Rhizome wins grant for online archiving tool

Jan 04, 2016 11:01 pm
In 2014 The New York Times profiled the prototype of a tool that records various kinds of internet content. At the time it was called Colloq, and was aimed to be, “As close as possible, you’re going to get the experience of interacting with the actual site,” said Jon Ippolito, a professor of new media at the University of Maine who advised Rhizome, a non-profit arts group, in designing the project. “It is reconstructing it, bit by bit, in a technology that is very close to the original and allows users to explore it interactively the way they could with the original.” Now, Jan. 4, Rhizome was awarded a two-year, $600,000 grant to underwrite the development of what has become Webrecorder from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Webrecorder will save content from formats that may not linger on the internet. Remember Friendster or Myspace? Anything shared there ten years ago is lost currently in the Facebook world. "In 1999, Rhizome founded the ArtBase, a distinctive collection of technically diverse born-digital art. In 2009, recognizing the fragility of these system-dependent works, we created a digital preservation program to care for them.... we look forward to leading further innovation in the field of digital preservation through the Webrecorder project," said Zachary Kaplan, Rhizome’s Executive Director. An early version of Webrecorder is available at webrecorder.io.