Friday, June 15, 2007

Tim Berners-Lee is the BOM(b)

Sir Tim Berners-Lee (aka inventor of the World Wide Web) has received the British Order of Merit from the Queen for his achievements. The award is very prestigious: "Previous recipients have included Florence Nightingale, Sir Winston Churchill, Bertrand Russell, Graham Greene, Sir Edward Elgar, Mother Teresa and Margaret Thatcher."


Indeed, comments on Slashdot summarize some of his achievements well:

- Created HTML, which was arguably much simpler than SGML (yes it also allowed some mediocre "designers" to also design pages, but ultimately it lead to greater adoption)
- Created the HTTP protocol, which by far and large was the greatest "enabler" of the technology, ie allow anonymous access to the information held in a ordered and secure manner.
- Still actively in charge of W3C, and creating new standards, largely without breaking old ones.
- Helped begat XML.
- Did not try and patent it.

So his contributions are large, and he is still actively participating.
More importantly, he didn't try to patent it, but freed it.


Read the story from the BBC, and some discussion at Slashdot.

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Blogger Peter said...

Just found your blog. I am trying to learn more ethnography for my own thesis. Thanks for the news about Sir TBL. I will read more.

11:42 PM  
Blogger Florence Chee said...

Hi Peter, thanks for posting!
It'd be great to chat about what your plans are for using ethnography. Are you coming to AOIR 8.0 in Vancouver this October?

10:40 AM  

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