The University of Tokyo

Curiosity and Innovation

Not Just GPS:
Basic Physics Research Opening Doors to New Worlds 2

[Internet] CERN and the WWW (World Wide Web)

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), which has recently gained attention for its discovery of the Higgs boson, is known not only as the world’s largest center for particle physics research, but also as the organization that created the mechanisms that gave life to the World Wide Web (WWW).

While working at CERN, computer scientist Dr. Tim Berners-Lee devised a system that employed the hypertext mechanism as a means of accessing information internally at CERN. He then realized that this system could be implemented globally to enable the sharing of information with scientists around the world. This became the prototype of the WWW. In 1993, CERN announced that it was opening up the WWW free of charge to everyone, thus making a significant contribution to the development of Internet culture since then. Physics research therefore indirectly brought about one of the world’s major innovations in the field of information technology.


Link to the world’s oldest website, restored to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the WWW.