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The WWW's history at CUED


CUED's first WWW pages go back to the early days of the WWW. At least one group had a server running in 1993. Our first departmental home page appeared in March 1994. Since then much has changed regarding WWW usage at CUED. Some of the more significant milestones will be noted here, and snapshots of activity provided.

Development of Services

The department provides various types of support to web authors and users.

Development of Web Usage

Web usage has extended across nearly all areas of departmental activity, though progress has been slower in some areas than in others.


Central/distributed control

Both in terms of server management and page production the balance between central and devolved control has shifted. For many years, any user has been able to put material online without central intervention. There was a phase when researchers had the same freedom to run webservers, but now this is unpopular both with research groups and the computer group because of security issues. Instead, we now maintain a centralised server on which groups can set up sites.

As regards page production, there was some pump-priming but now all the teaching and research pages and many of the admin pages are looked after by non-computer-staff - many are looked after by secretaries rather than academics.

Internal/external viewpoints

Initially one page served as our home-page both for internal and external users. Now we have a main home page for outsiders looking in, and a local page aimed at internal users, but little of the information on the latter there has access restrictions.

A few pages (directories of personal information, exam results, research project details) are for internal use only. More commonly material (press-releases, etc) is aimed specifically at external users.

Access patterns

We have log summaries going back to 1996. Interpretation of them isn't straightforward - as other sites use caches and as our research groups leave the centralised services to run their own servers, the patterns of access alter. Also we're moving towards dynamic pages (using PHP or databases) which affects logs too. Here are some points
© Cambridge University Engineering Dept
Information provided by Tim Love (tpl)
Last updated: March 2006