition for Microsoft. Today, Microsoft still holds their ground still having one of the top browsers.
By January 1993, there were 50 web servers; April, the Web was made available royalty free; December, there were 10,000 servers and 10 million users. In 1994, known as the “Year of the Web,” Tim founded a worldwide community, created for developing open web standards known as, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). This was also the year that the concept behind the first large commercial site, Amazon, was developed. Four years later, in ’98 there were 750,000 commercial sites on the World Wide Web. By the Web’s 25thbirthday, almost 2 in every 5 people in the world were using it. Throughout the years the Web has taken leaps and bounds to develop into what it is today. Each year, new advancements are made and the Web continues to grow in ways we once never thought possible. Check out the infographic above to see today’s World Wide Web in numbers.