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Last Updated: Friday, 16 July, 2004, 12:46 GMT 13:46 UK
Creator of the web turns knight
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the web
Sir Tim did not try to make money out of his invention
Tim Berners-Lee, the British inventor of the world wide web, has received his knighthood from the Queen.

The "father of the web", who already has an OBE, went to Buckingham Palace to get his reward for "services to the global development of the internet".

In 1991, the knight of the web came up with a system to organise, link and browse pages on the net.

Famously modest, he said he had just been "in the right place at the right time" and did not want his photo taken.

During the hour-long ceremony held in the Ballroom at the Palace, the Queen knighted Sir Tim using the sword that belonged to her father, King George VI.

Free expression

After the ceremony, he played down his achievements, saying: "I suppose it's amazing when you think how many things people get involved in that don't work.

The first ever web server on which Sir Tim invented the web
Born in London in 1955
Read physics at Queen's College, Oxford
Banned from using university PC for hacking
Built own computer with old TV, a Motorola microprocessor and soldering iron
Created web in late 1980s and early 1990s at Cern
Offered it free on the net
Founded World Wide Web Consortium at MIT in 1994
Named by Time magazine as one of the top 20 thinkers of the 20th century
Knighted in 2003
"It's very heartening that this one actually did."

Denying his creation had been anything like a "Eureka moment", he said: "I think when you have a lot of jumbled up ideas they come together slowly over a period of several years."

Sir Tim created his hypertext program while he was at the particle physics institute, Cern, in Geneva.

The code he crafted made it far easier for scientists to share their research and information across a fledgling computer network.

His hypertext program created a system to organise, link and browse net pages.

The scientist did not wish to make money from his invention and so did not go on to privatise the program.

Instead, he wanted it to be used to expand the potential of the web as a channel for free expression and collaboration.

Sir Tim currently heads up the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston, where he is now based as an academic.

He is now working on an idea called the "semantic web", which is about giving more meaning to what is on the web so that search results become more "intelligent".

MPs to criticise honours system
13 Jul 04  |  Politics
New honour for the web's inventor
15 Apr 04  |  Technology
Net guru peers into web's future
25 Sep 03  |  Technology
Web's inventor gets a knighthood
31 Dec 03  |  Technology
Web pioneer scoops Japan Prize
14 Dec 01  |  Science/Nature

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