Looking back at 1995, the start of the Web

I listened to an interview with Professor Joseph Campbell this week, who wrote the book 1995: The Year the Future Began, and it made me think about how much has happened to the Web since then.

Let’s jump back 20 years to 1995.

Lots of people had heard about the World Wide Web in 1995, but only a few had access to it.

This tweet from Newsweek about the Internet 1995 says a lot about what was going on. Read Clifford Stoll’s full article in this link.

Many of the Internet services that we now take for granted started in 1995. They include Amazon, eBay, Windows 95 and Match.com.

They all built their businesses on ecommerce, which was finally standardised and made safer thanks to the security protocol called Secure Socket Layer (SSL).

Bill Gates said in a speech in 1995 that his company would ‘embrace and extend’ the Internet. Microsoft did that in their ‘own’ way. He also became the richest man in the world that year.

Google was started as a research project in March 1995 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who had gotten to know each other at Stanford University, and the domain name google.com was registered a couple of years later.

When you connected to the Internet in 1995 you used a modem and that dial-up sound is classic. You can listen to it on YouTube.

Other important events in 1995:

  • Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton started their relationship. I highly recommend you watch her TED talk ‘The price of shame’.
  • A truck bomb devastated the Oklahoma City Federal Building killing 168 people.
  • OJ Simpson was found innocent.
  • The DVD was announced as the replacement for VHS.
  • JavaScript was first introduced and deployed.
  • Fashion designer Tom Ford put Gucci back on the mainstream fashion stage.
  • The Spice Girls signed a record contract.
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The world is evolving all the time and I believe that we have to stay connected to our history to put what’s happening now into perspective.

When we lose perspective, history and cultural context, we create space for conflict and misunderstanding. [tweet this by clicking this link]

What’s your thoughts about the history if the Internet and World Wide Web? Please share a comment.

Please share this post with people you know who might find it useful.

Thank you, Sofie Sandell


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