Internet has only just begun, say founders

While the Internet has dramatically changed lives around the world, its full impact will only be realised when far more people and information go on-line, its founders said Wednesday. “The Web as I envisaged it, we have not seen it yet. The future is still so much bigger than the past,” said Tim Berners-Lee, one of the inventors of the World Wide Web, at a seminar on its future.

Just 23 percent of the globe’s population currently uses the Internet, according to the United Nation’s International Telecommunications Union, with use much higher in developed nations.

The Internet has a long way to go. Listening in on the Future of Social Networks panel, this became apparent to me. A few years ago, my life online went un-noticed. Today – that’s a different story.  Now your online identity is your offline identity.  Transperancy is becoming the norm. If you are plugged into Facebook, you know the truths to this. I know what my friend’s kids from elementary school look like (had a run in with a old friend at a restaurant and recognized her by her kids last week!).  If you were to ask my sister what I did today, she could pick up her phone and tell you. I can tell you about my brother’s vacation before he even returns home. 

What does the future hold? Who knows.  But I can’t wait for the ride.

Here is the The Future of Social Networks panel from this year’s SXSWi. Charlene Li did a fabulous job visioning what could be.