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1.2 The World Wide Web

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  • 1.2 The World Wide Web

    This document sort of transitions from the last. The actual HTML tutorials are soon to come. The first two sections mostly introduce terminology I will be using throughout the text. Thanks again for any feedback.

    The World Wide Web

    The Internet was a great technical success. However, in order to access information or services, you needed to know the exact address of the resource you were requesting. There was no simple way to navigate the mass of information that was the Internet. When the Internet was made available to the general public, users needed a way to quickly cross-reference documents and locate information and services on the network.

    To serve this purpose, researchers at CERN nuclear research facility, created a system of hypertext documents to easily navigate within their database of technical documents. The format they developed, called hypertext, is a database format used to organize information non-linearly, by providing locations to jump from and jump to distinctively marked locations in text using hyperlinks. A hyperlink is an electronic link that provides direct access from one distinctively marked place in hypertext to another. A hypertext document is also known as a web page, and a collection of web pages made available by an individual, company, or organization, is called a web site.

    A common misconception is that the Internet and the World Wide Web are synonymous. The Internet is the physical structure, and the World Wide Web, or Web, is the collection of web pages on the Internet. For example, many communications, such as satellite transmissions and phone calls, take place on the Internet, but are not a part of the World Wide Web.

    Originally, the Web supported plain text only, but due to commercial interest, the Web now supports images, video, audio, games, and many other forms of electronic media. The Web has transformed the way we communicate and has modified the nature of our social relationships. People now meet on the Web, for business, romance, playing games, etc. With all this going on, the Web may appear extremely complicated. However, it is important to remember the Web is, and always will be, simply a collection of hypertext documents, connected by hyperlinks.
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