NFT Of The World Wide Web Source Code Sells For $5.4 Million

Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the internet

On Wednesday, 32 years after English computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee penned “Information Management: A Proposal,” the genesis of the World Wide Web, Sotheby’s auctioned the Web’s original source code for $5.4 million. It was, of course, in the form of a nonfungible token aka an NFT.

The source code for the Web was sold to an anonymous buyer, according to Sotheby’s. There were a total of 51 bids on the NFT.

“NFTs, be they artworks or a digital artifact like this, are the latest playful creations in this realm, and the most appropriate means of ownership that exists, Berners-Lee said in a statement about the auction. “They are the ideal way to package the origins behind the Web.”

Sotheby conducted the auction, titled “This changed everything” from June 23 through June 30 with the bidding starting at $1,000. The British-founded global marketplace for art collectibles has recently added digital collectibles such as NFTs to its offerings. The proceeds from the $5.4 million will go toward initiatives that Tim Berners-Lee supports, including his open source technology Solid.

NFTs are rapidly becoming a way for members of the digital community to create a virtual museum and document historic moments on the internet, whether that was the $4 million sale of the Doge meme NFT or when Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey sold an NFT of his first tweet for $2.9 million or when digital artist Itzel Yard sold an NFT art made from the key of the first Tor Browser, making her the highest-selling female NFT artist.

Gauthier Zuppinger is the co-founder of nonfungible.com, a database that tracks the sales of NFTs and crypto collectibles. He compared the source code to CryptoPunks, one of the first non-fungible tokens on the Ethereum blockchain. Zuppinger says the code’s singularity and its monumental role in the foundation of the digital world contributed to the skyrocketing bidding price for the NFT.

So what exactly does the anonymous buyer receive? It doesn’t receive any unique usage rights because the source code for the web has been public domain since 1991 when CERN released the worldwide web code library.

The NFT itself contains a myriad of technical tid-bits and gemstones in the history of the Web. The four elements include the original time-stamped files containing the code that was written between October,1990, and August, 1991. The 9,555 lines of code written in the Objective-C programming language depicts the application of three inventions made by the physicist-turned-software engineer: HTML (Hypertext Markup Language); HTTP (Hyper Transfer Protocol); and URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers). The buyer will also receive a letter from Berners-Lee, an animated visualization and a digital poster of the code.

“As people seem to appreciate the autographed versions of books, now we have NFT technology, I thought it could be fun to make an autographed copy of the original code of the first web browser,” Berners-Lee’s statement reads.

Apart from being the man behind the Web, Berners-Lee is also a director of the World Wide Web consortium, which looks over the development of the Web. As the co-founder and chief technology officer of Inrupt, he is honing open source technology called Solid to come closer to his original vision for the Web to be a shared information space for all members of the society.

Dr. Merav Ozair, an expert on cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology and a fintech faculty member at Rutgers Business School, compared the NFT sale of the World Wide Web source code to the historic moment when the founding fathers of the United States of America signed the Declaration of Independence. The only difference is that the code that created the web also changed the way the world functions today.

“This was also a historic moment when he created a code that initiated everything, and this is not something only for the U.S. it’s for the global community, everywhere,” she says.

Ozair says the auction marks the kick off of Web 3.0, a version of the web where cryptocurrencies thrive.

The source code for the web is already public domain. In fact, Berners-Lee fought with CERN officials for it to be that way, says Marc Webber, the curatorial director of the internet history program at the Computer History Museum.

“It’s a little bit paradoxical. You know, you’ve got an NFT on this completely public domain open thing,” says Webber, who has been researching the history of the web since 1995.

The auction has instigated curiosity about web history, Webber says. But the commodification of computer and technology history could make it difficult for museum curators like him to procure such digital artifacts when NFTs offer the owner lump sum pay-offs and a wide audience.

Webber says that Berners-Lee has had multiple opportunities to cash in on his invention but has always chosen not to so that the web remains in the public domain. “I do know that this is not like a simple ploy to get money,” he says.

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I write about tech startups and innovation. I am receiving my master’s degree in magazine journalism from the University of Missouri. I’ve previously written and worked for Vox Magazine in Columbia, Missouri and Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City.

Source: NFT Of The World Wide Web Source Code Sells For $5.4 Million

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Critics:

A non-fungible token (NFT) is a unit of data stored on a digital ledger, called a blockchain, that certifies a digital asset to be unique and therefore not interchangeable. NFTs can be used to represent items such as photos, videos, audio, and other types of digital files. Access to any copy of the original file, however, is not restricted to the buyer of the NFT. While copies of these digital items are available for anyone to obtain, NFTs are tracked on blockchains to provide the owner with a proof of ownership that is separate from copyright.

The NFT market value tripled in 2020, reaching more than $250 million. During the first quarter of 2021, NFT sales exceeded $2 billion. A non-fungible token (NFT) is a unit of data stored on a digital ledger, called a blockchain, which can be sold and traded. The NFT can be associated with a particular digital or physical asset (a file or a physical object) and a license to use the asset for a specified purpose. NFTs (and the associated license to use, copy or display the underlying asset) can be traded and sold on digital markets.

NFTs function like cryptographic tokens, but unlike cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, are not mutually interchangeable, in other words, not fungible (e.g. one bitcoin is equivalent to any other bitcoin while every NFT may represent a different underlying asset and thus have a different value). NFTs are created when blockchains string records of cryptographic hash, a set of characters identifying a set of data, onto previous records therefore creating a chain of identifiable data blocks.

This cryptographic transaction process ensures the authentication of each digital file by providing a digital signature that is used to track NFT ownership. However, data links that point to details like where the art is stored can die.The speculative market for NFTs has led more investors to trade at greater volumes and rates.The buying surge of NFTs was called an economic bubble by experts, who also compared it to the Dot-com bubble.

By mid-April 2021, demand appeared to have substantially subsided, causing prices to fall significantly; early buyers were reported to have “done supremely well” by Bloomberg Businessweek. An NFT of the source code of the World Wide Web, credited to internet inventor computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee, was auctioned in June 2021 by Sotheby’s in London, and was sold for USD$5.4

References

Three Changes That Will Make Rural 5G Access A Reality

Woman traveler using laptop computer while enjoying sunset in mountains. Freelancer girl working on netbook during vacation holidays in autumn. Distant work and travel, freelance as lifestyle concept.

In 2018 it was estimated by the Global Workplace Analytics that 3.6% of U.S. workers completely worked at home, five days a week. That’s a sluggish 173% change in a 13 year period. 2020 arrives and 85% of us are at home working (per choice or necessity). The US economy has only shrunk by 3.5% in 2020 even although 8 in 10 of us are in vastly different work surroundings with dogs barking, kids rightly needing constant help, support and entertaining. Something has actually gone right.

One of the logical reasons for why GDP has not been so severely damaged is the availability of high speed internet (HSI) to provide a fast, digital office space at home. But consider:

 

  • 48% of applications run on the cloud according to IDG so access to those applications needs bandwidth no matter where you are.
  • The average amount of time on a phone each day for an American worker is 56 minutes Access to a quality connection has increasingly become a barrier or a differentiator for employees.
  • Kids (and maybe us) are spending five to six hours a day on Zoom. The lack of bandwidth (cell phone or laptop) again causes an issue where employees cannot express, collaborate or present their ideas in the best ways.

If you live in an area where the speed of internet access is slow, (I’m defining HSI as having download speeds of at least 25Mbps and uploads of at least 3Mbps),

how much of a disadvantage are you, and your children, put in?  How much could your opportunity and income be affected, or existing gaps amplified?

Think of this disparity, the 2021 FCC Broadband Deployment Report shows 98.8% of urban dwellers have access to HSI. Only 82.7% of rural dwellers can say the same. Stretch that to tribal areas and we are down in the low 79.1%. Of the 15 million people who can’t access HSI, roughly 80% of them live in rural areas.   Why should people who are able to do identical work not have access to the same essential infrastructure?

5G and the intelligent edge creates a radical shift in economics

To effectively create a rural network that enables all citizens in the digital economy, means investing in 5G technology for both wireless and fixed networks. The 5G standard empowers a broader scope of use cases than ever before, with faster speeds, wider coverage areas, and improved security from the previous 4G networks.

But, it’s no use building this new network if people can’t afford it. And that’s where the intelligent edge comes in. It moves real-time computing power close to where it’s generated, meaning easier deployments and lower operational costs. Combining 5G with the intelligent edge can provide the same workload performance with less overhead, resulting in significantly lower cost. And when building the intelligent rural network, keeping costs under control will be a key factor in making it affordable to everyone.

The promise of Open RAN for rural networks

RAN (Radio Network Access) is the “last mile” of a network, the visible link from the network to a mobile phone. Operators have been working to open up RAN protocols and remove dependency on single-vendor systems. Already, large operators such as Orange, Vodafone, and MTN are planning to use virtual (vRAN) and Open RAN to bring coverage to new markets, because it provides more choices for equipment providers, lower TCO, and it is easier to upgrade parts as needed.

For rural networks where cost is a large factor in deploying new networks or upgrading outdated ones, Open RAN provides the opportunity for competitive bidding and frees CSPs to choose the best technical solutions for the situation, rather than being tied to single-vendor offerings. When talking about rural connectivity, Open RAN plus 5G create a promising combination.

Leveraging the intelligent edge and AI analytics to reduce costs

Past projects have shown that the costs involved in standing up networks over a large physical area have been considerable. Intelligent rural networks can leverage powerful new technology like distributed clouds and edge computing to bring down the cost.

Rural networks will also require remote, large-scale management and monitoring. End-to-end automation and AI-based analytics as integral parts of the network design and implementation can work to lower ongoing costs, as well as keep networks up and running efficiently. Given the large geographical areas involved, these management and monitoring tools also need to work remotely so that when issues arise, they can be handled quickly by technical staff.

Increasing opportunity for everyone

In the age of information, digital access is an imperative to ensure every citizen has an equal opportunity to thrive. If we fail to act now, we are failing a future generation. Imagine a broadband network that covers every single village, town, and city of America. Imagine fast, secure, and reliable internet at an affordable price—no matter where you live. Imagine the power of connecting fully wired smart cities to the “clever countryside,” building a nationwide economic network that provides a wide range of opportunities for everyone.

CHIEF PRODUCT OFFICER

Cyra Richardson is responsible for product strategy and execution, focused on driving digital transformation for our customers. A demonstrated technical entrepreneurial leader in AI, IoT, and embedded technology, she has delivered numerous significant products to markets worldwide across multiple platforms and has several patents to her name.

She spent 20+ years at Microsoft where she served in a range of leadership roles, most recently as General Manager of AI and IoT, as well as the AI and robotics incubation, focused on growth and business development for Microsoft’s global business AI and IoT markets. She was responsible for driving acquisition of technology and organizations for teams across Microsoft, as well as the integration and partnerships for IoT, including Microsoft’s machine learning and research technology. She was also a Windows Embedded engineering leader and group program manager. Prior to Microsoft, she was at Amazon.com as a business and technical leader, responsible for business/technical strategy and implementation/daily management for the Modern Mobile Web consumer shopping experience

Source: Three Changes That Will Make Rural 5G Access A Reality. The Dream Of A Workforce Empowered To Thrive No Matter Where It Lives

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Find out why Alaska Communications team used wireless and not fiber to serve the community with broadband connectivity and hear what they have to say about it. Download full Case Study here: https://hubs.ly/H0ptFGv0 Follow RADWIN on: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RADWIN.ltd Twitter: https://twitter.com/radwin LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/radwin/
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Can 5G Replace Everybody’s Home Broadband?

When it comes to the possibility of home broadband competition, we want to believe. And in the case of 5G mobile broadband, wireless carriers want us to believe, too. But whether or not technological and commercial realities will reward that faith remains unclear. As with 5G smartphones, the basic challenge here sits at the intersection of the electromagnetic spectrum and telecom infrastructure economics.

When delivered over millimeter-wave frequencies and their copious amounts of free spectrum, 5G can match the speed and latency of fiber-optic broadband, with downloads of 1 gigabit per second and ping times under 10 milliseconds. But on those frequencies of 24GHz and up, signals struggle to reach more than a thousand feet outdoors.

Carriers can fix that by building many more cell sites, each with its own fiber backhaul, but a fiber-to-the-block build-out may not be appreciably cheaper than fiber-to-the-home deployments. And while residences don’t move and don’t mind wireless antennas larger than a shirt pocket—unlike individual wireless subscribers—residences also have walls that often block mmWave signals. (Presumably also unlike individual wireless subscribers.)

The other frequency flavors of 5G (the low- and mid-band ones) don’t suffer mmWave’s allergies to distance or drywall. But they also can’t match its speed or its spectrum availability—which in the context of residential broadband means they may not sustain uncapped bandwidth.

So as much as residential customers might yearn for an alternative to their local telecom monopoly—or for any form of high-speed access besides laggy connectivity from satellites in geosynchronous orbit—5G doesn’t yet rank as a sure thing. There’s a promise, but many things still need to go right for that promise to be fulfilled.

Or, as New Street Research analyst Jonathan Chaplin phrased things in an email: “If your fundamental question is ‘will 5G allow you to dump Comcast’ the answer is absolutely! Depending.”

Verizon’s bet on millimeter-wave broadband

Consider the 5G Home service that Verizon Wireless launched in parts of Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, and Sacramento in October 2018 (later expanded to parts of Chicago).

At $70 a month for unlimited data—with a $20 discount if you have a $30 or higher Verizon Wireless smartphone plan—and with download speeds from 300 to 940 megabits per second, the service would compare well with cable even if so many cable Internet plans didn’t include data caps and slap on modem-rental fees.

Reddit threads about the service in Houston, Sacramento and elsewhere offer a mix of praise for its performance (including reports of upload speeds in the range of 200Mbps, significantly faster than what most cable services offer) and complaints about it not being available at individual redditors’ addresses.

Verizon's 5G Houston coverage as of December 2019, with 5G "Ultra Wideband" in dark pink. For an idea of how much of the Houston metro this covers, you can zoom out from the same location at <a href="https://www.google.com/maps/place/Houston,+TX/@29.733833,-95.429167,14z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x8640b8b4488d8501:0xca0d02def365053b!8m2!3d29.7604267!4d-95.3698028">this Google Maps link</a>.
Enlarge / Verizon’s 5G Houston coverage as of December 2019, with 5G “Ultra Wideband” in dark pink. For an idea of how much of the Houston metro this covers, you can zoom out from the same location at this Google Maps link.

“Towards the beginning of service, there were a few firmware issues with the modem Verizon provided, but they patched that within a month,” said a software engineer in Sacramento who asked not to be named. “Since then, there’s not been significant downtime that I noticed.”

“Overall I’m happy with my 5G,” wrote another 5G Home user in Houston who runs a crisis-management firm. “No downtime that I can remember. I don’t have my exact speeds but it seems pretty quick. More than enough for my TV streaming and Web surfing.”

“There were only a few short (less than 30 min?) cases of 5G service downtime that I can recall, and they were all mostly toward the beginning of my service, so I imagine they were able to fix those stability issues quickly enough,” wrote Vincent Garcia, a software engineer in Sacramento. “My speeds seem to be the same as when I first got the service: 300-600 Mbps down, 120-140 Mbps up.”

Garcia noted one other benefit: “One interesting thing I’ve noticed is that other ISPs in my area seem to have stepped up their game in terms of value (at least in terms of their initial contract period).”

One early fear raised about millimeter-wave 5G, that it would suffer from “rain fade” akin to what cuts out satellite-TV reception during showers, doesn’t yet appear to have emerged as a serious problem. Those Reddit discussions about Verizon’s service don’t mention it, while a Twitter search reveals no firsthand reports of rain-faded 5G.

Ashutosh Dutta, a research scientist at the Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory, pointed to a 2019 study by researchers at the Indian Institute of Information Technology Kalyani and the University of Calcutta’s Institute of Radio Physics and Electronics in West Bengal, India. They found that “proper fade mitigation techniques” can keep even heavy rain from disrupting millimeter-wave communication at frequencies up to 40 GHz. Verizon’s 5G Home, at 28 and 39 GHz, sits on the forgiving side of that line.

Source: Can 5G replace everybody’s home broadband? | Ars Technica

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What is 5G? Why do you want it in your home? What type of speeds does 5G promise? We’ll discuss it all.

TED – The Rapid Growth of The Chinese Internet & Where It’s Headed By Gary Liu

The Chinese internet has grown at a staggering pace — it now has more users than the combined populations of the US, UK, Russia, Germany, France and Canada. Even with its imperfections, the lives of once-forgotten populations have been irrevocably elevated because of it, says South China Morning Post CEO Gary Liu. In a fascinating talk, Liu details how the tech industry in China has developed — from the innovative, like AI-optimized train travel, to the dystopian, like a social credit rating that both rewards and restricts citizens…..

 

 

 

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Wi-Fi 6 Is Coming Here’s Why You Should Care – David Nield

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Get ready for the next generation of wifi technology: Wi-fi 6 (for so it is named) is going to be appearing on devices from next year. But will you have to throw out your old router and get a new one? And is this going to make your Netflix run faster? Here’s everything you need to know about the new standard. Those of you of a certain age will remember when home internet access was very much wired—only one computer could get online, a single MP3 took half an hour to download, and you couldn’t use the landline phone at the same time…….

Read more: https://gizmodo.com/wi-fi-6-is-coming-and-heres-why-you-should-care-1829516258

 

 

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