Early internet pioneers receive award

Let's cruise, baby!

Have you ever uttered the words “information superhighway” or the “infobahn”? Or do you smugly deny even knowing what they are? :-)

Regardless of your capacity for geek trivia, you must admit that the talented folks who worked to bring the World Wide Web (W3) to life deserve our thanks. In fact, five of those original innovators received an award today for their accomplishments. 

From the CERN, European Organization for Nuclear Research, web site: 

“Five engineers whose work, beginning in the 1970s, led to the internet and the World Wide Web have together won the inaugural £1 million Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering.

Sharing the prize are Robert Kahn, Vinton Cerf and Louis Pouzin for their contributions to the protocols that make up the fundamental architecture of the internet, Tim Berners-Lee who created the World Wide Web at CERN in 1989, and Marc Andreessen who wrote the Mosaic browser that is credited with popularising the World Wide Web.

The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering rewards and celebrates individuals responsible for ground-breaking innovations in engineering that have been of global benefit to humanity.

Bob Kahn and Louis Pouzin took to the stage to accept the prize.

“Very honoured with Louis, Vint, Bob and Marc to be awarded the first QE prize for engineering,” tweeted Berners-Lee shortly after the announcement. “A credit to coders and standards geeks.”

The announcement was made today by Lord Browne of Madingley in the presence of HRH The Princess Royal at the Royal Academy of Engineering on 18 March 2013. The winners will come to London in June for the formal presentation of the prize by Her Majesty The Queen.

“I firmly believe our field’s best days are still ahead of us,” says winner Marc Andreessen, “and I can’t wait to see what the next generation of engineers will accomplish.”

Photo credit: CERN / Article by: Cian O’Luanaigh web editor at CERN

Take a look into the time machine at some of the first-generation web interfaces…

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