The Hyperlink Delusion
A personal statement to upgrade the Web.
The Internet is not the same as the Web.

It is very common to use the terms of the Internet and the Web as synonyms without caring too much about the differences or the exact meaning. Depending on the context it’s not a big deal, but because with this text I want you to pay attention particularly to one of them, the Web, I am going to go over the main differences really fast to be sure we are in the same page before we explore the topic further [1][2].

  • The Internet is infrastructure, more specifically, information infrastructure. The Web is a system running on top of this infrastructure [3][4], like the email, for example.

  • We use the Internet with the objective to improve communication between humans and we use the Web as a non-physical place where we actually meet to communicate and coordinate with others [5].

  • The Internet links physical devices worldwide, the Web connects pieces of information with other pieces of information.

“Not to be confused with the World Wide Web.” Message on top of the Wikipedia entry for the Internet.
Internet - Wikipedia
“Not to be confused with the Internet.” Message on top of the Wikipedia entry for the Web.
World Wide Web - Wikipedia
“Although the Internet and the Web are often used as synonyms they are not the same thing. The Internet is the infrastructure of the network while the web sits on top of this and is essentially a way to access information via the Internet.” (01:14)
The Secrets Behind how the Internet Works - YouTube
More on the physical infrastructure of the Internet.
Andrew Blum: Discover the physical side of the internet | TED Talk
“We live in an age where it’s easier than ever to join a scenius. The Internet is basically a bunch of sceniuses connected together, divorced from physical geography. Blogs, social media sites, email groups, discussion boards, forums—they’re all the same thing: virtual scenes where people go to hang out and talk about the things they care about.” From the book “Show your work”, by Austin Kleon.