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12 June 2009, 16:17

Sir Tim Berners-Lee to open access to UK Government public data

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Sir Tim Berners-Lee
Sir Tim Berners-Lee
Source: Photo by Silvio Tanaka (CC-BY-SA)
According to a BBC report yesterday, the UK government has asked the 'father of the World Wide Web' Sir Tim Berners-Lee to be responsible for opening up access to government held public data. Berners-Lee told the BBC that he felt the job was an important task that went beyond the boundaries of party politics.

Although Berners-Lee was born in London in 1955, he currently lives in Boston in the United States and is a Professor at MIT. He is also a Professor at the University of Southampton, UK. Recently Berners-Lee has been giving talks on the subject of access to public data, saying "Government data, the people's data, is an important component to the larger Linked Open Data movement,".

Berners-Lee came up with the idea of networked hyper-text in 1989 while working at CERN the European Centre for Nuclear Research and developed it into the first web site, a site that explained what the World Wide Web was, and how one could use a browser and set up a Web server. This site went on-line at CERN in 1991 and this year CERN celebrated 20 years of the World Wide Web.

Three years later at MIT Berners-Lee founded the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) which "develops interoperable technologies (specifications, guidelines, software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential."

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