If you can't imagine the world without the Web, just remember that in human years, the World Wide Web really hasn't even broken 30 years old yet. According to TechSpot, the World Wide Web started March 12, 1989, when Tim Berners-Lee penned a paper that proposed a way to use computers to connect university researchers so that they could share information more easily around the world. In 1990, the first website went live on Tim's computer and only existed to describe the features of the web and how people could use it for themselves. This simple plain-text page evolved into the multimedia-driven Web of today.
Many important milestones have been reached over the years, and CNN highlights many companies and services as they popped up. Although some are still very much alive and kicking, others have faded into history. Here are some of the big ones:
- 1993: AOL starts sending their famous free software in the mail on CDs. There are 130 websites in existence at this time.
- 1995: Amazon.com launches as an online bookstore.
- 1997: Google.com is registered, and there are now 1 million websites created.
- 1999: Napster, the first popular peer-to-peer file sharing service changes the way people think about music.
- 2003-2005: Myspace launches and quickly becomes the biggest social network in the world. Facebook and YouTube launch in the next two years and start their climb.
- 2013: By this year, it is estimated that 2.7 billion people are able to access the Internet worldwide.
The most striking feature of the World Wide Web.
Ordinary people were able to create their own content from the beginning. As BizTech magazine points out, GeoCities launched in 1995 and allowed users to host their own website for free. Today the web provides people access to the information, people, places, and events of the world that was once unimaginable.