Network Theory| The Ever Evolving Web: The Power of Networks

Wendy Hall


In this paper we consider the Web as a network of networks and reflect on its evolution, firstly by analyzing the reasons why it became the first truly ubiquitous hypertext system against all competitors and secondly by looking at how it has evolved from a network of linked documents to a system that facilitates social networking on a scale previously unimaginable and how it will evolve in the future as a network of linked data and beyond. The study of the Web—its evolution and its impact on society, on business and on government—is referred to as Web Science. We consider some of the major challenges of Web Science and discuss possible Web worlds of the future.

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