A to Z of Computer Scientists. Notable Scientists by Harry Henderson

By Harry Henderson

This entire A-to-Z biographical dictionary explores the varied staff of inventors, scientists, marketers, and visionaries within the machine technology box. The state-of-the-art, modern entries and data at the machine provide a glimpse into not just their force but in addition their demanding situations in making a new form of company and a brand new form of tradition.

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As demand grew for a body to standardize and shape the evolution of the Web, Berners-Lee founded the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) in 1994. Through a process of user feedback and refinement, the standards for addresses (URLs), the transmission protocol (HTTP), and the hypertext markup language (HTML) were firmly established. Together with his colleagues, Berners-Lee has struggled to maintain a coherent vision of the Web in the face of tremendous growth and commercialization, the involvement of huge corporations with conflicting agendas, and contentious issues of censorship and privacy.

Bricklin found that his fellow students and his professors were enthusiastic about the idea of making a “word processor” for numbers. He sketched out his ideas for the program, then wrote a simple version in BASIC on an Apple II microcomputer. It was very slow because BASIC had to translate each instruction into the actual machine language used by the microcomputer. Bricklin talked to Bob Frankston, and they agreed to develop the program together. Bricklin would create the overall design and documentation for the program, while Frankston would write it in faster-running assembly language.

In the original vision for the Web, users would create Web pages as easily as they could read them, using software no more complicated than a word processor. While there are programs today that hide the details of HTML coding and allow easier Web page creation, Berners-Lee feels the Web must become even easier to use if it is to be a truly interactive, open-ended knowledge system. He believes that users should be empowered to become active participants in the creation of knowledge, not just passive recipients.

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