So many people’s quality of life and work is dependent upon the Web. It makes it easier for us to communicate, shop and get so many things done. The growth of the Web is like nothing that ever happened before or since. Less than 5 years after it was invented more than 6 million people were using it. As of June 2017, 51% of the world's population is on the Internet! There are about 300 to 500 new websites added to the WWW each minute.

How did it all begin?

It all began in Geneva Switzerland at the CERN Laboratories, when Tim Berners-Lee, a graduate of Oxford University, got frustrated because his daily scheduler, his list of phone numbers, and his documents were stored in different databases on different machines making it impossible for him to access them all simultaneously. In 1980 he wrote a program entitled, "Enquire-Within-Upon-Everything", which enabled him to access his private data across multiple machines and databases. Shortly after writing this program, he left CERN Laboratories to accept another position. In 1989, he returned to CERN Laboratories and discovered that nobody had done anything with his program. Shortly after returning, he proposed the use of a hypertext-based system to access the data stored across multiple machines and databases. Then in 1990, while working on a project to enable information sharing within internationally dispersed teams and the sharing of information by support groups, he proposed a Web concept. By May of 1991, the first Web application was ready for use by the scientists at CERN Laboratories.

How does it all work?

The millions of servers all over the world that are digitally connected to each other by cable, fiber optics or wireless links. In your browser you type in a website address and then it loads onto your screen. A request by your computer needs to be sent to where the web page is located. The request is sent in a ‘packet’. A packet is like a virtual parcel which has lots of important information attached to it. The two most important bits of information are the IP address of the web server that the web page is stored on and the IP address of your computer. Now that the packet has arrived, the web server opens it and reads your computer’s request.

The state of the Web

Of course technology doesn’t stand still and the Web has developed a lot since it began. The days of connecting via whistling dial-up modems are gone and it is faster to access sites than before… or is that really always the case? Certainly people EXPECT to reach web pages quicker than ever before. An excellent way to find out just how a webpage is performing is to register for our free account. You can monitor up to 4 URLs for free!