What is W3C?

Posted by admin at April 10, 2020

w3c large - What is W3C?

As steward of global Web standards, W3C’s mission is to safeguard the openness, accessibility, and freedom of the World Wide Web from a technical perspective.

W3C’s primary activity is to develop protocols and guidelines that ensure long-term growth for the Web. This includes the development and maintenance of CSS. The widely adopted Web standards define key parts of what actually makes the World Wide Web work.

A few history bits

sirTBL2 - What is W3C?

Tim Berners-Lee at his desk in CERN, 1994

Tim Berners-Lee wrote a proposal in 1989 for a system called the World Wide Web. He then created the first Web browser, server, and Web page. He wrote the first specifications for URLs, HTTP, and HTML.

In October 1994, Tim Berners-Lee founded the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Laboratory for Computer Science [MIT/LCS] in collaboration with CERN, where the Web originated (see information on the original CERN Server), with support from DARPA and the European Commission.

In April 1995, Inria became the first European W3C host, followed by Keio University of Japan (Shonan Fujisawa Campus) in Asia in 1996. In 2003, ERCIM took over the role of European W3C Host from Inria. In 2013, W3C announced Beihang University as the fourth Host.

In addition to these four Host locations that employ W3C staff, there are W3C Offices around the globe that support the developer communities in their regions and organize local events. Find the one next to your place!

A few figures

As of September 2017, W3C is:

  • member-driven organization composed of over 460 companies, universities, start-ups, etc. from all over the world.
  • 42 technicals groups, including Working, and Interest Groups where technical specifications are discussed and developed.
  • Over 5980 published technical reports, including 385 Web standards (or W3C Recommendations) – since January 1st ,1995.
  • About 291 Community and Business Groups, where developers, designers, and anyone passionate about the Web have a place to hold discussions and publish ideas.
  • Near 10785 active participants constituting the W3C community.
  • technical staff composed of about 67 people, spread on all five continents.


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