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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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Most Recent Comments
lapchinj 01/15/04 09:49:50 PM EST

I think that this is GREAT! It adds respectability to the geek paradigm. Sir Tim a Knight in shining armor. Maybe now my parents will think of my career with a little more respect. Besides all knights are geeks anyway but it took the Queen of England to realize that geeks are cool and are the people that contribute the most to society (along with the little people like us). Is Linus Torvalds next?

U. Penski 01/07/04 11:54:50 AM EST

Congratulations.
Who will be next within the IT world ?
(Sir) Peter Norton ?
Well, fighting against virus attacks that threat the Commonwealth he surely would have deserved the title "Knight Commander"

Matt Campbell 01/06/04 02:29:33 PM EST

Does DARPA get a knighthood too? ;)

Francisco 12/31/03 09:04:32 PM EST

There were those opose to Marconi's wirless telegrah, they did not see see how to make money out of it and they did not like his nobles intentions. We did not have pay bills to watch tv when we were younger.
Let's keep internet free as the inventor wants it.

End User 12/31/03 04:47:09 PM EST

Sir Tim, You deserve it. Congrats!!!

Jack Hammered 12/31/03 10:10:16 AM EST

It simply sounds like he doesn't want two things to happen, 1st, the government to come along and screw it up, and 2nd, he doesn't want Bill Gates to come along and screw it up.

Ralph 12/31/03 10:10:07 AM EST

What is Al Gore going to claim now?

Zachary 12/31/03 09:19:07 AM EST

...and I always hear Brits saying US news is overly patriotic!

HB 12/31/03 08:56:03 AM EST

The Web represents for human culture a qualitative step equivalent with Gutemberg and typography.
Today nobody could even guess its final results on the human culture and society.

Tim J 12/31/03 08:50:39 AM EST

Congratulations and Thank-You for putting the World at my fingertips!

Homer Simpson 12/31/03 08:50:00 AM EST

SIR TIM, SIR TIM, SIR TIM, HOORAY!!!! THANKS IMMEASURABLLY FOR THE TRUE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION, THE INOVATION OF THE MODERN AGE, UNEQUALED, CAN'T SHOUT YOUR PRAISES LOUD ENOUGH!
EVERY OTHER ADVANCEMENT WAS JUST A STEPPING STONE FOR THE
WWW. THANKS MAN, ERRR SIR TIM!!!

Don Stephens 12/31/03 08:40:46 AM EST

Oh Please, everyone know Al Gore invented the Internet!

JCH 12/31/03 08:31:34 AM EST

Words cannot describe the magnitude of your contribution to the world but the words that comprise the information we share over the WWW is what this is all about. My words to you are "thank you."

Tan Teik Lock 12/31/03 08:00:38 AM EST

An Honour appropriately bestowed upon an altruistic person who provided a communication channel for exchange of ideas for all without licensing fees.Happy New Year,Sir Tim.

Tan Teik Lock 12/31/03 07:56:28 AM EST

An Honour appropriately bestowed upon an altruistic person who provided a communication channel for exchange of ideas for all without licensing fees.

Hugh Stone III 12/31/03 07:38:32 AM EST

if those are his feelings, it's a good thing she gave him the knighthood when she did, because in the name of security, a lot of the free is about to be drained from the system.

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