Sir Tim Berners
by Connor Hughes
what did he do?
Sir Timothy John "Tim" Berners-Lee, OM, KBE, FRS, FREng, FRSA (born 8 June 1955), also known as "TimBL", is a British computer scientist and the inventor of the World Wide Web. He made a proposal for an information management system in March 1989, and on 25 December 1990, with the help of Robert Cailliau and a young student at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), he implemented the first successful communication between a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) client and server via the Internet.
Berners-Lee is the director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which oversees the Web's continued development. He is also the founder of the World Wide Web Foundation, and is a senior researcher and holder of the Founders Chair at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). He is a director of the Web Science Research Initiative (WSRI),and a member of the advisory board of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence.
In 2004, Berners-Lee was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his pioneering work. In April 2009, he was elected a foreign associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences He was honoured as the "Inventor of the World Wide Web" during the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony, in which he appeared in person, working at a NeXT Computer at the London Olympic Stadium. He tweeted "This is for everyone", which was instantly spelled out in LCD lights attached to the chairs of the 80,000 people in the audience.
In June 2009 then British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced Berners-Lee would work with the UK Government to help make data more open and accessible on the Web, building on the work of the Power of Information Task Force. Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt are the two key figures behind data.gov.uk, a UK Government project to open up almost all data acquired for official purposes for free re-use. Commenting on the opening up of Ordnance Survey data in April 2010 Berners-Lee said that: "The changes signal a wider cultural change in Government based on an assumption that information should be in the public domain unless there is a good reason not to—not the other way around." He went on to say "Greater openness, accountability and transparency in Government will give people greater choice and make it easier for individuals to get more directly involved in issues that matter to them."
In November 2009, Berners-Lee launched the World Wide Web Foundation in order to "Advance the Web to empower humanity by launching transformative programs that build local capacity to leverage the Web as a medium for positive change."
Berners-Lee is one of the pioneer voices in favour of Net Neutrality, and has expressed the view that ISPs should supply "connectivity with no strings attached," and should neither control nor monitor customers' browsing activities without their expressed consent. He advocates the idea that net neutrality is a kind of human network right: "Threats to the Internet, such as companies or governments that interfere with or snoop on Internet traffic, compromise basic human network rights."
RecognitionNeXT Computer was used by Berners-Lee at CERN and became the world's first web server
- In 1994 he became one of only six members of the World Wide Web Hall of Fame.
- In 1995 he won the Kilby Foundation's "Young Innovator of the Year" Award.
- In 1995 he received also the Software System Award from the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).
- In the 1997 Queen's Birthday Honours he was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) "for services to global computer networking".
- In 1998 he was awarded with an honorary doctorate from the University of Essex.
- In 1999, Time Magazine named Berners-Lee one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th century.
- In March 2000 he was awarded an honorary degree from The Open University as Doctor of the University.
- In 2001, he was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
- In 2002, he was named in the BBC's list of the 100 Greatest Britons following a UK-wide vote.
- In 2003 he was awarded The Royal Photographic Society's Progress Medal and Honorary Fellowship (HonFRPS) in recognition of any invention, research, publication or other contribution which has resulted in an important advance in the scientific or technological development of photography or imaging in the widest sense.
- In 2003, he received the Computer History Museum's Fellow Award, for his seminal contributions to the development of the World Wide Web.
- On 15 April 2004, he was named as the first recipient of Finland's Millennium Technology Prize, for inventing the World Wide Web. The cash prize, worth one million euros (about £892,000, or US$1.3 million, as of Sept 2011), was awarded on 15 June, in Helsinki, Finland, by the President of the Republic of Finland, Tarja Halonen.
- He received a knighthood in 2004 when he was promoted to Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) in the New Year Honours "for services to the global development of the Internet", and was formally invested on 16 July 2004.
- On 21 July 2004, he was presented with an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Lancaster University.
- On 27 January 2005, he was named Greatest Briton of 2004, both for his achievements and for displaying the key British characteristics of "diffidence, determination, a sharp sense of humour and adaptability", as put by David Hempleman-Adams, a panel member.
- In 2007, Berners-Lee received the Academy of Achievement's Golden Plate Award.
- In 2007, he was ranked Joint First, alongside Albert Hofmann, in The Telegraph's list of 100 greatest living geniuses.
- On 13 June 2007, he received the Order of Merit, becoming one of only 24 living members entitled to hold the honour, and to use the post-nominals 'O.M.' after their name. (The Order of Merit is within the personal bestowal of The Queen, and does not require recommendation by ministers or the Prime Minister)
- He was awarded the 2008 IEEE/RSE Wolfson James Clerk Maxwell Award, for "conceiving and further developing the World Wide Web".
- On 2 December 2008, Berners-Lee was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Manchester. His parents worked on the Manchester Mark 1 in the 1940s and 50s.
- On 21 April 2009, he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid.
- On 28 April 2009, he was elected a foreign associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences.
- On 8 June 2009, he received the Webby Award for Lifetime Achievement, at the awards ceremony held in New York City.
- In October 2009, he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
- On 30 March 2011, he was one of the first three recipients of the Mikhail Gorbachev award for "The Man Who Changed the World", at the inuagural awards ceremony held in London. The other recipients were Evans Wadongo for solar power development and anti-poverty work in Africa, and media mogul Ted Turner.
- On 26 May 2011, Berners-Lee was awarded with an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Harvard University.
- In 2011, he was inducted into IEEE Intelligent Systems' AI's Hall of Fame for the "significant contributions to the field of AI and intelligent systems".
- In 2012, Berners-Lee was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame by the Internet Society.
- On 27 July 2012, Berners-Lee was recognised for the invention of the World Wide Web in the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony.
- On 3 December 2012, the Sultan of Oman conferred the Sultan Qaboos Order for Culture, Science and Arts (First Class) on Sir Tim Berners-Lee.
- Eelco van Asperen
- History of the World Wide Web
- Kevin Hughes (www)
- Network neutrality
- Paul Otlet
- Semantic Web
- Bob Taylor
- Vannevar Bush
- Berners-Lee, Tim; Mark Fischetti (1999). Weaving the Web: The Original Design and Ultimate Destiny of the World Wide Web by its inventor. Britain: Orion Business. ISBN 0-7528-2090-7.
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- Tim Berners-Lee and the Development of the World Wide Web (Unlocking the Secrets of Science), Ann Gaines (Mitchell Lane Publishers, 2001) ISBN 1-58415-096-3
- Tim Berners-Lee: Inventor of the World Wide Web (Ferguson's Career Biographies), Melissa Stewart (Ferguson Publishing Company, 2001) ISBN 0-89434-367-X children's biography
- Weaving the Web Berners-Lee, Tim, with Fischetti, Mark (Harper Collins Publishers,1999) ISBN 0-06-251586-1(cloth) ISBN 0-06-251587-X(paper)
- How the Web was Born: The Story of the World Wide Web Robert Cailliau, James Gillies, R. Cailliau (Oxford University Press, 2000) ISBN 0-19-286207-3
- Tim Berners-Lee Gives the Web a New Definition
- BBC2 Newsnight – Transcript of video interview of Berners-Lee on the read/write Web
- Technology Review interview
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