CERN celebrates 30th anniversary of World Wide Web

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World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee (L), European Centre for Nuclear Research (CERN) director general Fabiola Gianotti (C) and Berners-Lee's first collaborator on the World Wide Web project Robert Cailliau pose for photos during an event marking 30 years of World Wide Web at the CERN in Meyrin near Geneva, Switzerland, on March 12, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]

The European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN) celebrated the 30th anniversary of the World Wide Web (WWW) on Tuesday, with Tim Berners-Lee, designer of the WWW, together with other scientists calling for helping the other half global population who still has no access to the Internet to get online.

The celebration kicked off with a short panel discussion involving Berners-Lee and a group of scientists and industry partners at CERN outside Geneva on Tuesday morning, which was part of a 30-hour trip by the father of the WWW who would then travel to London and later to Lagos, Nigeria, for a series of celebrating activities.

Recalling the birth of the WWW, CERN Director General Fabiola Gianotti highlighted that the web showed the power of fundamental research to drive innovation. "Basic science, with its ambitious goals, brings cutting-edge technology and development in many areas, and can impact the society in a profound way," she said.

Today, half of the world's population is online and close to 2 billion websites exist. The web has been an incredible and powerful tool to reach out to all humanity, to break down barriers, to bring education and information to all, and thus to reduce inequalities, the CERN chief concluded.

Berners-Lee explained on CERN's role during the birth of the WWW, which he said was largely attributed to the diversity and freedom of research at the institution. "CERN allowed researchers to choose to use whatever computer and systems they like, which created a dire need for interoperability of information," he said.

He believed that it's more urgent than ever to ensure the other half of the world are not left behind offline and that everyone contributes to a web that drives equality, opportunity and creativity.

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