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05/02/2013

World's first website turns 20, is re-launched

From this....

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To this....

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In 20 simple years. On Monday, CERN announced it was launching a project to restore the world's first URL.

Twenty years and three days ago, a researcher at CERN -- the European physics institute -- posted a web page that would be considered horrifyingly boring by today's standards.

On white background in black times new roman text, the page lists links like "Help," "Software products" and "Technical."

Most viewers would have needed help, in fact, because that page, posted on April 30, 1993, was the very first site on the World Wide Web.

You can see it here

Now CERN is launching a project to restore that first URL and to retain and protect the early files and web servers that went into creating the World Wide Web.

After announcing the project and the re-appearance of the first-ever website on Monday, the project's blog said the team was blown away by the level of interest from the public.

"We have a great number of leads that came up following yesterday's publicity. People who have old machines lying around; copies of files that may be of use; expertise; ideas; stories. This is fantastic. Thank you."

In 1993, there were other systems for retrieving information on the Internet. But the WWW prevailed because it was free and simple to use.

Its inventor, British physicist Tim Berners-Lee, created the WWW system in 1989 to satisfy demand among international researchers for file-sharing capabilities. 

My, how you've grown.

Kate Allen is the Star's Science and Technology reporter. Find her on Twitter at @katecallen.

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