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Father of the Web Becomes "Sir Tim"

"I accept this as an endorsement of the spirit of the Web," says newly knighted W3C director

In his book Weaving the Web, the inventor of the WWW, Tim Berners Lee - Tim BL for short - tried to answer questions that had been thrown at him again and again ever since Christmas 1990 when he first got his "World Wide Web" browser/editor working on his machine and one belonging to CERN colleague Robert Cailliau, so that the two of them were able to communicate over the Internet with the info.cern.ch server. Questions such as "What were you thinking when you invented it?" through "So what do you think of it now?" to "Where is this all going to take us?"

He didn't anticipate, even in 1999 when the book was published, that technologies like HTML, HTTP, and XML would take him just four years later to a knighthood.

"The original idea of the Web," says Tim BL, "was that it should be a collaborative space where you can communicate through sharing information. The idea was that by writing something together, and as people worked on it, they could iron out misunderstanding."

Now Boston-based, heading up the W3C, he will henceforth be known as Sir Tim Berners-Lee. In characteristic fashion, Sir Tim was quick to share the honor with the wider community, saying in an official W3C statement today:

"This is an honor which applies to the whole Web development community, and to the inventors and developers of the Internet, whose work made the Web possible. I accept this as an endorsement of the spirit of the Web; of building it in a decentralized way; of making best efforts to keep it open and fair; and of ensuring its fundamental technologies are available to all for broad use and innovation, and without having to pay licensing fees."

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