Re: A WWW history question

Daniel W. Connolly (
Fri, 4 Nov 1994 18:17:38 +0100

In message <>, Steinar Bang writes:
>Here's a history questions for the old-timers:
>Would it be correct to say that the earliest idea of the WWW was to
>offer a single consistent user interface to different network
>services, rather than a world wide hypertext system?

I gather that TimBL believed that hypertext _is_ an single consistent
user interface to different network services:

From: WorldWideWeb: Proposal for a HyperText Project


Proposal for a HyperText Project T. Berners-Lee / CN, R. Cailliau / ECP


HyperText is a way to link and access information of various kinds as a web of nodes in which the user can browse at will. Potentially, HyperText provides a single user-interface to many large classes of stored information such as reports, notes, data-bases, computer documentation and on-line systems help. We propose the implementation of a simple scheme to incorporate several different servers of machine-stored information already available at CERN, including an analysis of the requirements for information access needs by experiments.


see also: "WWW Project History" at

The WWW project is _very_ well documented on It's fairly ironic that most WWW users get their info from NCSA's whats-new and FAQ documents, and never get the background info from They end up asking historical and architectural questions on www-talk or comp.infosystems.... that would be easily answered with 5 minutes surfing around

Oh... and do dispell a popular myth: the CERN LineMode browser is _not_ the original WWW client. The original WWW client was a WYWIWYG HTML editor and multi-window browser that TimBL wrote for the NeXTStep environment. I thought it was kinda funny when somebody asked on comp.infosystems.www.* "Is there a WWW client for the NeXT?"