"The Web In An Eye Blink": A filmmaker, historian, and self-proclaimed rogue archivist, Jason Scott discusses his personal history of preserving the digital commons which began with rescuing his favorite BBS-era "text files" and continued with saving gigabytes of the first user-created homepages (i.e. GeoCities.com) which were about to be trashed by their corporate owner. Today his mission, in his role at the Internet Archive, is to save all the computer games and make them playable again inside modern web browsers. And that’s where things get really weird.
Tagged with “internet archive” (15)
On this episode of Recode Decode, hosted by Kara Swisher, entrepreneur, activist and founder of the Internet Archive Brewster Kahle discussed the growth of the open internet and the importance of having a history of the internet available to everyone.
The Internet Archive’s historical search engine, the "Wayback Machine," grows by half a billion pages a week.
Where to find what’s disappeared online, and a whole lot more: the Internet Archive | Public Radio International
The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine is much beloved by investigative reporters and others, looking to find out what a webpage looked like at some point in the past, even if it’s since disappeared. But the Internet Archive’s work is much more ambitious than that. Founder Brewster Kahle says through scanning books and recording video feeds around the world, it aims to make all human knowledge universally available on a decentralized Web, and illiberal impulses among leaders in America and elsewhere are only "putting a fire under our butts" to do the work, swiftly and effectively.
The internet is so ingrained in our daily lives, that it can be hard to remember life before it. And it changes so quickly it’s equally hard to know what the future might hold. One thing that’s clear is that more and more people will be connected and doing more and different things with this technology.
It’s a bit tricky to pinpoint when the internet began. Was it the first email? The first public network? What we do know is exactly when we started keeping a record of what’s on the web - October 26, 1996.
That’s the day Brewster Kahle launched Internet Archive. A computer engineer, internet activist, and digital librarian, Kahle draws inspiration from the Library of Congress and – further back – the great Library of Alexandria. Universal access to all knowledge is his ideal.
As early as 1980, the idea that internet technology could make that possible was floating around the computer science community. As technology improved, the idea grew. By 1996, Kahle could archive every page from every website every two months.
“It was kind of like what the search engines were doing,” he told WCAI. “Take a snapshot, and another snapshot, and another snapshot, and another snapshot, and we’ve been doing that for 20 years.”
Twenty years of the web is a lot of data. The archive is currently 265 billion pages. Internet Archive also includes music, digitized books, and just about anything Kahle can legally get his hands on.
“Whoever is going to be president in 20 years, we probably have her website [from] when she’s in high school,” he said.
That may seem unnecessary, even unwelcome, to some. Kahle concedes there is plenty on the web that isn’t intended for posterity, and Internet Archive respects requests to have content removed. But he sees value in preserving web content that might be lost inadvertently.
“Even though we use this metaphor of ‘page,’ which sounds like books, which sounds like permanent, it really isn’t,” he said. “The average life of a web page is only 100 days.”
In the Internet Archive, those ephemeral pages become part of a permanent record of our collective internet experience. Browsing the Internet Archive, one lesson is immediately apparent – that experience has changed a lot in twenty years.
What’s online doesn’t necessarily last forever. Content on the Internet is revised and deleted all the time. Hyperlinks “rot,” and with them goes history, lost in space. With that in mind, Brewster Kahle set out to develop the Internet Archive, a digital library with the mission of preserving all the information on the World Wide Web, for all who wish to explore. Jeffrey Brown reports.
Keynote: Cory Doctorow: How Stupid Laws and Benevolent Dictators can Ruin the Decentralized Web, too
Cory Doctorow, is an author, journalist, and Special Advisor at the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
In this keynote, Cory explains how the people who founded the web with the idea of having an open, decentralized system ended up building a system that is increasingly monopolized by a few companies — and how we can prevent the same things from happening next time.
Brewster Kahle is the founder and Digital Librarian of the Internet Archive, as well as a member of the Internet Hall of Fame.
The current Web is not private or censorship-free. It lacks a memory, a way to preserve our culture’s digital record through time. The Decentralized Web aims to make the Web open, secure and free of censorship by distributing data, processing, and hosting across millions of computers around the world, with no centralized control.
Panel: As we build a Decentralized Web, what values do we want written in the code? Moderator: Amber Case
It’s easy as engineers to concentrate on the code and not on those we are building for. What are the values we should be trying to embed in the code? What are the principles we can agree upon about the way this Web should be governed? We hear from the perspectives of an archivist, an engineer, a researcher and an official of the W3C – to see if there is an alignment around values and the ways to express them through technology.
Participants: Primavera De Filippi Max Ogden Wendy Seltzer Peter Van Garderen
Vinton Gray "Vint" Cerf is an Internet pioneer, who is recognized as one of "the fathers of the Internet” for his co-invention of TCP/IP. His contributions have been acknowledged and lauded, repeatedly, with honorary degrees and awards that include the National Medal of Technology, the Turing Award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Marconi Prize, and membership in the National Academy of Engineering. Cerf has worked for Google as a Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist since October 2005.
Vint Cerf’s keynote – "A Web that Archives Itself."
"The Internet Archive has started the process of preserving the WWW but there is an opportunity to refine the design of WWW to create a self-archiving, distributed system. I hope to explore some of the desirable properties of such a self-archiving system from the technical perspective but feel compelled to consider business models that make the process sustainable and affordable. This is clearly more than just a technical problem."
The average lifespan of a web page is 100 days. In an era of thousands of quickly changing websites, blog posts, and tweets, how can we archive the web and all other digital content? Digital librarian Brewster Kahle and historian Abby Smith Rumsey discuss what it takes to save old websites—and the entire Internet—and what society might lose if we don’t.
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