On April 30, 1993, the software required to connect to the nascent World Wide Web was made publicly and freely available by creator Tim Berners-Lee and his employer, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN.
“By making the software required to run a web server freely available, along with a basic browser and a library of code, the web was allowed to flourish,” CERN said today in a statement.
CERN and Lee published the world’s first website, a starter kid for the World Wide Web project, hosted on Berners-Lee’s NeXT computer.
The website has long since gone defunct, but in honor of the 20th anniversary of the open Internet, CERN has taken it live again, using the still-operable NeXT machine.
In 1993, Internet information retrieval systems such as WAIS and Gopher were available, but free access and the ease of use of Berners-Lee’s software spurred rapid adoption of the medium.
Berners-Lee continues to be an advocate for open protocols, available freely to all users, rather than proprietary software and platforms.