Berners-Lee stars in Olympics opening ceremony

By Stuart Sumner
27 Jul 2012 View Comments
london-2012-opener

Sir Tim Berners-Lee has been feted during the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics in London this evening.

The inventor of the world-wide web, who put the first ever website online in 1991, appeared at a computer during the ceremony, which featured key events from Britain's history including the industrial revolution, the suffragette movement, and the development of the NHS.

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Berners-Lee's words 'This is for everyone' appeared on a screen at the event, and a message simultaneously appeared on his Twitter account:

"This is for everyone #london2012 #oneweb #openingceremony @webfoundation @w3c"

The event placed Berners-Lee on a par with other important figures from British history, including architect and industrialist Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

Berners-Lee now works closely with the government championing the cause of open and free data on the web.  He is one of the principal figures behind data.gov.uk, a government site that aims to open up data acquired for official purposes for free re-use.

The site is hosted on Amazon Web Services.

The Games will take place at venues across London and other parts of the UK throughout August and early September.  It has been forecast to cause widespread travel disruption for London's commuters.

Transport for London's CIO Steve Townsend recently told Computing about the business intelligence tools his organisation uses to help keep people moving around the city.

"We've got various modelling tools that our service people utilise to control the flow of traffic, including people, cars and heavy goods vehicles, around London. Some excellent modelling data comes off the back of congestion charging. It gives us an idea of what traffic is going where, how, and how often. We get similar data from ticket sales on the Underground and on buses."

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