June 06, 2011, 6:27 AM — The inventors of the World Wide Web and the Internet sprung their ideas on the public more than two decades ago - and the accolades haven't stopped since.
Tim Berners-Lee, who wrote the first Web client and server in 1990, is now one of the most decorated individuals in the high-tech field. And while the MIT professor and director of the World Wide Web Consortium hasn't gone the corporate route like Netscape co-founder Marc Andreeseen and other Web entrepreneurs, his accomplishments have not gone unrewarded monetarily either.
Not only was he been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2004 for "services to the global development of the Internet," but Sir Timothy has piled up these honors: Electronic Frontier Foundation Pioneer Award (2000), Marconi Prize (2002), Japan Prize (2002), Computer History Museum Hall of Fellows (2003), Finland's Millennium Technology Prize (2004) and National Academy of Engineering Draper Prize (2007).
The cash prizes associated with some of those awards add up: Roughly $100,000 for the Marconi, $600,000 for the Japan Prize, $500,000 for the Draper and about $1 million for the Millennium Technology Prize. A lot of money for a guy whose creation has led to a bunch of free Web browsers.
Next up for Berners-Lee: A Nobel Peace Prize? Word is that he and Internet pioneers Vinton Cerf and Robert Kahn are among those nominated this year. (See: "Why there's no Nobel Prize in Computing")
Speaking of Cerf and Kahn, they haven't been slighted on the award front. Their development of Internet underpinnings TCP and IP in the 1970s has been recognized over and over and over in the years since.
2011 TIMELINE: The year in technology awards