Elsewhere: Wayback When

Trying to find some of my earliest work on the internet was an interesting lesson in how we have failed to archive the internet but I did find some references to some early emails I wrote.

Two years ago today I left my colleagues at Satellite Media Services in Lawford Heath, Warwickshire and moved on to IPC where I can be found looking after advertising systems for ybw.com. I left copies of my original web presence on SMS’ servers but sadly they no longer exist. For a side project, I have been trying to determine when I first started building web sites. The Wayback Machine only appears to have an archived version of the SMS site from 1997 but, unfortunately, I don’t appear to have the earlier versions. Wayback does have a copy of the original Independent Radio News site we launched in 1997 but not of the original news audio we were serving for several years before that. If I am not mistaken it was the first real-time news audio service in the UK. Thanks to Deja News (now Google Groups) I can find references to the UK Radio Mailing List that we at SMS took over running in 1996 and one reference to a 1995 request for information about an indirect access service called 1602. It’s a shame those original sites are not archived somewhere. I guess this is a lesson in the transient nature of the web. We need to remember how easily digital history can be erased.

  • Update September 2002: Deja News links updated to Google
  • Update August 2003: Links updated
  • Update June 2009: ex-sms.com link added