Sir Tim Berners-Lee has called on web users around the world to show their support for keeping the internet a free and open platform, to mark 25 years of the web's existence.
Berners-Lee submitted his proposal for the World Wide Web on 12 March 1989, while working at Cern. His boss responded, 'vague but exciting', and let him continue to work on the project.
The impact was enormous, with millions of people now online, and the world changed forever, as Berners-Lee himself noted.
"The web has changed the world in ways that I never could have imagined. It has generated billions of dollars in economic growth, turned data into the gold of the 21st century, unleashed innovation in education and healthcare, whittled away geographic and social boundaries, revolutionised the media, and forced a reinvention of politics in many countries by enabling constant two-way dialogue between the rulers and the ruled."
However, he said it was important that the success of the web was not taken for granted as many challenges lie ahead to maintain its growth.
“I also hope this anniversary will spark a global conversation about our need to defend principles that have made the web successful, and to unlock the Web's untapped potential.”
“I believe we can build a web that truly is for everyone: one that is accessible to all, from any device, and one that empowers all of us to achieve our dignity, rights and potential as humans."
He said there were still key challenges to address in order to keep the internet going strong, such as getting the rest of the world online, tackling issues of data privacy and ensuring web architecture remains free and open for all.
As part of the celebrations for the web at 25 years, the Science Museum is displaying the original computer used by Berners-Lee to write his proposal for the web and run the first web server.
V3 attended the machine's unveiling, and took some pictures of the historic item, which will be on display at the museum and form part of its forthcoming Information Age exhibition.
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