Saturday, March 14, 2009

UNESCO and creation of CERN; CERN and the creation of the World Wide Web.

Aerial view of the CERN site just outside Geneva.Image © CERN.

The Creation of CERN

At the end of the Second World War, European science was no longer the crème de la crème. Following the example of the now mushrooming international organizations, a handful of visionary scientists imagined creating a European atomic physics laboratory. Raoul Dautry, Pierre Auger and Lew Kowarski in France, Edoardo Amaldi in Italy and Niels Bohr in Denmark were among these pioneers. Such a laboratory would not only unite European scientists but also allow them to share the increasing costs of nuclear physics facilities.
French physicist Louis de Broglie put the first official proposal for the creation of a European laboratory forward at the European Cultural Conference in Lausanne in December 1949. A further push came at the fifth UNESCO General Conference, held in Florence in June 1950, where the American Nobel laureate physicist, Isidor Rabi tabled a resolution authorizing UNESCO to "assist and encourage the formation of regional research laboratories in order to increase international scientific collaboration…" At an intergovernmental meeting of UNESCO in Paris in December 1951, the first resolution concerning the establishment of a European Council for Nuclear Research was adopted. Two months later, 11 countries signed an agreement establishing the provisional Council – the acronym CERN was born. At the provisional Council's third session in October 1952, Geneva was chosen as the site of the future Laboratory. This choice was finally ratified in a referendum organized by the Canton of Geneva in June 1953.
Read more about the history of CERN

The Creation of the World Wide Web

Twenty years ago this month, something happened at CERN that would change the world forever: Tim Berners-Lee handed a document to his supervisor Mike Sendall entitled "Information Management : a Proposal". "Vague, but exciting" is how Mike described it, and he gave Tim the nod to take his proposal forward. The following year, the World Wide Web was born.

Check out the following websites: