While it seems like we have experienced the now called web forever, it’s only 30 years old. And as my new friends from the Internet Society (ISOC), a non-profit organization focused on Internet technology and policy point out, we must not confuse the web with the Internet, the latter being twenty years older.
The World Wide Web was invented in 1990 by computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee. The first web page went live on August 6, 1991, looking like a text document with hyperlinks. No pictures, videos or advertising. Wow! Check it out here
What the World Wide Web did was use the global Internet highway to bring life to consumer online screens.
“While the Web is probably the largest service on the Internet that most people use, it’s not all of the Internet,” stated Andrew Sullivan, CEO of Internet Society. “In fact, the web would not exist without the Internet … but similarly the Internet would not have grown into the amazing and powerful tool it is without the Web.” “It’s the open architecture of the Internet that makes the wonders of the Web possible,” added Sullivan.
In a nutshell, the web needs the Internet to work… but the Internet needs the Web to be useful.
While the web runs over the Internet, it also co-exists with other online apps like email, chat, and video conferencing. Every time you message someone on WhatsApp, iMessage or Facebook Messenger, you are using the Internet, but NOT the Web.
Similarly, every time you make a video call over Skype, Facetime, Zoom, WhatsApp, you are using the Internet, but NOT the web. But today’s web browser experience is what has transformed our lives at home, work and play.
The web relies on the Internet to get content to people … and the Internet relies on the Web for the content people want.