World-Wide Web definition World-Wide Web, networking, hypertext
(WWW, W3, The Web) An Internet client-server hypertext
distributed information retrieval system which originated from the CERN
High-Energy Physics laboratories in Geneva, Switzerland.
An extensive user community has developed on the Web since its public introduction in 1991. In the early 1990s, the developers at CERN spread word of the Web's capabilities to scientific audiences worldwide. By September 1993, the share of Web traffic traversing the NSFNET Internet backbone
reached 75 gigabytes
per month or one percent. By July 1994 it was one terabyte
On the WWW everything (documents, menus, indices) is represented to the user as a hypertext
object in HTML
format. Hypertext links
refer to other documents by their URLs
. These can refer to local or remote resources accessible via FTP
, as well as those available via the http
protocol used to transfer hypertext
The client program (known as a browser
), e.g. NCSA Mosaic
, Netscape Navigator
, runs on the user's computer and provides two basic navigation operations: to follow a link
or to send a query to a server. A variety of client and server software is freely available.
Most clients and servers also support "forms" which allow the user to enter arbitrary text as well as selecting options from customisable menus and on/off switches.
Following the widespread availability of web browsers and servers, many companies from about 1995 realised they could use the same software and protocols on their own private internal TCP/IP
networks giving rise to the term "intranet
The World Wide Web Consortium
is the main standards body for the web. An article by John December (http://sunsite.unc.edu/cmc/mag/1994/oct/webip.html)
. A good place to start exploring (http://ncsa.uiuc.edu/SDG/Software/Mosaic/StartingPoints/NetworkStartingPoints.html)
. WWW servers, clients and tools (http://w3.org/hypertext/WWW/Status.html)
Mailing list: .
Usenet newsgroups: news:comp.infosystems.www.misc, news:comp.infosystems.www.providers, news:comp.infosystems.www.users, news:comp.infosystems.announce.
The best way to access this dictionary is via the Web since you will get the latest version and be able to follow cross-references easily. If you are reading a plain text version of this dictionary then you will see lots of curly brackets and strings like
These are transformed into hypertext links when you access it via the Web.
See also Java, webhead.