Happy Birthday WWW


The Worldwide Web turned 25 today. Mazel tov. That’s a photo of the first web server (above).

I was there at the beginning, watching from the sidelines. I’m not Al Gore! However, there was an Internet before WWW and I was on it.

Thanks to Dr. Mel Goldstein I acquired an account on the CTState network. That got me online, which at that time was a bunch of very simple servers. There were gophers and Archies and Veronicas. You used a terminal program, not a browser.

I remember manually routing myself through strange dial-up ports. Downloading a 1Mb file could take an hour.

There were no pictures (though porn wasted no time finding the Internet), nor decorative fonts. It was text.

Tim Berners-Lee created “http,” the Hypertext Transport Protocol. That’s how website data is sent and it was a breakthrough concept. Brilliant.

It took a few more years before the first web page appeared. It is preserved at its original address!

It was all geeks and dweebs at first. We early adopters test drove the kinks out for you. No thanks necessary. It was our pleasure. Really.

In many ways the web is showing its age. It just isn’t designed with the security necessary to safely accomplish its daily tasks. We are walking on eggshells at 25.

2 thoughts on “Happy Birthday WWW”

  1. That explains why I am finding binders full of fonts and and graphics and jibberish (for want of a proper term)that I can’t make heads or tails of—hand copied by my husband. He started himself on learning the computer with an old Timex that used the television for a screen. He set it all up in a spare bedroom. From that he went on to a ?Kay Pro—by then we were living up in IBM country, and the church folk working at IBM were not pleased with him not going “their way–or the right way”. I think we travelled to NJ to obtain this machine–I know it cost about $6000 (and this was cheaper than what he could have gotten through IBM. I almost wish now, that I had learned the ins and outs of this “new technology”, with him, instead of being alone with lots of questions.
    Back to your note—Don’t you wonder if they ever even dreamed that there would be so many devices that use the internet, as we have today—back when it all began. I think it is because of all this new (almost daily) technology that security can’t keep up.
    Geoff—I have a question. What do I do with the boxes upon boxes of old floppy’s—both the 4″ and then the smaller ones. How do I dispose of them? Would they still have info on them, if one had a machine to read them??? I’m open to all suggestions.

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