On 18th May 2018, I got this excellent opportunity of listening to one of the greatest minds, who paved the way for today’s technology. Without him, we would not have been able to think about searching anything on Google. Without him, we would not have been able to upload our selfies to any social media. Could you guess who is that?
He is Sir Tim Berners Lee.
And to all those, who are unaware of him,
Who is Sir Tim Berners Lee?
Sir Timothy John Berners Lee, also known as Tim Berners Lee is an English Engineer and Computer Scientist. He is currently a professor of Computer Science at Oxford University and a Turing Award winner.
Tim Berners Lee is the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) which oversees the continued development of the web. He is also the founding chair at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL).
You would be surprised to know, what he invented.
He is the one who invented World Wide Web (www), while he was working at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory. He is the one who invented the first successful communication between hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) server and client in the year 1989.
Coming to this exclusive talk,
An exclusive talk by Sir Tim Berners Lee:
I was aware of Sir Tim Berners Lee’s visit to SSNCE and I registered to attend this event, after coming to know, he is the founder of World Wide Web (WWW). The exclusive talk went for around 1:30 hrs. During this talk, he spoke in brief about the history of World Wide Web and the future of Artifical Intelligence.
Note: I couldn’t get everything he spoke. There were two reasons for this. One is because it was more of technical stuff. A Computer Science or an IT engineer would have been able to understand a lot more than me because I belong to a different branch. I cannot do anything for this. But, the second reason was his British Accent. It clearly points out my incapability. I should get myself exposed to more of this kind of talks.
Takeaways as a Blogger:
Tim Berners Lee talked briefly from the beginning of his Idea of World Wide Web till the future research area. But, as a Blogger, I noted some specific things related to Blogging.
His thoughts about Blogs:
During his exclusive talk, he mentioned about Blogs and I got stirred up,
… There is a lot of rubbish on the internet. And there are blogs. Blogs are actually fun. People actually enjoy writing blogs. And so, that webpage serves a very useful content.
As a Blogger, I was glad to hear someone praising blogs.
He mentioned about Google Adsense too:
After talking about blogs, he went on with Adsense too
…. There is a Google Ad system. This ad system is actually a machine. It connects the clients (advertisers) and publishers. As they earn, when someone clicks. This lead to more of silly stuff on the internet. As people do write as silly about Hilary or Trump and earn money…
This might look a complaint. But, he points out an emerging issue. Even, I did come across a lot of websites, offering low-quality content and the site is filled with Adsense ads. These websites look like crap. Their motive is just to earn money. They don’t offer any value to the reader.
This is another big reason for the rapid spread of fake news nowadays. When someone puts fake news, obviously people will visit the webpage to check that. Those sites will get a lot of traffic, resulting in a lot of money.
As an ethical blogger, we must not support such kind of stuff.
He did cover about Facebook too:
… Facebook, the social media platform initially allowed the users to like others post. And, now they have these expressions like sad, angry. These expressions make Facebook as a whole community…
Well, this just points how Facebook is growing as a whole community. To support this point, I would like to mention the changes in Facebook algorithms. Due to which, the organic reach of posts published by pages have decreased and users see more posts from their Facebook friends.
This might be a downfall for Facebook marketing. Because it forces all Business people to spend money on Facebook ads. As an early adoption, Bloggers have already started to move towards other platforms for marketing.
The Future of the Web:
And this is the most important part of this talk, as I guess. A faculty raised a question on what areas the present Indian engineers should research on.
Among many areas Sir Tim Berners Lee mentioned, there are two key areas, as a Blogger, we must focus on. They are:
- Decentralization of web
- Semantic web
What does that Decentralization of web means?
Before I come to this, I will tell you what is centralization and what is decentralization. If the authority is focused on one particular position, then it is called Centralization. If it is split into multiple levels, then it is called decentralization.
I will explain you with an example.
Just think about this internet. If you want to search or browse something, where will you go? You would go to Google. And, if you want to share something, you will be doing that on Facebook and if it is anything professional, then it goes to LinkedIn. If you need to watch a video, you go to Youtube, which again belongs to Google.
See, there are very few companies that are controlling almost the entire web. And, this we call it as centralization of the web. And, this centralization has a greater chance of failure in the future. It reduces the opportunities for new companies.
And, that brings us to the next research area – Decentralization of web or you simply call it as Web 3.0
To read in depth about this decentralization of web, check this article.
What is semantic web?
According to Wikipedia,
The Semantic Web is an extension of the World Wide Web through standards by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The standards promote common data formats and exchange protocols on the Web, most fundamentally the Resource Description Framework (RDF). According to the W3C, “The Semantic Web provides a common framework that allows data to be shared and reused across application, enterprise, and community boundaries”. The Semantic Web is therefore regarded as an integrator across different content, information applications, and systems.
Well, that looks a little complicated to understand, right?
He is a simpler way of explanation of Semantic Web by Tim Berners Lee,
I have a dream for the Web [in which computers] become capable of analyzing all the data on the Web – the content, links, and transactions between people and computers. A “Semantic Web“, which makes this possible, has yet to emerge, but when it does, the day-to-day mechanisms of trade, bureaucracy, and our daily lives will be handled by machines talking to machines. The “intelligent agents” people have touted for ages will finally materialize.
I do understand, this is too early to talk how Decentralization of Web or Web 3.0 and Semantic Web will affect Bloggers and Search Engines. But, this is just an early alert, that we must always be ready for Search Engine Updates to ensure that our website sustains for a longer period.
Here are some more relevant articles for you to read: