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Chapter 1. The Web in a Nutshell

The first edition of this book was published in 1996, when the Web was young and its possibilities were endless. As we write this third edition, the Web has since matured, and many of its possibilities have long been realized. Although the excitement of those early days has tempered and the technology has for the most part stabilized, it remains an integral part of our everyday lives. Venture capitalists might have moved on to newer ways to make a killing, but the Web's importance has not diminished, and its technology remains both vital and vibrant.

In this chapter, we give the world's quickest introduction to web technology. This book is by impatient writers for impatient readers, so don't expect much history or analysis here, just a basic tour of how everything fits together.

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