Cern restores first ever website as the World Wide Web turns 20 - Today's news, tomorrow's lesson - 30 April 2013

On this day 20 years ago, the World Wide Web was born. Now the scientists who created it have restored the very first web page as part of a project to preserve the earliest years of web history.


Cern restores first ever website as the World Wide Web turns 20

Today's news, tomorrow's lesson - 30 April 2013


On this day 20 years ago, the World Wide Web was born. Now the scientists who created it have restored the very first web page as part of a project to preserve the earliest years of web history.

“Don’t be disappointed,” the first web surfers were told. They would arrive at the web page using a very basic browser. They could not even click on links, instead moving between pages by typing numbers and navigating with text commands. These processes would then allow them to download the graphical software that later developed into today’s multimedia websites.

The web was created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee and other scientists at Cern, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, which has since become famous for its search for the Higgs boson, the so-called “God particle”.

The web was designed as a way to share all kinds of information, regardless of the computer you used or where in the world you lived. Its developers gave it away for free so that no organisation could control it.

As well as restoring the earliest web pages, Cern wants to preserve the NeXT computers, created by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. NeXT computers were advanced machines in a sleek black cube, launched in 1990 for US$9,999 and aimed at higher education and business markets. Later, their software would form the basis of the operating system used on Apple Macs and iPhones today.

Cern also wants to safeguard documents about the creation of the web and allow people to experience the way the first web browsers worked.

“I want my children to be able to understand the significance of this point in time. The web is already so ubiquitous – so, well, normal – that one risks failing to see how fundamentally it has changed,” Dan Noyes, web manager for Cern’s communications group, told the BBC.

“We are in a unique moment where we can still switch on the first web server and experience it. We want to document and preserve that.”

http://twitter.com/thefirstwebsite

Resources for you


History of the internet

  • A brief guide to the history and development of the internet from the 1950s to the 1990s.

Presentation: Introduction to web designing

  • Pupils can get involved in creating their own web pages with this HTML introduction.

Professor Sir Tim Berners-Lee FRS: Web science

  • This video shows the creator of the World Wide Web talking about web science.

What happens in 60 seconds on the internet?

  • Help pupils to understand the immensity of the internet with this quick starter activity.


Further news resources


First News front page

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Write all about it

  • Get students creating their own news report with this step-by-step guide.

What is the News?

  • A sociological and media perspective on what makes an event 'newsworthy'.

On the box

  • Help pupils to write their own TV news broadcast with this handy PowerPoint.

Structuring stories

  • A scheme of work to help students structure news stories.

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