1989 to 2014 – 25 Years of Amazing Changes

(Dramatically influenced by the World Wide Web [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][www])

In 1989 Nick Faldo won The Masters, Curtis Strange won the US Open, Mark Calcavecchia won the British Open and  Payne Stewart won the PGA Championship.   In 1989 Payne Stewart’s winning prize money was $ 200,000.  In 2013 Jason Dufner won $1,445,000 as PGA Champion.

Golf clubs today are technically vastly superior when compared to 25 years ago; golf balls fly further; and other aspects such as golf shoes are also improved.  The golfers have more scientific training programs and they are able to play better on longer golf courses.  Global television coverage is enhanced by people following the different Championships live and online via the World Wide Web.

1989 was the year that Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web (www.).  How his invention has changed the world!  Berners-Lee made a proposal for an information management system in March 1989, and he implemented the first successful communication between a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) client and server via the Internet sometime around mid November 1989.

In 1989, Sir Tim Berners-Lee worked for CERN, which was the largest Internet node in Europe. Berners-Lee saw an opportunity to join Hypertext with the Internet.  He is quoted as saying “I just had to take the Hypertext idea and connect it to the Transmission Control Protocol and domain name system ideas and—ta-da!—the World Wide Web …”

The first website built was at CERN within the border of France and was first put online on 6 August 1991.  Info.cern.ch  was the address of the world’s first-ever web site and web server, running on a NeXT computer at CERN.

The first web page address was http://info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html , which centred on information regarding the WWW project.  Visitors could learn more about Hypertext, technical details for creating their own webpage and even an explanation on how to search the Web for information.  There are no screenshots of this original page and, in any case, changes were made daily to the information available on the page as the WWW project developed.  A later copy (1992) may be found on the World Wide Web Consortium website.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s invention has changed the day-to-day lives of people in every country of the world more comprehensively than anything else in recorded history – unfortunately not always for the better.  Berners-Lee has not surprisingly been repeatedly honoured for his invention, including being selected in 1999 by Time Magazine as one of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century.  In 2007 he was ranked Joint First, alongside Swiss scientist Albert Hofmann, in The Telegraph’s list of 100 greatest living geniuses and at the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics in 2012 he was honoured and appeared in person, working with a vintage NeXT Computer, where he Tweeted “This is for everyone”, which instantly was spelled out in LCD lights attached to the chairs of the 80,000 people in the stadium.

Here are 25 random impacts made by the WWW.  There are no doubts many more!

1. Facts at Your Fingertips. Thanks to the web search engines, Siri and Google Now, trivia questions and arguments about facts on a broad basis can be settled in a matter of seconds.  Nothing more to fight about then….!

2. Weather.  No need to watch the weatherman on the news to know which way the wind blows. Just check your phone to know whether to wear your Manolo Blahniks or your Moccasins.

3. Fame. Anyone can become an international superstar thanks to YouTube.  Let’s not forget that this is how Justin Bieber was discovered.

4. Earth, Maps and Directions. If you have a mobile phone or a computer no need to buy an Atlas or have to ask for directions again.  Google Earth, Google Maps and its geocentric cousins can supply whatever directions or global information you may need.

5. Shopping. Wandering into a supermarket chain may soon become a thing of the past.  iResearch predicts annual turnover of online shopping in China to reach 1.85 trillion Yuan (just under $300 Billion US Dollars) in 2014, as Chinese shoppers are increasingly purchasing online.  Statistics indicate that 242 million Chinese were shopping online by the end of 2012.  Americans spent nearly $ 270 Billion shopping online in 2013, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, a figure that’s increasing by 15% to 20% each year.

6. The Final Frontier.  Everything is quite literally at the end of your finger.  You don’t have to work for NASA to book a place on the next Virgin Atlantic trip to Mars.

7. Planes, Trains and Automobiles. Travel agents are on their way out.  In 2012 in the USA seven out of 10 travellers booked their own vacations/rooms and flights online.

8. The World is Flat.  You no longer need to talk to your co-workers or even meet them, thanks to email, instant messaging and remote access software.  You can work with someone for years and perhaps be unable to pick them out of a police line-up.  Reviews and major business meetings can be held via Skype.

9. Snide Comments and Observations.  How many celebrities and other stars have been exposed in a matter of minutes after making or even just mouthing some form of comment; or dressing inappropriately for that matter?  Snarkasm as it is referred to has become an art form.

10. Crime. No longer is crime limited to bad neighbourhoods.  Each day about 1,5 million people are the victims of some form of cybercrime according to a 2012 study by Symantec.

11. Games. The days of going to the local arcade to play Space Invaders are rapidly disappearing.  Classic Arcade Games are a fingertip away!

12. Live and Online communication.  Video chats are no longer just part of cyberspace movies.  Skype, FaceTime and Google Hangouts allow face-to-face communication every day.

13. Egotism. ‘Selfies’ are the norm nowadays!

14. Medical care. Visits to Doctors too are dwindling in the First World.  Why spend time in a waiting room reading old magazines when the option exists to check your symptoms via specialist medical sites?  In the USA people in need of medical attention are increasingly using sites like WebMD or MayoClinic.org to get a video consultation via virtual health services like MDLIVE.

15. News. Television, radio news and newspapers are no longer the core centres for news items.

16. Dating & Divorcing. Blind dates and pub excursions are no longer necessarily the main means to meeting your match.  More than 40 million Americans have posted profiles to online dating sites like Match.com and eHarmony.  Breaking up a relationship is often done via SMS or email.  Respect as it used to be and social interaction are to some extent becoming obsolete.

17. Porno.  For better or worse, the web has revolutionized access to porn.

18. Cheating.  Copying and pasting from Wikipedia or downloading movies and music from torrent sites has become the norm.  Those receiving Royalties are directly impacted.

19. Job-hunting.  You no longer need to get your hair cut or your shoes shined to apply for a job.  More than 90 percent of job seekers in the First World look for work online, according to a survey by Beyond.com.

20. Accountability. Public figures used to be able to lie and get away with it for days, if not longer. The web has shrunk the fib-to-fact time effect down to just minutes.

21. Making Your Voice Heard.  Doing something outrageous to be noticed is no longer necessary.  Just Tweet something impactful and there will be a reaction.

22. Photo Albums.  Photo albums are no longer kept.   Simply click your family pic and post it on Facebook for everybody to see.

23. Languages.  You can now write something in one language and click a button to translate it into any number of other languages.  So you can now be literally fluent in dozens of tongues thank to services such as Google Translate and Bing Translator.

24. Cord cutting. Streaming media has freed many people from the shackles of cable and satellite TV providers.  And if you don’t know which show to watch, recommendation engines inside sites like Amazon Instant Video and Netflix can tell you what you’ll probably like.

25. Encyclopaedias.  No need to own an Encyclopaedia.  Just go to Wikipedia! 


References: www.yahoo.com and Wikipedia.


Ron Boon