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How The Web Was Born: The Story of the World Wide Web (Popular Science) Paperback – 7 Dec 2000

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, U.S.A. (7 Dec. 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192862073
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192862075
  • Product Dimensions: 12.4 x 2.3 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 386,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Amazon Review

Today the Web is pervasive, and it is hard to believe that as recently as 1990 it was merely a small project at CERN (Conseil Europeen pour la Recherche Nucleaire). This book tells the story. It starts in the sixties, when Paul Baran in California and Donald Davies at the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington independently came up with the idea of packet switching--part of the technology that makes the Internet possible. Then there was ARPA (Advanced Research Projects Agency), set up by the US Department of Defence, and ARPANET, the precursor to the Internet, and in 1983 the beginning of the Internet itself.

Having the network is one thing, but for millions of people it is the Web that makes it useful. On 23 June 1980 Tim Berners-Lee joined CERN, and the authors describe how his work and ideas evolved until in 1989 he made a proposal for hyperlinked documents, on which his boss Mike Sendall scribbled the words "vague but exciting".

Written by two senior members of CERN, How the Web Was Born is a readable and carefully-researched account of the Web's earliest years. It is an international story, but while there is plenty of coverage of development around the world, this book is particularly valuable thanks to its European perspective. Technical terms are explained, and the general reader will be grateful for the appendices which include a timeline, list of key individuals, bibliography, explanation of acronyms, and of course an index. The Web is young and it is too soon for a definitive history, but this is essential reading for anyone with an interest in how it all started. Read it alongside Weaving the Web, by Tim Berners-Lee himself. --Tim Anderson


This is a scholarly work for the price of a novel (Gareth Price)

It is not a light read but it is a good one! (David Coleman, Multimedia Information and Technology, February 2001)

excellent book (New Scientist 30/9/00)

a good read (Glasgow Herald, 22/9/00)

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on 25 April 2001
Format: Paperback
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on 27 November 2015
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
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Most helpful customer reviews on 3.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews
4.0 out of 5 starsInteresting First Hand Look at the Development of the Web
on 5 July 2014 - Published on
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
2 people found this helpful.
3.0 out of 5 starsHow the Web (not the Internet) was born
on 16 February 2008 - Published on
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
4 people found this helpful.
4.0 out of 5 starsGripping, Rivetting and Spellbinding
on 5 February 2001 - Published on
Format: Paperback
7 people found this helpful.
2.0 out of 5 starsgood, European perspective, too deferential to Berners-Lee.
on 4 August 2003 - Published on
Format: Paperback
One person found this helpful.
5.0 out of 5 starsOnce upon a time in the web!
on 12 February 2006 - Published on
Format: Paperback