[alt.hypertext] Re: Qualifiers on Hypertext links...

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Aug 9, 1991, 6:00:29 AM8/9/91
Archive-name: auto/alt.hypertext/Qualifiers-on-Hypertext-links...
Original-posting-by: timbl@info .cern.ch (Tim Berners-Lee)
Original-subject: Re: Qualifiers on Hypertext links...
Reposted-by: ad...@soda.berkeley.edu

In article <1991Aug...@ardor.enet.dec.com> kan...@ardor.enet.dec.com (Nari
Kannan) writes:
> Is anyone reading this newsgroup aware of research or development efforts
> the
> following areas:
> 1. Hypertext links enabling retrieval from multiple heterogeneous sources
> information?

The WorldWideWeb (WWW) project aims to allow links to be made to any
information anywhere. The address format includes an access method
(=namespace), and for most name spaces a hostname and some sort of path.

We have a prototype hypertext editor for the NeXT, and a browser for line mode
terminals which runs on almost anything. These can access files either locally,
NFS mounted, or via anonymous FTP. They can also go out using a simple protocol
(HTTP) to a server which interprets some other data and returns equivalent
hypertext files. For example, we have a server running on our mainframe
(http://cernvm.cern.ch/FIND in WWW syntax) which makes all the CERN computer
center documentation available. The HTTP protocol allows for a keyword search
on an index, which generates a list of matching documents as annother virtual
hypertext document.

If you're interested in using the code, mail me. It's very prototype, but
available by anonymous FTP from info.cern.ch. It's copyright CERN but free
distribution and use is not normally a problem.

The NeXTstep editor can also browse news. If you are using it to read this,
then click on this: <http://info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html> to find
out more about the project. We haven't put the news access into the line mode
browser yet.

We also have code for a hypertext server. You can use this to make files
available (like anonymous FTP but faster because it only uses one connection).
You can also hack it to take a hypertext address and generate a virtual
hypertext document from any other data you have - database, live data etc. It's
just a question of generating plain text or SGML (ugh! but standard) mark-up on
the fly. The browsers then parse it on the fly.

The WWW project was started to allow high energy physicists to share data,
news, and documentation. We are very interested in spreading the web to other
areas, and having gateway servers for other data. Collaborators welcome! I'll
post a short summary as a separate article.

Tim Berners-Lee ti...@info.cern.ch
World Wide Web project Tel: +41(22)767 3755
CERN Fax: +41(22)767 7155
1211 Geneva 23, Switzerland (usual disclaimer)

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