What did the Internet look like before there were browsers?
The World Wide Web itself debuted on August 6, 1991.
By November, 1992, there were 26 websites in the world, largely academic.
Only two years later, on April 22, 1993, NCSA Mosaic, Version 1.0, the first cross-platform browser, was released.
Its co-developer, Marc Andreeson, had first showed it a few months before, on January 23, 1993.
Mosaic was developed by Andreeson and Eric Bina, college students at the University of Illinois’s National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).
It was designed to add a graphical user interface to the World Wide Web.
Andreeson and Bina introduced the convention of turning clickable HTML links blue and underlinging them so readers would know they were active.
They allowed users to incorporate video, bookmarks, images and audio files all in a single file, instead of showing each type of file in a different window.
For the first time, users could develop web pages that looked like magazines, with images sprinkled throughout, instead of individual boxes of text and images popping up on top of each other.
It was easy to install and, though not entirely open source, free for internal use by corporations.
Written first for MIT’s X-Windows, by September, 1993, versions for the Macintosh and Windows were available, making Mosaic the first cross-platform browser.
Andreeson left the Mosaic project when he graduated from college in 1993.
Along with investor, Jim Clark, he founded Netscape Communications Corporation around a new version of an Internet browser he developed by the same name.
Netscape Navigator was released on October 13, 1994.
Netscape was acquired by AOL in October, 1998.
Mosaic was eventually licensed to Spyglass and used as the foundation of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer.
Just before the AOL acquisition, Netscape released its source code to a non-profit, the Mozilla Organization, later the Mozilla Foundation.
They developed a new browser, now called Firefox.
Although companies that measure browser usage, or number of hits by users, may differ on the details, their statistics support, in general, w3schools.com’s March, 2013, snapshot of the most popular browsers:
- Chrome: 51.7%
- Firefox: 28.5%
- Internet Explorer: 13.0%
- Safari: 4.1%
- Opera: 1.8%
What browser do you use?
Do you remember the browser wars?
How often do you change browsers and why?
Did you ever use command lines in the early Internet days?
To you and making the world of information easy for your grandchildren to reach.
Carol Covin, Granny-Guru
Share and Enjoy!
Originally posted here:
What Was the First Web Browser Available to the Public and Who Developed It?