You probably have figured out by now that I have rediscovered my minidisc collection. In the past week I have been searching the net trying to find out various things about minidiscs which has been a bit hard as their hay days were quite a few years ago but what I am finding increasingly is lots of broken links. I’ll find links to message boards that no longer exist or broken images that point to a defunct image sharing site.
I find this really sad. There were probably thousands of conversations, images, and such that are now gone forever. What I discovered this week is that the Internet is very fragile. One missed domain or web hosting payment and everything can be lost. I found references to many sites that were hailed as the best minidiscs sites out there that are now gone and their domains are now pointed to sad, cheesy, landing pages for some sketchy domain company.
I wish there was some way to preserve these sites. I know there are projects like archive.org and such but I wish there was something I could do. It has been said that we create something like five exabytes of data everyday but I wonder how much data is lost on a daily basis.
This also reminds me of Gowalla. Last year I was able to attend WordCamp San Francisco (bummed I won’t be going this year ) and I was having too much fun to stop and take pictures or anything so my only real record of the trip were my Gowalla check ins. However, when Gowalla shut down I lost all those check ins and was unable to move them somewhere else. While this loss isn’t catastrophic I still would have liked to have them to remember my first trip to San Francisco.
This is one reason why I am trying to make my WordPress.com blog my digital hub. I am trying to feed everything from the other sites I use into my WordPress.com blog and then disseminate it from there as I like knowing that all my data is safe and secure in one place, that I can export and save if it looks like the service is going under (which I don’t think will be problem with WP.com).
Anyway this post serves really no purpose except for me to mourn the loss of years of minidisc info but hopefully somebody will come up with a solution for preserving the internet in the future and hopefully I can be a part of it.