“Wayback Machine” is Your Portal to the Internet’s Dark Past
The internet’s past is riddled with bad GIFs and horrible, brightly colored layouts and Comic Sans fonts, but thanks to its constantly changing nature, it has been, for the most part, buried. If, however, you’re one of the brave souls willing to trudge through the darkness and dig into its depths, check out the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.
This project has been archiving internet pages since 1996, cataloguing more than 240 billion pages for your viewing pleasure. Most websites that had any reasonable number of views can be explored in their past forms, often with some broken images and links, at various times in the website’s life. Google, for example, has over 20,000 viewable snapshots spread over nearly fifteen years.
For many, the Wayback Machine will be like a trip down memory lane, to the internet’s otherwise lost and forgotten past. And despite the cringe-worthy website design of the ’90s and early 2000s, it’s a pretty cool trip.