web archive

Web Archive – Time travel tool for Internet

web archive

Ever wondered how Google homepage looked like a decade ago? Do you want to see how your own website looked like a few years back? Or maybe you want to check which article was featured on Wikipedia 129 days ago!

Go back in time…

We often hear those senior web designers saying – “those were the days when implementing so and so feature took me 10 days..” or “I remember the time when the design team suggested a burgundy background color for the website..”. Well, now you need not be satisfied on their say alone.

The internet has a time machine – The Web Archive. Use it to travel back in time and have a look at your favorite websites in their early days.

Here is how Google looked like on 2nd Dec 1998 :

web archive - google 1998

How do I use the web archive?

1. Go to the web archive website.

2. Type in the website address in the text box provided. Click on “Take Me Back” button. Here I have entered “microsoft.com“.

web archive homepage

3. The webpage you see now gives the details of archives taken of the website you typed in the previous step. At the top it gives the statistics of the number of times snapshots of the webpage is taken.

It shows the years of which snapshots are available for you to see. Click on any year to access the archives. Here I have chosen the year 1999.

web archive microsoft

In the calendar, the days circled in blue can be clicked to access the archive on that particular day. Here I have chosen 03rd Feb 1999. This is how the official microsoft website looked on that day:

web archive microsoft 1999


That’s it! Follow the same steps for any other website you wish to playback!

If you are wondering who keeps a tab of such a huge library of data, its the Internet Archive group. According to them, about 10 petabytes of data has been archived till now! Now that is HUGE!

You can also check out where all this data is stored in the awesome video given below. It covers the interview of Brewster Kahle, founder of the Internet Archive. It especially offers a look at not just the idea behind the archive, but the actual servers that hold the 10 petabytes of archived websites, books, movies, music, and television broadcasts that the Internet Archive currently stores.

Cool isn’t it? So which website archives would you like to see? Do let us know in the comments.

Image Credit : bloggingcage

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