A Brief Overview of the Early Web

Search engines are such an integral part of everyday life that it’s hard to remember a time before they were
so essential. But it hasn’t always been that way: in the past, search engine results were often filled with irrelevant content, spam, and other kinds of malicious material. Results were also influenced heavily by
marketers with big budgets.

Before you begin your journey to becoming a search engine optimization expert, it’s a good idea to take a
look back at some of the key developments in the industry and understand how they helped shape the way
in which search engines work today.

After Tim Berners-Lee invented what we know today as the World Wide Web using hypertext markup
language (or HTML) in 1991, the very first online robot—the World Wide Web Wanderer—was launched
in June 1993. Its initial task was to measure the growth of the Internet, where it actively counted the number
of servers connected to the Web. The role of this first robot was quickly expanded to capture actual URLs,
and the database it constructed was known as Wandex.

The very first service resembling what would today be called a search engine—named the Repository-Based
Software Engineering (RBSE) spider—was launched in late 1993. This was the first site that allowed users
to search by relevance for content it had indexed while crawling the Internet.

Then, in 1994, a name that’s likely to be more familiar to you entered the landscape, when David Filo and
Jerry Yang created the Yahoo Directory. In the beginning, Yahoo was just a collection of Jerry and David’s
favorite links; as the list grew, they added functionality that allowed users to search the database of sites.

Source:  SEO Business Guide.


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