There is no denying of the fact that pretty much everyone in this world uses the Web and almost every person we know is on Facebook, probably even their grandma and grandpa are also on Facebook. We spend more time socializing on the Web than we do in person. However the question is, how much really do you know about the Internet or the Web? If your knowledge about the Web is limited, here is your chance to boost up your general knowledge with this list of 40 interesting World Wide Web facts.
Interesting World Wide Web Facts: 1-10
1. The World Wide Web (or simply the Web) and Internet are not the same things though we have a tendency of using them interchangeably (as we did in the opening paragraph). Web refers to collection of animations, digital photos, files, music, text pages etc. The Internet on the other hand refers to networking infrastructure responsible for connecting millions of computers and other devices all over the world. Thus, Web is essentially a subset of Internet.
2. Sir Tim Berners-Lee, a British scientist and engineer wrote a proposal in 1989 that eventually became the World Wide Web.
3. Today, Sir Tim Berners-Lee is the director of the W3C or the World Wide Web Consortium.
4. Berners-Lee received his knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II in year 2004.
5. The first ever website to go online is still online. It can be found here: http://info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html. This website was built in 1991.
6. The first readily accessible browser to be built for the web was the line-mode browser. It was created in 1992.
7. Berners-Lee used his NeXT Computer to invent the Web. That computer was world’s first web server. That computer is still available at CERN.
8. Can you guess the number of websites online today? Well, we are a tad below 1 Billion mark. As of now, there are 945,357,100 websites online (excluding the number of inactive websites). You can find the live figure here.
9. There are more devices in this world that are connected to the Internet than there are number of human beings living on Earth.
10. The launch of Mosaic web browser in 1993 is today considered to the turning point for the Web. Mosaic is today credited for making the Web popular.
Interesting World Wide Web Facts: 11-20
11. The Mosaic was world’s first graphical web browser and was developed by a team at University of Illinois’ National Center for Supercomputing applications.
12. Several names were suggested for the finalized project (The Project – refer to point number 5). Information Mine, Mine of Information, Information Mesh and World Wide Web were the suggested names and the final one was selected over the other names.
13. Berner-Lee’s boss was one of the many people who didn’t really understand the concept of Lee’s proposal. His boss described his project as ‘vague but interesting’.
14. The first image to be ever uploaded on the Web was of CERN house band known as Les Horribles Cernettes. That photo was uploaded in 1992.
15. Jean Armour Polly was the person to coin the term ‘surfing the Internet’. He came up with the term in 1992.
16. The Web or the Internet (whatever you prefer calling it) became world’s fastest growing medium of communication. It took only 5 years for the web to achieve first 50 million users as opposed to 13 years required by television and 38 years required by radio.
17. Archie is often dubbed as the first Internet search engine of the world. Archie was actually a tool that was designed for indexing FTP archives so that people could easily find specific types of files they were looking for.
18. The US programmer named Ray Tomilinson was the first person to invent the email system. He sent the first ever email in 1971. This claim has however been challenged by Indian-born scientist named Shiva Ayyadurai (a bio-scientist based in United States) who claims that Tomilinson only invented primitive form of text messaging and that the actual email was invented by Ayyadurai himself in 1978 when he was 14 years old. Read the full report here.
19. Google didn’t really come up with gmail. Gmail.com was in fact a free email service offered by Garfield (the famous cartoon cat character). Google simply acquired gmail.
20. The first ever webcam that was used was not for chatting. It was meant for monitoring a coffee maker to ensure that people would not walk down to the coffee maker only to find that the pot was empty. The webcam was deployed at the computer lab of Cambridge University.
Interesting World Wide Web Facts: 21-30
21. MP3 was already invented in 1991 but Napster – the first ever music file sharing service was developed and put online in 1998.
22. It was the same year (i.e. 1998) that Google was launched.
23. The first ever emoticon to be used was in 1979 by Kevin Mackenzie. It looked like this: -). This emoticon was however not like a face. Three years later in 1982, Scott Fahlman introduced the emoticon :-), which became the norm.
24. According to Google, there are over 5 million Terabytes of data spread all across the Internet and the search engine giant has managed to index on 0.04% of the that.
25. The first ever banner ad to be used on Internet was in 1994. It was for AT&T’s You Will campaign. The ad was placed on homepage of HotWired.
26. An engineer named Steve Wilke was the person who invented the GIF image format in 1987.
27. Today (20th of May, 2015) the Internet is exactly 8688 days old!
28. In 1978, Gary Thuerk was the first person to send world’s first SPAM email using ARPNET (the precursor of Internet).
29. The first ever domain to be registered was symbolics.com. It was registered on 15th March 1985 and is still active today.
30. The entire Internet can be copied in 1 billion DVDs or 200 million Blu Ray discs.
Interesting World Wide Web Facts: 31-40
31. The first ever YouTube video was ‘Me at the Zoo’. It featured Jawed Karim – a founder of San Diego Zoo. The video was uploaded on 23rd April, 2005.
32. Approximately 250 billions emails are sent everyday. Interestingly 81% of these emails are spam.
33. Jack Dorsey – Twitter founder twitted the first tweet on 21st March, 2006. The tweet he sent was ‘just setting up my twttr’.
34. 80% of all images found on Internet are of naked women.
35. One-third of all Internet searches everyday are about porn.
36. Advertising revenue earned by Google is higher than the revenue earned by the entire print industry of United States.
37. Amazon, eBay and Twitter were supposed to have different names. Amazon was supposed to be named as Cadabra, eBay was supposed to be echobay and Twitter was supposed to be Jitter.
38. Before the Web came into existence and made way for porn industry, people actually used to trade ASCII Porn over the Internet precursor during the 70’s and the 80’s.
39. The technology that led to the invention of Internet began at MIT in 1960s.
40. The first ever message that was transmitted using the Internet precursor was LOG. The user actually tried sending the word LOGIN but the enormous data load of letter G crashed the entire network.