Old Dominion University Libraries

STARquest II: The Internet and the World Wide Web

1c. What is the World Wide Web?

The World Wide Web, sometimes abbreviated as WWW, W3, or the Web, is one of the most exciting parts of the Internet. It provides hypertext access to documents from anywhere on the Internet. The advantage of hypertext is that you can select a highlighted word (link) within a document and then be taken automatically to a new document somewhere else on the Web.

You can access the Web through a browser. A browser can

  • Read documents
  • Access pictures and sound
  • Fetch documents
  • Access files by FTP (File Transfer Protocol)
  • Access USENET newsgroups
  • Lead you to remote sites

Browsers such as Microsoft Internet Explorer use a point-and-click method on a highlighted link as a way to access a Web page.