BRIDGET WHELAN writer

Muse, News and Views

Safari Friday searching the web for writers and readers How to be part of Web History

blue eye

The Wayback Machine is an historical archive of preserved web pages going back to 1996 (which in internet terms must be The Dark Ages). Type in an URL and it is possible to become a surfing time traveller, viewing web pages from the past. And there are a lot of pages to see – over 240 billion at the last count.

For example, this website has been crawled 11 times, the first occasion in early September 2012, a few weeks after I set it up, and if you had a mad desire to look at some pages from six months ago you could. True, the search facilities at the bottom of the page would be an easier way of doing the same thing, but if this blog disappeared tonight those pages would still be preserved and accessible.

As well as masses of websites, there are also special archive collections covering September 11th, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, US Election of 2002, the transition between President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama 2008-9, web pioneers and the early days of the internet. A selection of UK archives are also available.

Not everything is archived. My old blog over on blogspot was only crawled once in its two years of existence,ironically after I had stopped using it.

If you have a blog or website check that it is listed. If it isn’t, it is because the Wayback Machine and other potential readers can’t find you.

Two ways of making yourself visible:-

1. Get websites to link to you – follow other blogs and comment on them. You could also offer reciprocal links – good for everyone.

2. Get your site listed in major directories, like dmoz.org. To add your site to the Open Directory, go to http://www.dmoz.org/, find the category your site should be listed in, and click the “Add URL” link at the top of the page.

If you want to keep your website personal you will find a detailed guide on The Wayback website that explains how you can ensure you remain invisible.

Click HERE to find out more

Safari = Swahili for long journey.I am on the look out for anything accessible from a keyboard that educates, entertains, intrigues, raises a smile. Anything that helps a reader get through the day or a writer the next draft. Let me know if you write a website that you’d like featured or discover something that really should be shared.

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