The Web is turning 30 years old this month and clearly we’ve come a long way since Tim-Berners Lee wrote his paper proposing an information management system to facilitate information-sharing between physicists in universities and institutes around the world. Nowadays it’s hard to imagine what life would be like without the web; it’s permeated virtually — and not so virtually — every aspect of our lives and shaped the way do things.

Although for many the web is synonymous with the internet, they’re actually two separate things. Simply put, the internet is the infrastructure upon which the web runs alongside things like email, instant messaging, cloud services, video calling, movie streaming, file-sharing, and the list goes so on. It’s not a stretch for people to make that mistake, though, as many things you do online can be done through a web browser — including the aforementioned email, messaging, and even watching Netflix.

Thirty years has brought along a lot of changes to the World Wide Web where we’ve witnessed how it evolved from static to brimming with activity and creativity. As we commemorate another anniversary let’s look back at some of the events and milestones that helped transform the web into what it is today.

 

November 2010

Google tells Gmail users Facebook is a trap

 

December 2010

UK government wants to block all Internet porn

November 2011

Adobe stops mobile Flash development, will focus on HTML5

 

May 2011

US Judge: an IP address is not a person

April 2012

Facebook buys Instagram for $1 billion, raising awareness of how incumbents were willing to part with big dollars for mobile web pioneers and the evident shift in usage favoring smartphones.

October 2013

The ‘Deep Web’ gains mainstream exposure after the FBI shuts down the Silk Road, a.k.a. “the eBay of drugs.”

 

June 2013

Edward Snowden’s disclosures about NSA’s mass surveillance programs start a conversation on what it means to be anonymous on the web.

Feb 2014

Facebook buys WhatsApp for $19 billion betting almost 10% of the company on mobile and instant communication.

2014

The net neutrality debate heats up as the FCC considers new rules for how the Internet works. Obama endorses net neutrality and asks the FCC to classify internet as a utility. And so the controversial and complicated issue begins…

 

February 2015

‘Father of the Internet’ Vint Cerf warns we could be heading towards a digital Dark Age.

2015

While ISPs in the developed world bring gigabit fiber to more places, repressed yet creative Cubans develop an illegal ‘Internet’ that connects thousands of computers.

 

September 2015

We’ve finally run out of IPv4 addresses

2015

Popular free VPN service, Hola, discovered to have malware-like behavior. Serves as a showcase of new ways to malware is distributed.

February 2016

It’s now possible to run Windows 95 natively in your web browser.

 

September 2016

Samsung abuses DMCA to take down GTA V exploding Note 7 mod videos.

 

2016

Microsoft is bleeding web browser users. Chrome takes over IE.

 

2016

Mobile web browsing becomes more popular than desktop for the first time

December 2016

The most common passwords of 2016 have been revealed, and they’re terrible (not much has changed).

September 2017

The Pirate Bay is using your CPU to mine cryptocurrencies while you browse

 

2017

Researchers warn of new botnet that could take down the internet

 

December 2017

It’s official: the FCC has killed net neutrality

2017

Infographic: the top 100 websites by popularity (in 2017)

September 2018

The inventor of the World Wide Web has unveiled a plan for a new secure internet

 

2018

Over 40 percent of activity on the internet is fake

 

2018

Half of all phishing sites display the padlock, making people think they’re safe

March 2019

The World Wide Web turns 30 years old, it’s been one hell of a ride!

It’s estimated that more than four billion people — or close to 60% of the world’s population is now online.