Web 1.0

The World Wide Web (www) is that part of the internet in which web pages can be found. On a typical web page, there are often links (hyperlinks) to other web pages, pictures, audio or whatever. On the www, one page links to another, which in turn links onwards to other pages, each of which links to other pages still. There is therefore, a ‘web’ of interlinked pages. (That’s why it is called the www.)

The www really burst into life with the creation of the browser. (You may remember the browser wars and the dotcom boom.) Basically, when the browser came into being, the web became much more accessible, hence much more useful – recall Metcalf’s Law. This precipitated an unprecedented boom: millions of websites were created as the www quickly commercialized. This was the dotcom boom. Unfortunately, this led to the dotcom crash.

The rapid commercialization of the www robbed it of its true nature. The internet was largely defaced and became mostly about money: it was, and probably still is, all too common to find thousands of websites that offered very little to the user but were nonetheless bursting at the seams with advertisements. I’m sure we all remember those large, obstructive, flashing banners and the all too familiar and extremely irritating flurry of pop-ups. The user, and website usefulness was forgotten and the original internet ideals of freedom and community were but a distant memory.

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