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world wide web: the first website 25 years ago

First website in the history was built on August 6, 1991: info.cern.ch

CERN.ch, first website in the history

info.CERN.ch, the first website in the history

In 1980, Tim Berners-Lee, an English independent contractor at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Switzerland, built “ENQUIRE”, a personal database of people and software models, and also a way to play with hypertext; each new page of information in ENQUIRE had to be linked to an existing page.
Berners-Lee’s goal was to
create a system for an online database to be reached from all the computers in the world. He wrote his first server using his personal Next Cube, one of the first computers created by Steve Jobs. Shortly after Berners-Lee’s return to CERN (1984), TCP/IP protocols were installed on some key non-Unix machines at the institution, turning it into the largest Internet site in Europe within a few years. As a result, CERN’s infrastructure was ready for Berners-Lee to create the Web.

Berners-Lee wrote a proposal in March 1989 for “a large hypertext database with typed links”; his boss, Mike Sendall, encouraged him to begin implementing his system on a newly acquired NeXT workstation. After considering several names, he chose “World Wide Web”.
Berners-Lee and the Belgian Robert Cailliau pitched Berners-Lee’s ideas to the European Conference on Hypertext Technology in September 1990, but did not find buyers and vendors able to share Berners-Lee’s vision of matching hypertext with the Internet.
By Christmas 1990, Berners-Lee had built all the tools necessary for a working Web: the HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) 0.9, the HyperText Markup Language (HTML), the first Web browser (named WorldWideWeb, which also was a Web editor), the first HTTP server software (later known as CERN httpd), the first web server (http://info.cern.ch), and the first Web pages that described the project itself.
In January 1991 the first Web servers outside CERN were switched on.
Paul Kunz from the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center visited CERN in September 1991, and was captivated by the Web. He brought the NeXT software back to SLAC, where librarian Louise Addis adapted it for the VM/CMS operating system on the IBM mainframe as a way to display SLAC’s catalog of online documents; this was the first web server outside of Europe and the first in North America.The www-talk mailing list was started in the same month.
An early CERN-related contribution to the Web was the parody band Les Horribles Cernettes, whose promotional image is believed to be among the Web’s first five pictures.
Today, they are over a billion of websites and 3.5 billions of users. (Of course, it is to remember that Internet history started with “ARPAnet” and related American initiatives for optimizing science and military research, overall against Russia. And Italy too deserves a piece of glory…

Sources:
Berners-Lee, Tim. “Frequently asked questions – Start of the web: Influences“. World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 22 July 2010; 
Segal, Ben (1995). “A Short History of Internet Protocols at CERN”. W3C.org;
Berners-Lee, Tim (March 1989). “Information Management: A Proposal“. World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 24 August 2010;
Gromov, Gregory (2011). “The Next Crossroad of Web History”. Net Valley;
Berners-Lee, Tim (2000-11-07). “Weaving the Web: The Original Design and Ultimate Destiny of the World Wide Web”. San Francisco: Harper. p. 23. ISBN 9780062515872;
Tim Berners-Lee. “Frequently asked questions – Robert Cailliau’s role“. World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 22 July2010;
Berners-Lee, Tim. “The Original HTTP as defined in 1991“.W3C.org;
Berners-Lee, Tim (ca 1993/1994). “A Brief History of the Web“. World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 17 August2010;
Raggett, Dave; Jenny Lam; Ian Alexander (1996-04).HTML 3: Electronic Publishing on the World Wide Web. Harlow, England ; Reading, Mass: Addison-Wesley. p. 21.ISBN 9780201876932.

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