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Tim Berners-Lee, Father of The Internet Meets a Robot Edward Snowden and Calls Him a Hero

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Tim Berners-Lee, Father of The Internet, Meets a Robot Edward Snowden, and Calls Him a Hero


The NSA thought that they could shut Edward Snowden up.

Not with the help of TED organizer Chris Anderson and the father of the internet, Tim Berners-Lee.

For those who may not know them, Chris Anderson, as described in Wikipedia is ?an American author and entrepreneur. He was with?The Economist?for seven years, then joining?WIRED?magazine in 2001 where he was the editor-in-chief until 2012. He is known for his 2004 article entitled?The Long Tail; which he later expanded into the 2006 book,?The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More. He is currently the cofounder and CEO of 3DRobotics, a drone manufacturing company.?

Time Berners-Lee really needs no introduction, as his title of being the creator of the internet pretty much says it all. Wikipedia, however adds to his ?mystique? by introducing him as ?Sir Timothy John “Tim” Berners-Lee, OM, KBE, FRS, FREng, FRSA, DFBCS, also known as “TimBL”, is a British computer scientist, best known as the inventor of the World Wide Web.?

With the help of these two ?tech icons?, Snowden appeared before a TED conference sharing with the excited crowd the news, that he will be revealing more information from the massive cache he has from the USA National Security Agency.

So how come he was not arrested on the spot by a team of NSA ?Black Ops? agents?

Snowden wasn’t actually on the TED stage. He appeared via a ?chatbot? that he controlled from an unspecified top secret location.

Via this robotic contraption, Snowden shared that more revelations and stories about the US intelligence / spy agency will be forthcoming very soon. He said that ? I don?t think there?s any question that some of the most important reporting to be done is yet to come.?

Anderson organized the event, veering away from the usual single-speaker 18 minute talk that TED is known for and instead arranged a conversation between Berners-Lee and Snowden.

Anderson said that Snowden and Berners-Lee seem to share common beliefs and principles which led to the idea of bringing them together on the TED stage. He recalled that Berners-Lee recently used the world wide web’s 25th Anniversary to campaign for an ?internet bill of rights?. Anderson felt that people who thought the same about Berners-Lee and Snowden would be able to confirm this, by seeing them both on stage, talking to each other.

In the ?conversation?, Snowden appeared relaxed and light humored as he appealed to technology companies to apply SSL encryption as a default web browsing system. He said that ?To people who have seen and enjoyed the free and open internet, it?s up to us to preserve that liberty for the next generation to enjoy.?

When Anderson asked Berners-Lee if Snowden was a traitor, or does he consider him a hero, Berners-Lee replied saying ?hero, if you have to make the choice between the two.?

Snowden added that ?I believe a magna carta for the internet is exactly what we needWe need to encode our values not just in writing but in the structure of the internet.?

Berners-Lee reiterated his call for internet rights and asked Snowden about his thoughts to make a ?better internet?. Snowden replied by saying that ? When we think about it in terms of how far we can go, I think that?s a question that?s limited only by what we?re willing to do….I think the internet that we?ve enjoyed in the past has been exactly what we, not just as a nation but as a people around the world, need….If the web?s technologists can truly enlist the web?s casual users as allies, we?ll get not just the internet we?ve had, but a better internet.?

The appearance of Berners-Lee and Snowden ended with Anderson placing a TED badge on the chatbot and inviting Snowden to hang around the conference for the rest of the week. Snowden’s chatbot was then rolled off the stage, in the presence of his lawyer, of course.

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