A library can be seen as a collection of information that reflects society as a whole. Historical text, popular fiction and periodicals all help create a picture of human beings, their past and their present. It wasn’t too long ago that a research project for school or a medical question meant a trip to the library. Today, the efficiency and accuracy of the Internet has replaced the library for many people. The Wayback Machine search engine was created to ensure that the Internet, much like the library of yesterday, presents a complete picture of not only who we are now but of who we were then.
Wayback Machine was developed in 1996. The small, non-for profit organization sought to create a digital archive. By working closely with organizations such as the Smithsonian and the Library of Congress, the founders of Wayback Machine are working diligently to create a complete digital record. Text, images, audio and websites are achieved.
The site has several goals. It seeks to protect our right to information and our right to remember. With hopes of establishing international Internet centers to preserve the heritage of countries around the world, they hope to do more than simply educate. Wayback Machine will trace our changes as well.
On of the major functions is the Wayback machine search engine. This feature preserves archived websites from as early as 1996. Users can search by website and date parameters to effectively revisit a website on a particular day in history. Achieved websites will allow us to track how the Internet has evolved and will have several other interesting effects. Dead links will be effectively ‘revived’ because even though the page was removed from a particular website, it will still be available via Wayback Machine. The information and data provided by the traffic is likely to allow us to better understand the way we communicate as well as how we use the Internet.
The Wayback Machine search engine will provide us with a unique window to the past. Any website that has been ‘crawled’ since 1996 can be included on the site. Webmasters may also manually add their site into the growing library. Currently, the site is host to more than 150 billion pages that have been achieved since 1996.
History is not just a set of dates and events. Instead it is a collection of images, texts, stories and life. The Internet allows us a never before seen chance to record all of this and more. With the Wayback Machine search engine, we can easily look back. As the project continues to grow and develop, the capabilities of the site will grow as well. More text will be available in digital form. Audio books, television shows, newspapers, images and more will be saved for our prosperity. Anyone who is interested in history, or would like to take a journey back in time should give this unique site a look.