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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Archiving the Internet and Searching it with the Wayback Machine

Many people think that everything that is on the net stays there.  That is not entirely true, though it is a good idea to operate as though that is the case.  A system called the Internet Archive is an attempt to archive large parts of it, so they will always be available.  Though the choice of what to archive is still partly selective and partly random.   In the January 26 New Yorker, an excellent article: The Cobweb: Can the Internet be Archived?, about what is called the WayBack Machine, and the idea of internet persistence.  Have used that capability to support some things I have written on historical topics.  It has allowed me to do things that would have been impossible otherwise.    Once you have read the New Yorker article, you can visit the Internet Archive Wayback Machine here.  It has saved 452 billion web pages over time, to date.  Check out what your internet presence is now, and what it was then.

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