25 Years of the World Wide Web
In the world of technology today, there is nothing that has been more impactful; nor as ubiquitous as the World Wide Web. As of now, the internet has become such an important part of people’s lives to the point that it is a necessity in order to function in the world today. There are no other tools more widely used in people’s everyday life. In fact, no technology has evolved so much; nor so fast as the internet and the World Wide Web. So let us take a look at the changes to the web over 25 years.
The World Wide Web was first conceptualized by Tim Berners-Lee at CERN in 1989. By 1991, the first web page went live on a NeXt system.
The web browser, Mosaic, popularized the web in 1993. This was the first browser to gain popular acceptance. The image below is using the Mosaic browser. Mosaic allowed for pictures to be displayed in line with text; and the first browser intended for novices.
By the mid-1990s, websites adapted to a table based set up. This began competitive web design as developers tried to create the most ‘high tech’ looking website. This era saw the first hit counters and online site builders—it was still mostly text—although animations allowed for scrolling and flying text. Designers, at the time, put a lot of focus on the use of colored text to stimulate visitors.
The late 1990s saw the age of Flash and more user accessible website creation that made websites look more exciting, which led to some of the ugliest websites ever seen. This opened the door to the field of professional web design and the beginning of interactive links; moreover, the start of PHP3.
The year 2000 began the rise of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). CSS allowed developers to separate layout from content that saved a lot of code. Developers could store CSS in a separate file, which could be applied uniformly across an entire website. This led to a more uniform style.
The present web 2.0 saw the change from static web pages to more dynamic, user-generated content, and the growth of social media and e-commerce. Even today, the internet and the web are changing so fast that the latest in web technology will be obsolete tomorrow. Who knows what tomorrow’s web will bring.
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