Agence France-PresseJuly 1, 2021 11:26:39 AMT
Tim Berners-Lee’s source code was sold to the WWW on Wednesday for $ 5.4 million as a non-exchangeable token (NFT).
New York’s Sotheby’s staged a week-long sale that paved the way for the current Internet more than 30 years after its creation.
One included an animated version of Berners-Lee’s nearly 10,000 line lines and a letter from a British-born computer scientist.
#AuctionUpdate One of the most historically significant digital objects ever sold, the network source code NFT has brought in $ 5.4 million. Sir Tim Berners-Lee provides revenue to capitalize on initiatives supported by Sir Tim and Lady Berners-Lee.#ThisChangedEverything
– Sotheby’s (@Sothebys) June 30, 2021
“Ten years ago, we couldn’t have done that,” said Cassandra Hatton, vice president of Sotheby’s, referring to the recent rise of the NFT.
Hatton said this work is unique because it is relevant to the creation of the Internet.
“It changed every part of your life,” Hatton said. “We don’t even fully understand the impact it has on our lives and the impact we still have on our lives.”
In 1989, Berners-Lee, a physicist-computer scientist, described an information-sharing system that would allow researchers to access information from anywhere in the world.
At the time, he was an employee of the CERN information center in Geneva – originally the European Council for Nuclear Research, now the European Organization for Nuclear Research. He named the new network the World Wide Web (WWW).
In 1990 and 1991, he wrote a program that created the first Internet browser and laid the practical foundation for the current Internet.
In the process, he also came up with a URL – an Internet address, HTTP – that allows users to find the site, and HTML – a standard coding language for creating websites.
Berners-Lee, who has decided to make the web an open space, did not patent the program, but left it freely available to everyone, which promoted its spread.
Just over three decades after the invention, Berners-Lee presented the original program files for sale as a collection item. At the end of the auction, he will receive a portion of the capital gain, but he plans to donate all of his proceeds to charity.
An NFT is a digital object, such as a drawing, animation, piece of music, photograph, or video, that has a certificate of authenticity created by the blockchain technology that underlies the cryptographic currency. It cannot be falsified or otherwise manipulated.
NFTs currently generate several hundred million dollars in transactions per month.
NFT exchanges take place in cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, on specialized sites, but traditional auction houses seek to take advantage of the phenomenon.