Who is Tim Berners-Lee?

Sir Tim Berners-Lee
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Tim Berners-Lee (born 1955) is best known for being the person attributed with the creation of the World Wide Web. He originally came up with the idea of sharing and organizing information from any computer system in any geographical location by using a system of hyperlinks (simple textual connections that "linked" one piece of content to the next) and Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), a way that computers could receive and retrieve Web pages. Berners-Lee also created HTML (HyperText Markup Language), the standard programming language behind every Web page, as well as a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) system that gave every Web page its unique designation.

How did Tim Berners-Lee come up with the idea of the World Wide Web?

While at CERN, Tim Berners-Lee grew increasingly frustrated with how information was being shared and organized. Every computer at CERN stored different information which required unique log-ins, and not every computer could be easily accessed. This situation sparked Berners-Lee to come up with a simple proposal for information management, which was the World Wide Web.

Did Tim Berners-Lee invent the Internet?

No, Tim Berners-Lee did not invent the Internet. The Internet was created in the late 1960's as a collaborative effort between several universities and the U.S. Department of Defense (ARPANET). Tim Berners-Lee used the already existing Internet as the foundation for how the World Wide Web would function. For more on the early days of the Internet, read The History of the Internet.

What is the difference between the Internet and the World Wide Web?

The Internet is a vast network, comprised of many different computer networks and cables and wireless devices, all interconnected. The Web, on the other hand, is information (content, text, images, movies, sound, etc.) that can be found using connections (hyperlinks) that connect to other hyperlinks on the Web. We use the Internet to connect to other computers and networks; we use the Web to locate information. The World Wide Web could not exist without the Internet as its foundation.

How did the phrase "World Wide Web" come into being?

According to the official Tim Berners-Lee FAQ, the phrase "World Wide Web" was chosen for its alliterative quality and because it best described the Web's global, decentralized format (i.e., a web). Since those early days the phrase has shortened in common usage to just being referred to as the Web. 

What was the first Web page ever created?

A copy of the first Web page ever created by Tim Berners-Lee can be found at The World Wide Web Project. It's a fun way to really see how far the Web has come in just a few short years. In fact, Tim Berners-Lee used his office NeXT computer to act as the world's first web server.

What is Tim Berners-Lee up to now?

Sir Tim Berners-Lee is the Founder and Director of the World Wide Web Consortium, an organization aimed at developing sustainable Web standards. He also works as the director of the World Wide Web Foundation, a co-director of the Web Science Trust, and is a professor at the University of Southampton's Computer Science Department. A more detailed look at all of Tim Berners-Lee's involvements and awards can be found at his official biography page.

A Web Pioneer: Tim Berners-Lee

Sir Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web in 1989. Sir Tim Berners-Lee (he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 2004 for his pioneering work) originated the idea of sharing information freely via hyperlinks, created HTML (HyperText Markup Language), and came up with the idea of each Web page having a unique address, or URL (Uniform Resource Locator).