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Tim Berners-Lee & the World Wide Web

Updated on June 17, 2015
Tim Berners Lee
Tim Berners Lee | Source

The Briton who shaped today's world

We should all deliver a hearty message of thanks to Tim Berners-Lee.That's because it's thanks to him that you're reading this. If you checked your email today, looked up something on a search engine, checked your online bank, placed an order online, wandered onto Facebook or did hundreds of other things that we do every day, then Berners-Lee is the person responsible.

The man who shaped our world

He was still in his early thirties when, as a computer scientist, he thought about all the data that was housed in all the computers in the world and wondered what it would be like if they were all hooked up and that information was available to all. Not just to politicians, scientists, computer experts or world leaders but to us - you and me.

Helping people work together

What comes across so strongly in this book is the author's modesty; he says that the necessary components were already there and 'all' he had to do was to put them together. The other aspect you'll notice is his vision. He wanted to create the world wide web not as a tool for computer experts or geeks, but for ordinary people so that they could help each other.

Can you imagine life without it?

Think about the things we take for granted now; developments that would have seemed like pure science fiction to our grandparents or even parents. My grandmother never quite got used to the telephone. Today, grandparents all over the world chat with, email and see photographs of their grandchildren no matter where they are in the world. My granddaughter who is eight can email her great-granddad who is ninety.

Honored

We are privileged to live in the times we do. And Tim Berners-Lee has been honored for the way in which he has enhanced our lives. The man who, as small boy in London, taught himself about electronics by playing with a train set, is now a Knight of the British Empire. Oh, and thanks to him, you can easily order his book from this very page :)


For everyone

You may remember the Olympic Opening Ceremony in London back in 2012.

Unfortunately, the American TV channels chopped it to bits and there were some lovely sections that were cut out of the live coverage. One of these was the clip you see below.

The Olympics that year were hailed as the first social media Olympics and the person who developed the opening extravaganza, Danny Boyle, created it as a showcase of British history and achievement.

The clip you see below is poor quality but you'll see Tim Berners-Lee live onstage sitting with an elderly computer. He sends message to Twitter which is displayed throughout the stadium instantly:

THIS IS FOR EVERYONE.

See pages from the book

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© 2013 Jackie Jackson

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    • BritFlorida profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Jackson 

      4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @sousababy: It has opened up so many opportunities for so many people.

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 

      4 years ago

      We are able to help "right some wrongs" in this world thanks to Berners-Lee's vision and diligence. It's become somewhat a battlefield (in some areas of the world) but I think many are working behind the scenes for the greater good (I hope). It's certainly helped scientists collaborate.

    • BritFlorida profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Jackson 

      4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Erin Mellor: Well put, Erin. And 'mangled' is definitely the right description.

    • Erin Mellor profile image

      Erin Mellor 

      4 years ago from Europe

      I love Tim Berners-Lee's approach, he's so laid back, about how he changed the world. The mangling of the Olympic coverage on US TV was terrible - never let art or sport get in the way of a pointless celebrity interview or a commercial break.

    • BritFlorida profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Jackson 

      4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @marsha32: I might be the eternal optimist but I do believe that largely it is used for good reasons.(Although there are some aspects that most of us would rather see go, if you know what I mean). Personally, with my family being 3,000 miles away, I very much appreciate it.

    • profile image

      marsha32 

      4 years ago

      The internet should be used for good. It definitely spans the globe as far as connections.I remember them saying about the social part in the 2012 Olympics.

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