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25 Years of the Internet

23 Aug 16  | ICT |  Technology
25 Years of the World Wide Web

25 years ago today, on 23rd August 1991, access to the World Wide Web was released to the general public, and the age of the Internet began.

The last two and a half decades have seen an incredible rate of progress and innovation when it comes to the Internet - we've come from a single web page, the only purpose of which was to inform people of the process of setting up further pages, to an inter-connected web of unimaginable proportions. 

The Internet was first conceptualised by Tim Berners-Lee, who dreamed of an internationally accessible information repository, while working at CERN in 1989. He hoped to find a way for scientists around the world to work together more easily. 

Tim Berners-Lee's original concept proposal

Thoughts from CBSbutler's IT Recruitment Team

"The Internet has dramatically changed how we recruit: people's career history is now available to all, wrapped up in one huge database. The vast majority of people have their CV stored online somewhere, whether it be on the more 'traditional' job boards, on a social media site like LinkedIn or GitHub, on a personal blog or even industry forums. This vast pool of information gives every recruiter, both agency and internal, the opportunity to contact potential 'talent', interact with them and discuss roles regardless of the time of day or night, or indeed respective time zone!"
 - Alex Froude, IT Divisional Manager

It's amazing that the Internet has been around for 25 years! It provides us all with the vast majority of our information and entertainment - for some, access to the Internet has even become an addiction: China actually has rehabilitation camps to help treat addicts!
 - Mohamed Mahmoud, IT Recruitment Consultant

"It's brilliant that as we recruit for the IT sector, our most useful tool is, in fact, the Internet! The world wide web allows us to connect with a wider talent pool than ever before, interacting with people across the globe and in a spectacular variety of related sectors, and gives us our most valuable resource in pairing candidates and clients in the most efficient and successful manner possible."
 - Fraser Hamilton, IT Recruitment Consultant

13 fascinating facts about the Internet:

Almost 40% of the world's total population is regularly connected to the Internet. For perspective, only 89% of people worldwide have access to clean water, and as few as 65% have adequate sanitation. 

The Internet and the World Wide Web are different things. Though often spoken of interchangeably, the Internet and the Web are actually slightly different facets of the same entity: the internet is the global system of interconnected computer networks - a network of networks, if you will - while the Web is the system we use to access and share information across those networks.

The Internet hit the 50-million user mark in only 4 years. In contrast, it took TV 13 years to hit the same goal, while radio and the telephone took 38 and 75 years respectively.

URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator.

More than 100,000 new .com domains are registered every day and there are roughly 1,070,289,000 websites live online right now (23/08/16). The billion-website-mark was first reached in September 2014, though it then dipped back down, before re-reaching the 1 billion mark in March 2016. 

On an average day, 12-16% of Google queries are unique, and have never been asked of Google before. 

Roughly 205 billion emails are sent every day. 4.3 billion people worldwide use email in some form, and the average office worker receives 121 emails per day. 70-90% of all emails sent are spam. 

The very first email was sent in 1971 4.3 by Ray Tomlinson. He sent it to himself, from one computer 

Approximately 9 million adults in Britain, and a third of Italians, have never used the Internet, while many of us cannot imagine a single day without it. 

30,000+ websites are hacked every single day. Some hacks cause no harm, others cause untold damage to businesses, organisations and even governments. It's a little insane how much stock we put into something so vulnerable to attack!

In 2010, Finland made internet access a legal right 4.3 for its citizens. It was the first country to do so.

313 million people use Twitter on a monthly basis, creating around 500 millions tweets per day. Roughly 72 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute, and five new Facebook profiles are created every second (which is probably why there are 83 million fake profiles!). Every 60 seconds, 510 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated and 136,000 photos are uploaded to Facebook.

Humans only create about 40% of the Internet traffic - the rest is made by bots: software applications which automatically perform simple tasks, including innocuous ones such as search engine crawls, as well as more irritating jobs like generating spam email. 

The very first webcam was created to monitor whether the coffee pot needed refreshing. Seriously - in 1993 researchers at Cambridge University built the first webcam so that they could check if there was coffee in the pot before they made the arduous journey across the office/lab. It's a hard world to live in.


The Internet has changed our societies in more ways than we could possibly have imagined, bringing the four corners of the globe neatly onto a 5 inch screen in your hand. As never before, we can talk to and collaborate with people from every country on the planet, providing untold opportunities for innovation and invention. 

The Internet is, admittedly, a spectacular vehicle for procrastination and is undoubtedly responsible for more lost working hours than anything else, but it is also one of our finest, most valuable resources, bringing education and communication to all, and provides us with more prospects for a brighter tomorrow than almost any other facet of modern life. 

Are you looking for work in the IT or engineering sectors? Get in touch with CBSbutler - we specialise in placing hard-to-find talent with their best opportunities. Check out our available jobs here, send your CV to or give us a call on +44 (0) 1737 822000 for a confidential chat about your future.
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