Tim Berners-Lee answers FAQs
February 24, 2003 12:03 AM   Subscribe

Are you happy with what the World Wide Web has turned out so far? Tim Berners-Lee, the man who invented the World Wide Web answers that question and others like it.
posted by riffola (13 comments total)
I's got some interesting tidbits, like the shorthand url scheme "//www.metafilter.com/".
posted by riffola at 12:05 AM on February 24, 2003

Some disconnected thoughts:

- I heard TBL speak at a conference once. (I met Ted Nelson there too, but that's another story). It was obvious that he was once of those people who has so much going in their heads at great speed that they cannot complete whole sentences before their brain has outpaced their mouth and moved on to the next bit.
- Having read his book on the Web, and this interview: isn't he a nice man? So often it turns out that pioneers and geniuses are mean, or immoral, or unpleasant in some way, but not Tim. (Please don't burst my bubble...)
- I'm tremendously fond of Tim Brooke Taylor's work. Assonance relates him to TBL in my mind. Now, I can't help wondering if the wonderful niceness of both these men isn't wholly owing to their parents having called them Tim.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:40 AM on February 24, 2003

I thought Al gore invented the internet.
posted by glitterbug at 12:51 AM on February 24, 2003

He's a great and undercelebrated man.
i_am_joe's_spleen - try watching Monty Python and the Holy Grail. You'll change your tune, sonny.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 1:24 AM on February 24, 2003

shhh. so does al gore.
posted by quonsar at 5:22 AM on February 24, 2003

"very few people have an easy, intuitive tool for putting their thoughts into hypertext. And many of the reasons for, and meaning of, links on the web is lost. But these can and I think will change"

Blogger blogger blogger, oi oi oi.
posted by nthdegx at 5:54 AM on February 24, 2003

Blogger an intuitive tool for putting thoughts into hypertext? Please... You've obviously never used a Wiki.

It's a shame they haven't become more popular, because you can create wonderfully rich sites with ease.
posted by AaRdVarK at 6:17 AM on February 24, 2003

How does a wiki solve the problem of publishing small chunks of information in a time-based fashion and archiving that content regularly by date and by category?

Granted, it's a useful tool for building up shared information resources, possibly more useful than a blog in some contexts and possibly less useful in others, but fundamentally one doesn't use a hammer to cut wood.

I don't understand why we can't talk about both blogs and wikis as intuitive tools for putting thoughts into hypertext.
posted by walrus at 8:09 AM on February 24, 2003

Is it just me, or is this Q&A 5 years old?
posted by thebigpoop at 8:24 AM on February 24, 2003

It's not recent, but it's never been linked before, and I thought it was interesting enough.
posted by riffola at 9:21 AM on February 24, 2003

Hey Al Gore haters, can you find a quote where Gore claims that? I thought so...
posted by zekinskia at 4:24 PM on February 24, 2003

Tim Berners-Lee was one of The Goodies?
Seriously, he sounds like a very nice guy, which is something of a surprise given that he could have capitalised on his work to the extent that the WWW may never have grown to what it has today (some would say that would have been a good thing, of course).

I guess it is hard to think of something so widespread and so much a part of the everyday lives of so many people being "invented" at all. There is a theory that, at certain times in history, ideas happen to different people all over the world, such as the steam engine and the automobile. Perhaps it was just "WWW time" and Tim Berners-Lee happened to be the one who was destined to find the idea.
posted by dg at 4:37 PM on February 24, 2003


The idea was around before Berners-Lee. Reading this again, I think it's more likely that it wasn't really economically feasable until recently.
posted by trondant at 8:01 PM on February 24, 2003

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