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Life Online gallery gives the internet's origins the museum treatment

The UK's National Media Museum in Bradford is unveiling its new Life Online Gallery this week. The gallery will examine the history of the internet, its impact, and current developments and trends.

life online logo
life online logo

When you consider how amazing the internet is, it's a little surprising that its beginnings don't get the same kind of exposure as the moon landing or the invention of the telephone. Britain's National Media Museum in Bradford wants to change that on Friday, with the opening of a new permanent gallery dedicated to preserving the history of the internet. Named Life Online, the gallery will chart the history of the web, look at the impact it's had on its users, and exhibit the latest online developments and trends. In addition to the permanent gallery, there is also a rotating temporary exhibit, the first of which is titled Open Source and looks at sharing and collaboration online, as well as current threats to net neutrality.

The £2 million (about $3.1 million) project has some impressive exhibits, including everything from a live portrait of Tim Berners-Lee (the inventor of the World Wide Web) made up of a grid of feeds from live cams, to video installations and a game that lets players try to become a dotcom billionaire. If you can't make it to Bradford for the opening festivities, no need to worry — videos from the gallery (including Vint Cerf's re-telling of the birth of the internet, below) are available at the National Media Museum's YouTube page.