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A knighthood for the Web

Congratulations to Tim Berners-Lee, who has been knighted in the 2004 New Year's Honours List.

The web has had a huge effect on my life. I first came across it while doing research at the University of Bath, when I tried the first text browsers as an alternative to the now long dead WAIS. Then, one Sunday afternoon, when I was living in Borehamwood, I popped over to Watford to visit autopope, who dragged me into his office to see the first graphical web browser at work.

It was one of those life changing moments.

Web technologies became a key part of my research work at Hirst, and I found myself writing about them for one of the first Internet magazines in the UK, Online World. I remember writing a review of the earliest Windows browsers. That led to my being hired by UK Online, and two years building and running the technology side of a national ISP. Then I moved into cosultancy, and helped build some of the biggest and most complex web sites and applications around, through boom and bust.

I've seen CGI replaced by application servers, web servers evolve from simple page delivery tools to complex development environments. I've seen the web move from simple pages and a few pictures, to a general purpose application user interface that's a familiar part of the everyday world. And I'm watching the evolution of the semantic web, and web services, and watching them change the world of business, with the arrival of a truly service-oriented way of thinking about problems.

Today I'm still writing about, and working with, the web and web technologies, with a regular column on web development.

And I'm using LJ, a superb example of the current generation of web applications, to write about the web and what it's done for me.

10 years that shook the world. And me.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
jhaelan
Dec. 31st, 2003 04:48 am (UTC)
Seconded on a thoroughly deserved honour and on the web being something that shook me and continues to shake me everyday :)
jhaelan
Dec. 31st, 2003 04:52 am (UTC)
bibliofile
Dec. 31st, 2003 12:41 pm (UTC)
oh, and you're right about the Web's being an amazing creation
IJWTS that I read one of your articles on The Guardian's site last weekend.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )