One HUNDRED MILLion Web Sites (ah-ha)

Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox email came in and the “100 Million Websites” title caught my attention (as well as started me quoting Austin Powers / Dr. Evil lines in my head). Those who use the web always talk about the internet in terms of “large” and “vast” and that weird cloud image but probably never really think about what those words really mean when it comes to numbers. The article quotes “even if only half the sites are maintained, there are still more than 100 M sites that people pay to keep running” — that’s a lot of information out there… 101,435,253 million and growing to be exact.
Nielsen, one of the founders and advocates of web page usability (read his bio), further goes into a little bit of the history of web sites, the growth stages, web usability changes, and future predictions. Ultimately it’s just a teaser for an upcoming seminar on web usability but I thought this information was interesting in showing how many people currently use the internet and not just for searching.
So… 200 million by 2010? I agree with Nielsen, I think we’ll surpass that as more and more companies recognize the benefits of having a presence online (not to mention the personal sites, blogs, etc.).