User-Generated Content in Education/The Internet Archive

History edit

Brewster Kahle, founder of Alexa Internet and The Internet Archive[1]

The Internet Archive[2] was created by Brewster Kahle in 1996. It was originally created as a nonprofit organization to store digital webpages and their graphics. The archive was essentially a digital library of current and past webpages. In 2001, the archive became part of the public domain. Today it is considered to be the world's largest database.[3]

Kahle also founded Alexa Internet, which created the Alexa crawler used to retrieve data for The Internet Archive. The crawler scans the internet every few months taking snapshots of webpages and storing them in The Internet Archive. Public users may then access copies of the webpages by going to the archive webpage, then entering the webpage's url into the Way Back Machine search engine.[4] Today The Internet Archive has expanded in various directions to make available a wide variety of digital resources. The creation of the Open Library and NASA Images through The Internet Archive are just two of Internet Archive's projects that provide the public with free, easily accessible digitized information.

The Wayback Machine edit

The Wayback Machine[5] is an archive of web pages. It was created in 1996 by Brewster Kahle, founder of Alexa Internet and The Internet Archive. The Wayback Machine allows users to search for nearly any webpage and view the pages from past dates. Any webpage that Alexa Internet is aware of will appear here. The webpages are archived at various dates and intervals. While there are some pages that cannot be viewed due to various technological reasons, there are millions of sites available for the user to peruse. According to The Wayback Machine Frequently Asked Questions Page[6], The Wayback Machine currently consists of nearly 2 petabytes (or 2,097,152 gigabytes[7] to put it into perspective) and continues to grow.

Why might one find The Wayback Machine useful? The Wayback Machine could be used to view and analyze past versions of one's personal website, to find information on a potential employee, to find instruction manuals on now obsolete technology, even possibly for legal matters. One could also just explore the past.

NASA and The Internet Archive Partnership edit

In 2007 The internet Archive signed a partnership agreement with NASA to create an interactive web site consisting of NASA images. The entire project is to be completed over a 5 year time span. NASA developed the website so their images, audio, and video film clips could be available to the public and located in one web site. Prior to the development of this site, NASA images were stored in 21 different locations. Another purpose of the web site is that the digitizing of photos will ensure availability of NASA images for many years to come, as several photos from the early 1900's are beginning to deteriorate. The first phase of the site, NASA Images[8], was launched in July 2008. At that time, the site consisted of over 140,000 images, video, and audio clips extending from early Apollo missions to images of the solar system from the Hubble Telescope. Future goals of the partnership is to embed interactive Web 2.0 tools within the site. There is currently a blog on the site and developers are working on embedding both wikis and blogs to allow user shared content. The partnership plans to digitize still photos, film, film negatives, and audio that had been previously stored on analog devices.[9]

In education, science teachers and students alike can utilize the NASA Images website because it provides free access to the public through the partnership with The Internet Archive. No login or payment is required to access the site. Teachers can use the images or videos to enhance instruction in the classroom. Students may use images to further their studies, as a tool to share their input or ask questions through the blogs and wikis, or as a resource in development and/or understanding of assignments.

Open Library edit

Open Library[10] was also created by The Internet Archive and makes nearly 2 million books available online for free. Their goal is to "provide a page on the web for every book ever published."[11] To make as many books available to its users, The Open Library has partnered with Overdrive[12], adding an additional 70,000 electronic titles to those who belong to one of the 11,000 libraries who subscribe to Overdrive[13]. Should you not be able to access your book for free at The Open Library, as some are not yet available in digital format, The Open Library will provide links to allow you to borrow the physical copy or to buy the book online. The Open Library is a work-in-progress and continues to try to obtain as many digital versions of books as possible.

A recent addition to the services Open Library provides is the lending of e-books. It is possible for an account holder to borrow up to five titles for two weeks. These books can be viewed on any browser, as a PDF or using ePub. In order to use the lending library, one must register their library and send one book, published between 1923 and 2000, non-rights cleared. When the book is received, the lending option is made available. On the Lending Library page, the user will find title covers of many of the books available for checkout. A book icon with or without a red line through it indicates the availability status of the book. As of 2012, there are 10,248 works available in the Lending Library. Also on the Lending Library page, a viewer will find a chart that gives the number of editions in the library for each year. The majority of these titles have 20th Century publication dates. Open Library

For further explanation ... edit

Brewster Kahle: A Digital Library, Free to the World (TED Talk):[14]

The LINK: Internet Wayback Machine:[15]

Free E-Book Lending from Open Library: [16]

How to Find NASA Images and Videos: [17]

References edit

  1. Brewster Kahle
  2. The Internet Archive Site
  3. Panos, P. (2003, Spring). The Internet Archive: An End to the Digital Dark Age. Journal of Social Work Education, 39(2), 343-347.
  4. Panos, P. (2003, Spring). The Internet Archive: An End to the Digital Dark Age. Journal of Social Work Education, 39(2), 343-347.
  5. The Wayback Machine Site
  6. The Wayback Macine FAQ Page
  7. What is a Petabyte?
  8. NASA Images Site
  9. NASA Launches Online Historical Image Gallery
  10. The Open Library
  11. The Open Library FAQ Page
  12. Overdrive
  13. Open Library FAQs on Borrowing
  14. Brewster Kahle:A Digital Library Free to the World
  15. The LINK: Internet Wayback Machine
  16. Free E-Book Lending from Open Library
  17. How to Find NASA Images and Video