In 1989 (a long, long time ago in digital terms), Tim Berners-Lee, a software engineer at CERN, wrote a paper that would revolutionize our world.
The Internet existed already: there were hundreds of computers linked together, in government and universities. The ARPANET even saw the first email in 1972. Initially, those were closed networks, for and by communities of researchers, the dept of defense, etc. By 1985, the Internet was well established, when in 1989 Tim Berners-Lee set out to create the World Wide Web, as a history of CERN explains:
The document described a “hypertext project” called “WorldWideWeb” in which a “web” of “hypertext documents” could be viewed by “browsers”.
At first, the world-wide web was a world of information, that would eventually bear the name Web 1.0.
In 1994, we didn’t really know what it was all about.