The Wayback Machine (Archive.org) is a fantastic site that serves a purpose like none other; it allows you to go back in time much like the name suggests and visit old versions of websites or specific webpages. This is extremely helpful if someone has made changes and you are unaware, there has been several times where it has helped me diagnose ranking drops or other site issue and it’s always there in your time of need.
Back to the actual topic at hand however, the website hasn’t been updated in what seems like an eternity and although it works it is slow and out of date. That’s all about to change though, due to the funding of the lovely Laura and John Arnold foundation there is going to be a complete rebuild of the back end code-base for the tool. There also will supposedly be the addition of a basic keyword search where you can find specific sites by simply searching a keyword, although I’m not entirely sure how this will work.
The revamp will also see them optimise further as to how deep they crawl the web and really drill down the quality of the page. Typically the issue with it now is that if you aren’t a top ranking website like Wikipedia your logs on the internet archive are few and far between, but hopefully with this new funding that’s all about to be a thing of the past. Currently the site crawls about a billion pages a week but it’s expected to far exceed that after the modifications, and it’s also expected to be able to play back media rich content which it currently struggles with.
There will be no interface changes, or at least there hasn’t been any mentioned as yet, but the tool should provide an overall better experience for those wanting to use its services. I’m really happy they are finally getting to do this, it’s in need of the restoration as I’m sure many of you agree.