From ‘World Wide Web’ To ‘World Wide Streams’

World Wide Streams

The World Wide Web is an amazing platform that has had tremendous impact on our lives. It allows anybody in the world to publish content – text, photos, and videos – that can, in turn, be accessed by anybody in the world. And anybody in the world can mesh-up the content offered on the Web to create very cool and valuable services and meta-content. The Web has been such a game changer because it has enabled this global information ecosystem.

But the Web does all this for what we call “batched content” – photos, documents, pre-recorded videos. Batched content is created, then stored somewhere, indexed, and made available for others to access at later points.

In the new world, what we call “streaming content” is becoming more and more interesting and relevant. Streaming content is data that is generated and consumed continuously. Think of measurements from sensors and IoT devices. Think of live video streams.

Such content is most valuable when it is created and it can lose value quickly. For example, data from car sensors/cameras and traffic monitoring sensors/cameras are constantly being generated. If processed fast enough, i.e. within milliseconds, they can potentially help avoid deadly accidents. But two seconds after it has been created the content is almost useless – because the two cars approaching the intersection at high speed have already crashed.

So we need something like the World Wide Web – but for real-time content streams. We need a solution that allows anybody to publish content streams, then allows others to instantaneously find relevant streams (Google search for streams), then allows people to easily and quickly mesh streams of different types together and easily create new interesting services.

The Nokia Bell Labs World Wide Streams platform is designed to be the world’s first global-scale hub for sharing, transforming, and publishing live data streams. The platform can ingest, process, combine, and deliver large numbers of data and media streams in real-time between geographically distributed sources and sinks. World Wide Streams will be integral as 5G takes hold and an ever-increasing amount of streaming content is produced.

For a deeper understanding of World Wide Stream, including its architecture and value proposition, I invite you to learn more and give the platform a spin at my team’s Web site at

This article was published by Markus Hofmann.