Original source code for World Wide Web written by Tim Berners-Lee on Steve Jobs’ NeXTcube up for auction

The original source code for the World Wide Web that was written by its inventor Tim Berners-Lee on a NeXTcube from Steve Jobs’ NeXT Computer is up for sale at Sotheby’s as part of a non-fungible token, with bids currently starting at just $1,000.

The original NeXT computer used by Sir Tim Berners-Lee to design the World Wide Web and host the first web page at the European laboratory for particle physics, CERN, in December 1990. In March 1989 Tim Berners-Lee wrote a document on “Information Management: A Proposal” for colleagues at CERN. His boss, Mike Sendall, described the proposal as ‘vague but exciting…’ and, in 1990, approved the purchase of the NeXT computer. This was the ideal platform for Berners-Lee to demonstrate his vision, merging the ideas of hypertext with the power of the Internet. The machine was the first web server and to turn it off would have simply meant turning off the World Wide Web, an idea which is inconceivable to us today. (Source: <a href="https://artsandculture.google.com/asset/original-next-computer-used-by-sir-tim-berners-lee-to-design-the-world-wide-web-next/6QHcxbuGnQ4rng?hl=en">Science Museum, London</a>)
The original NeXT computer used by Sir Tim Berners-Lee to design the World Wide Web and host the first web page at the European laboratory for particle physics, CERN, in December 1990. In March 1989 Tim Berners-Lee wrote a document on “Information Management: A Proposal” for colleagues at CERN. His boss, Mike Sendall, described the proposal as ‘vague but exciting…’ and, in 1990, approved the purchase of the NeXT computer. This was the ideal platform for Berners-Lee to demonstrate his vision, merging the ideas of hypertext with the power of the Internet. The NeXTcube was the first web server and to turn it off would have simply meant turning off the World Wide Web. (Source: Science Museum, London)

Guy Faulconbridg for Reuters:

The digitally signed Ethereum blockchain non-fungible token (NFT), a one-of-a-kind digital asset which records ownership, includes the original source code, an animated visualization, a letter written by Berners-Lee and a digital poster of the full code from the original files.

“Why an NFT? Well, it’s a natural thing to do… when you’re a computer scientist and when you write code and have been for many years,” Berners-Lee said in a statement. “It feels right to digitally sign my autograph on a completely digital artefact.”

The files contain 9,555 lines of code including implementations of the three languages and protocols invented by Berners-Lee: HTML (Hypertext Markup Language), HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol), and URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers).

Also included are original HTML documents that instructed early web users on how to use the application.

Bids for the NFT, a way of asserting ownership of a digital asset, start at $1,000 in a standalone online auction titled “This Changed Everything” running from June 23-30.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s always nice to be reminded that the World Wide Web was not created on some piece of sheet Windows PC. The Web was created on Steve Jobs’ forerunner to the modern Mac.

Steve Jobs

See also: The Web at 25: Created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee on Steve Jobs’ NeXTcube — March 11, 2014

More info about the auction via Sotheby’s here.

5 Comments

    1. I do remember Al Gore talking about The Worldwide Webb and while he obviously didn’t invent it, it was the first time I heard anyone mention it. I had no idea what he was talking about. Like many others he did see what an important technology this would be to us all.

        1. That does not excuse his lies, but libturds fully except lies from others as long as the come from other libturds.

          To anger a conservative tell a lie.
          To anger a libturd tell the truth.

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