The World Wide Web is celebrating its birthday. Thirty years ago, at CERN, Tim Berners-Lee first proposed an information system that would be able to link documents on different servers together using hypertext. For many people, the Internet and WWW pretty much mean the same thing, but there was in fact an Internet before the Web: people would send e-mails, discuss in newsgroups, read documents using Gopher or search FTP servers using Archie. However, it’s fair to say that without the Web, the Internet would never have grown into the force it is today.
The Web has brought us many good things, like e-commerce, social media and funny cat videos, but recently we’re beginning to see more of a dark side too: more and more of our life is being controlled by a few giant online corporations, we’re reading fake news, our privacy is at risk and hackers are after us. So, what can we expect for the next few years?
Tim Berners-Lee actually has some great ideas on that, as he explains in the Guardian: “The web is for everyone,” he says, “and collectively we hold the power to change it. It won’t be easy. But if we dream a little and work a lot, we can get the web we want.”