Showing posts with label Outside Time. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Outside Time. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Time Begins, When Counting Begins?

Like Copernicus' heliocentric theory, Newton's law of gravitation, and Darwin's theory of evolution, non-Euclidean geometry has radically affected science, philosophy, and religion. It is fair to say that no more cataclysmic event has ever taken place in the history of all thought.Saccheri's Flaw while eliminating Euclid's "Flaw" The Evolution of Non-Euclidean Geometry
The basis of any experience has it's counter part in how we have established the lines to which we place all experiencing on? You cannot count backward to zero(what is before zero...ummmmmm nothing), so what takes zero's place? It would be like asking what existed before this universe, so fundamentally they looked at issues around the false vacuum to the true. But cosmologically they call this universe "a box," and anything outside of it not fundamental?

Time has no independent existence apart from the order of events by which we measure it.Albert Einstein

When does counting begin? Discover Patterns.  Fibonacci Numbers perhaps? How does that apply to the natural world?

Any measure then, serves to activate a counting to begin? So you choose to be discrete. Some how you cannot distance yourself from any operation as to say the location is other then a configuration space, and that you are operating within it?

So the question is, when do you first become aware? What is considered outside of time, if you think that time refers too, when counting begins? So you are in your subjective states, whether these are real or not remains to be seen, so how do you quantify this? Do you have a way of keeping time in the subjective world.

Abstract space(mathematics) are totally outside of time?

I guess it is sort of like asking what first cause is to imply. Yet, theoretical definition is to say that string theory pushes back time much further to such a beginning then Steven Weinberg's first three minutes. The act in itself is related to "microseconds" when pushing back perspective, and not Weinberg's minutes

The background(WMAP) initially is a foundation with which the universe is painted. Then you add in the progressiveness of the parameters with which you use to define the universe?

So theoretically, you start counting when? The abstractness is contained in the mathematical structure of the universe which has been chosen to be perceived by observing in that abstract framework.

When you've chosen virtually reality, you have choose to model the framework(subjective /objectively) as well? We use it to model abstract language. Is that real?

So recap on use of measure of natural units then.

In physics, natural units are physical units of measurement defined in terms of universal physical constants in such a manner that some chosen physical constants take on the numerical value of one when expressed in terms of a particular set of natural units. Natural units are intended to elegantly simplify particular algebraic expressions appearing in physical law or to normalize some chosen physical quantities that are properties of universal elementary particles and that may be reasonably believed to be constant. However, what may be believed and forced to be constant in one system of natural units can very well be allowed or even assumed to vary in another natural unit system. Natural units are natural because the origin of their definition comes only from properties of nature and not from any human construct. Planck units are often, without qualification, called "natural units" but are only one system of natural units among other systems. Planck units might be considered unique in that the set of units are not based on properties of any prototype, object, or particle but are based only on properties of free space.Natural units
 So we have effectively run into a problem.

Click the image to open in full size.  

TWO UNIVERSES of different dimension and obeying disparate physical laws are rendered completely equivalent by the holographic principle. Theorists have demonstrated this principle mathematically for a specific type of five-dimensional spacetime ("anti–de Sitter") and its four-dimensional boundary. In effect, the 5-D universe is recorded like a hologram on the 4-D surface at its periphery. Superstring theory rules in the 5-D spacetime, but a so-called conformal field theory of point particles operates on the 4-D hologram. A black hole in the 5-D spacetime is equivalent to hot radiation on the hologram--for example, the hole and the radiation have the same entropy even though the physical origin of the entropy is completely different for each case. Although these two descriptions of the universe seem utterly unalike, no experiment could distinguish between them, even in principle.

When you are looking out toward the universe you are looking for the reasons as to why the universe is doing what it is doing. What is happening in one place in terms of black hole production in the cosmos? Do these have implications, as in other cosmological sources as to imply, the universe is doing what it is doing?

See Also:

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Think About Nature on Edge.Org

Lee Smolin

The main question I'm asking myself, the question that puts everything together, is how to do cosmology; how to make a theory of the universe as a whole system. This is said to be the golden age of cosmology and it is from an observational point of view, but from a theoretical point of view it's almost a disaster. It's crazy the kind of ideas that we find ourselves thinking about. And I find myself wanting to go back to basics—to basic ideas and basic principles—and understand how we describe the world in a physical theory. See:Think About Nature

See Also:

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Getting Perspective on Time

Time has no independent existence apart from the order of events by which we measure it.Albert Einstein

Currently with the new book written by Lee Smolin about Time, to me, it is a fundamental question about what arises, and,  on how we use time to measure. Also for me,  to ask what relevance time means,  as an emergent product for any beginning.

LEE SMOLIN- Physicist, Perimeter Institute; Author, The Trouble With Physics

Thinking In Time Versus Thinking Outside Of Time

One very old and pervasive habit of thought is to imagine that the true answer to whatever question we are wondering about lies out there in some eternal domain of "timeless truths." The aim of re-search is then to "discover" the answer or solution in that already existing timeless domain. For example, physicists often speak as if the final theory of everything already exists in a vast timeless Platonic space of mathematical objects. This is thinking outside of time. See: WHAT SCIENTIFIC CONCEPT WOULD IMPROVE EVERYBODY'S COGNITIVE TOOLKIT?
 A "scientific concept" may come from philosophy, logic, economics, jurisprudence, or other analytic enterprises, as long as it is a rigorous conceptual tool that may be summed up succinctly (or "in a phrase") but has broad application to understanding the world.

What ignited this question for me goes to a comment I wrote as to what I saw as a precursor to this question for Lee Smolin and others. Further to this, the lessons and explanation Sean Carroll gave toward how we look at time.

Darwinian evolutionary biology is the prototype for thinking in time because at its heart is the realization that natural processes developing in time can lead to the creation of genuinely novel structures. Even novel laws can emerge when the structures to which they apply come to exist. Evolutionary dynamics has no need of abstract and vast spaces like all the possible viable animals, DNA sequences, sets of proteins, or biological laws. Exaptations are too unpredictable and too dependent on the whole suite of living creatures to be analyzed and coded into properties of DNA sequences. Better, as Stuart Kauffman proposes, to think of evolutionary dynamics as the exploration, in time, by the biosphere, of the adjacent possible. See: Thinking In Time Versus Thinking Outside Of Time
While we then become cognoscente of the rules around which parameters have meaning in relation to Time, it was also important to understand that the idea of cross pollination of the sciences recognizes what is brought to the table.

"It is very good that Stu Kauffman and Lee are making this serious attempt to save a notion of time, since I think the issue of timelessness is central to the unification of general relativity with quantum mechanics. The notion of time capsules is still certainly only a conjecture. However, as Lee admits, it has proven very hard to show that the idea is definitely wrong. Moreover, the history of physics has shown that it is often worth taking disconcerting ideas seriously, and I think timelessness is such a one. At the moment, I do not find Lee and Stu's arguments for time threaten my position too strongly."- Julian Barbour

In regard to The Adjacent Possible I was well aware of the implication and parameters  around such thinking to realize that even while applying the trade,  Stuart, was traveling new ground. His thinking is encouraging the flexibility that I am talking about with regard the restrictions one places on them self. I encourage this kind of thinking so as to bolster the lull in scientific advancement to stimulate and foster the idealization of creativity that I think has become stagnate while  moving from one point in the measure to the next. Why Murray Gell-Mann's  move and his expertise is understood in context of new approaches. Simplicity and complexity.

Setting Time Aright

See Also:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Intent in the Actualized


Return to Home,
Safety seeking,
In my mind,
Continually speaking

Out of the sky,
Eyes Earthbound,
Stalagmite in open cavern,
Fertile lands all around.

The era of design,
Like a Justice Hall,
Women in bonnets,
Mennonite clothes,

In the Town of Williams,
Some time ago,
In the late eighteen hundreds,
Scenery I know.

by Platohagel

 Before I begin I just wanted to say I am deeply connected to the science today and what I am displaying now may not sit well with scientists.  Those who discount subjectivity as a part of our existence not tried and tested. This subjective existence\experience is real and very individual. How could you discount this from a point of a view of a scientist.  I thought they might say, but yes,  lived with responsibility and in a true validated sense?

So it was in this sense that one could consider the exercise that follows as a science fiction possibility that raises the questions about time and the relationship of the probability distribution of a possible future and the lived past. The present, in becoming, and in this case,  I wanted to look at the past.

The question is that we know that the world of subjective influences and experiences are deeply personal in that they become the life you have live. We work all day and we work all night in the virtual realities.You discover the Intent in the Actualized?

This distinction if not understood within the parameters of the subject entertained it would have lacked the understanding that our virtual reality within the confines of the parameters as being explicit in what we create would have been missed. I can talk about such a park and you might believe the context of such an example if I were to tell you that I was able to remember that at a very young age.

Can an individual experience the actualized past as if viewing a place in our history as part of that history. These questions had crossed my mind over 35 years ago as I explored the dream world. I tried to keep as much of this in poetic form dreaming as I was experiencing it. So I thought it would be nice to write it down in that form.

Now there are many reasons why this area of subjectivity was of interest to me. It was in that what I believed, that not only our footprints left an image in the sand, but our impressions of our life was in the footprints.

Two section variable capacitor, used in superhet receiver
Technically such excursions would have been of interest if I could track the ability by some means. So it was not beyond me to think that a tuning could take place by some individuals in helping to reconstruct the past  by going back in time. Not only by Carbon dating. But possibly by some other technical means as well in terms of a super heterodyne solution.

Now I am sure the idea of a fireman and a radio might be trigger in your mind. Aurora flickering in the sky and a son who goes to work on his Dad's radio?  You will find many references to time travel in this blog because of this idea I have had for a long time about our the ability each of has to visit the historical past as an Intent in the Actualized.

Frequency is a 2000 science-fiction film that contains elements of the time travel, thriller and alternate history film genres.

So the idea for me here was about creating a device that could tune into the past? Why then, is it we are not capable in consciousness as a virtual reality?

The Super Hero Versions

Miracles StudiosThrone Plates
To activate Thorne plates, the distance between each plate must be less than the width of an atom. The resulting wormhole will be equally small, so getting in and out might be difficult. To widen the portal, some scientists suggest using a laser to inject immense amounts of negative energy. In addition, Thorne believes that radiation effects created by gravitons, or particles of gravity, might fry you as you enter the wormhole. According to string theory, however, this probably won't happen, so it's scant reason to cancel your trip.

Miracles StudiosGott Loop
To take you back one year, the string must weigh about half as much as the Milky Way galaxy. You'll need a mighty big spaceship to make that rectangle.

Many scientists believe the big bang that created the universe left behind cosmic strings - thin, infinitely long filaments of compressed matter. In 1991, Princeton physicist J. Richard Gott discovered that two of these structures, arranged in parallel and moving in opposite directions, would warp space-time to allow travel to the past. He later reworked the idea to involve a single cosmic-string loop. A Gott loop can take you back in time but not forward. The guide to building your own:

Miracles StudiosGott Shell
This is a relatively slow method of time travel, and life inside the shell could become tedious.

In essence, a Gott shell is a huge concentration of mass. The shell's sheer density creates a gravitational field that slows down the clock for anyone enclosed within it. Outside, time rolls along at its familiar pace, but inside, it creeps. Thus the Gott shell is useful for travel into the future only. If you're planning a jaunt to the past using a Gott loop, you might want to bring along a Gott shell for the return trip. What to do, step by step:

Miracles StudiosVan Stokum Cylinder
The cylinder must be infinitely long, which could add slightly to its cost.

Mass and energy act on space-time like a rock thrown into a pond: the bigger the rock, the bigger the ripples. Physicist W. J. van Stockum realized in 1937 that an immense cylinder spinning at near-light speed will stir space-time as though it were molasses, pulling it along as the cylinder turns. Although Van Stockum himself didn't recognize it, anyone orbiting such a cylinder in the direction of the spin will be caught in the current and, from the perspective of a distant observer, exceed the speed of light. The result: Time flows backward. Circle the cylinder in the other direction with just the right trajectory, and this machine can take you into the future as well. How it works:

Kerr Ring
The Kerr ring is a one-way ticket. The black hole's gravity is so great that, once you step through it, you won't be able to return.

When Karl Schwarzschild solved Einstein's equations in 1917, he found that stars can collapse into infinitesimally small points in space - what we now call black holes. Four decades later, physicist Roy Kerr discovered that some stars are saved from total collapse and become rotating rings. Kerr didn't regard these rings as time machines. However, because their intense gravity distorts space-time, and because they permit large objects to enter on one side and exit on the other in one piece, Kerr-type black holes can serve as portals to the past or the future. If finding one with the proper dimensions is too much trouble, you can always build one yourself:
See:A User's Guide to Time Travel-Superpower Issue

See Also: Tom Campbell: Calgary Theory only (Sat) 2/3

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

The Synaptic World of Experience and Knowledge

 It is important that people realize that as much as topological seasoning is added to the world by myself,  I see ourselves intrinsically linked to the inductive/deductive process. It is as if the tail of each is linked as a image of a our inner and outer relation with the world continually exchanged. We are the central process in this, as if link the past and the future together, as to the outcome in life. A self eventual recognition of the arche and our place on it as to the decision and acceptance of outcome according to our conclusions?
I think that Fig. 34.1 best expresses my position on this question, where each of three worlds, Platonic-mathematical, physical and mental-has it’s own kind of reality, and where each is (deeply and mysteriously) found in one that precedes it ( the worlds take cyclicly). I like to think that, in a sense the Platonic world may be the most primitive of the three, since mathematics is a kind of necessity, virtually conjuring its very existence through logic alone. Be that as it may, there is a further mystery, or paradox, of the cyclic aspect of these worlds , where each seems to be able to encompass the succeeding one in its entirety, while itself seeming to depend only upon a small part of its predecessor.”(Page 1028-The Road to Reality- Roger Penrose- Borzoi Book, Alfred A. Knoff- 2004)

For me, the visual helps to reinforce some  the understanding that is required of how let's say Sir Roger Penrose may look at the idea of "information transference?" How I may see this in individuals who are interacting with the world. I believe too, that how the universe is formulated into the Cyclical Universe is to direct our attention to the facets of time attached to the ideas of how this is formulated within ourselves as well. This are the same correlations of the past, as well as the future, in our now, in our universe(our neighborhood) as well.

If we can put everything together, we might have a model that reproduces everything we see in our detector."

Plato's problem is the term given by Noam Chomsky to the gap between knowledge and experience. It presents the question of how we account for our knowledge when environmental conditions seem to be an insufficient source of information. It is used in linguistics to refer to the "argument from poverty of the stimulus" (APS). In a more general sense, Plato’s Problem refers to the problem of explaining a "lack of input."
Solving Plato’s Problem involves explaining the gap between what one knows and the apparent lack of substantive input from experience (the environment). Plato's Problem is most clearly illustrated in the Meno dialogue, in which Socrates demonstrates that an uneducated boy nevertheless understands geometric principles.

The understanding here is that all knowledge exists in the universe and that we only have to awaken it within ourselves. This hasn't changed my view on the universal access to information that we can tap into. How is this accomplished.

This view I carry to the world of science and look for correspondences in experimental associations. I believe the answers we are looking for already exist.  It is just a matter of asking the right questions, as well as looking inside as to the truth of what we are looking at,  as a potential in the discourse of our existence as human beings. The role we are playing as components of this reality to better ourselves.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Another Kind of Sideways

 I wanted to expand on where the title,"Another Kind of Sideways." This blog posting  came from an interview with Clifford of Asymptotia by PBS. He had a posting of his own entitled Multiverse Musings about a Nova series on PBS in the Fall related to Brian Greene's book, The Fabric of the Cosmos.

Where would these other universes be in relation to ours? Is there a way to envision it?

Well, we live in three spatial dimensions: We move back and forth, up and down, left to right. And then there's time, so that's our four-dimensional universe. Another universe might be essentially right next to ours by going in another direction that's not one of those four. We might call it "another kind of sideways." See: Riddles of the Multiverse

The whole context of the idea of the Multiverse could have in my layman view be classified as speaking about and argued as the basis of "existing outside of time." I just wanted to say that mathematically this definition of the Multiverse can actually exist in that framework, yet had to be extrapolated to the real universe we live in and how other universes may apply.

SOCRATES: But if he always possessed this knowledge he would always have known; or if he has acquired the knowledge he could not have acquired it in this life, unless he has been taught geometry; for he may be made to do the same with all geometry and every other branch of knowledge. Now, has any one ever taught him all this? You must know about him, if, as you say, he was born and bred in your house.SEE:Meno by Plato

I am always interested in the way a correlation is struck, from a scientist's mind when looking at the world and the comparisons they may find in the real world. I mean, to stand on top of a mountain as I did, you get this sense of the terrain, and how the landscape appears. How from an idealist position, a mathematical position is described and how the universe can be described?

LEE SMOLIN- Physicist, Perimeter Institute; Author, The Trouble With Physics

Thinking In Time Versus Thinking Outside Of Time

One very old and pervasive habit of thought is to imagine that the true answer to whatever question we are wondering about lies out there in some eternal domain of "timeless truths." The aim of re-search is then to "discover" the answer or solution in that already existing timeless domain. For example, physicists often speak as if the final theory of everything already exists in a vast timeless Platonic space of mathematical objects. This is thinking outside of time. See:A "scientific concept" may come from philosophy, logic, economics, jurisprudence, or other analytic enterprises, as long as it is a rigorous conceptual tool that may be summed up succinctly (or "in a phrase") but has broad application to understanding the world.

I find it hard sometimes to try and explain something that is "not outside of time."  That such description of reality while confounding to those like me less able to understand the mathematical world of such truths that contrary to Lee Smolin's opinion such schematics can be found to exist "within each of us." How we build our world from the inside, and how we contain it.

Is the mathematical description of  polytopes any less real as a mathematical basis?

If one is to believe that a mountain top represents some "perfect symmetry" then what said all those places in the valleys can exist and would not represent some genus figure? What are we saying about the possible universes, locations within the universe,  and the creation of?

That a pencil standing on point, could fall one way or another, or a description of a false vacuum to a true could represent something leading away from such symmetry? Why the problem with such mathematical and schematize attributes? Would you as a scientist turn your back on such mathematical interpretations of the world?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

How Time Ages the Pyramids

Believing that something must be true about the world because you can’t imagine otherwise is, five hundred years into the Age of Science, not a recommended strategy for acquiring reliable knowledge. It goes back to the classic conflict of rationalism vs. empiricism. “Rationalism” sounds good — who doesn’t want to be rational? But the idea behind it is that we can reach true conclusions about the world by reason alone. We don’t ever have to leave the comfort of our living room; we can just sit around, sharing some single-malt Scotch and fine cigars, thinking really hard about the universe, and thereby achieve some real understanding. Empiricism, on the other hand, says that we should try to imagine all possible ways the world should be, and then actually go out and look at it to decide which way it really is. Rationalism is traditionally associated with Descartes, Leibniz, and Spinoza, while empiricism is associated with Locke, Berkeley, and Hume — but of course these categories never quite fit perfectly well.SEE:What Can We Know About The World Without Looking At It?

I had been able to isolate Lee's Smolin's method of approach as to whether something can exist within, or, exists outside of time. Thoughts about Meno come to mind and Plato's Problem and Meno: How Accurately Portrayed?

The idea that truth is timeless and resides outside the universe was the essence of Plato's philosophy, exemplified in the parable of the slave boy that was meant to argue that discovery is merely remembering. Lee Smolin

Of course this article of yours Sean has lead to interesting thoughts. His talk with Memories Arise Out of a Equilibrium David does one logically proceed with inquiry. Why is the past so different, in so many ways, from the future? (12:20)

Sean Carroll
This raises all sorts of questions, the most basic of which are: “What counts as `looking’ vs. `not looking’?” and “Do we really need a separate law of physics to describe the evolution of systems that are being looked at?”
See:Quantum Diavlog

When you are told that carrots have human rights because they share half our genes -- but not how gene percentages confer rights -- wizard. When someone announces that the nature-nurture debate has been settled because there is evidence that a given percentage of our political opinions are genetically inherited, but they don't explain how genes cause opinions, they've settled nothing. They are saying that our opinions are caused by wizards, and presumably so are their own. That the truth consists of hard to vary assertions about reality is the most important fact about the physical world David Deutsch: A new way to explain explanation


Of course thanks to Lubos for link on Rationalism vs empiricism You can find his thoughts there and more information around his heading below.

The dispute between rationalism and empiricism concerns the extent to which we are dependent upon sense experience in our effort to gain knowledge. Rationalists claim that there are significant ways in which our concepts and knowledge are gained independently of sense experience. Empiricists claim that sense experience is the ultimate source of all our concepts and knowledge.

Rationalists generally develop their view in two ways. First, they argue that there are cases where the content of our concepts or knowledge outstrips the information that sense experience can provide. Second, they constuct accounts of how reason in some form or other provides that additional information about the world. Empiricists present complementary lines of thought. First, they develop accounts of how experience provides the information that rationalists cite, insofar as we have it in the first place. (Empiricists will at times opt for skepticism as an alternative to rationalism: if experience cannot provide the concepts or knowledge the rationalists cite, then we don't have them.) Second, empiricists attack the rationalists' accounts of how reason is a source of concepts or knowledge.
See: Rationalism vs. Empiricism
The Pyramid(as an expression of Liberal Arts Encapsulated) is a combination of  the Trivium , and  the Quadrivium

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Igniting Neurons:Time Travel

Life must be understood backwards; but... it must be lived forward.
Soren Kierkegaard

The image illustrates the Wayback machine from the Mr. Peabody and Sherman segment of the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon. The image supports the article on the subject: Wayback machine. The screen shot was selected to illustrate the nature and size of the Wayback machine (compare to images of UNIVAC or ENIAC machines).

I mean whats sets the whole package off to wonder how such neurons once isolated,  as to being components of all the things we learn, then becomes a method by which we now see ? What sets off the spark to think that technologies will be superseded by the efforts by mind,  to think that all we have to do is turn the switch off? The technologies no longer work? That this is somehow the fate of a mind who no longer seeks to find meaning, or,  is settled to the fate of mundane happenings which replay them-self time and time again.

Boids is an artificial life program, developed by Craig Reynolds in 1986, which simulates the flocking behaviour of birds. His paper on this topic was published in 1987 in the proceedings of the ACM SIGGRAPH conference. The name refers to a "bird-like object", but its pronunciation evokes that of "bird" in a stereotypical New York accent.
As with most artificial life simulations, Boids is an example of emergent behavior; that is, the complexity of Boids arises from the interaction of individual agents (the boids, in this case) adhering to a set of simple rules. The rules applied in the simplest Boids world are as follows:

So, you've built up this vast reservoir of information as neurons, and all time that began from embryonic growth seeks to find them-self distinct to all the functions of the human body.  To think we have become who we are today,  as a sign of all these possibilities are but the evolution of a pattern played out as an example of the evolution of being manifested through this body? Manifest now,  once one expresses through the fingers as an extension of mind, to be built up, as all those things which represent self .

So you step back then, looking as if from outside, looking in,  as to wonder what is new being garnered are but piecemeal represents some larger view of the reality of groups, to present an awareness greater then that which is though to exist, as some local issue in it's understanding,  is more the societal flock with purpose, unawares of the significance of choices made? How do societies change?

Andrey Kravtsov's computer modelling comes to mind. See: Early Universe Formation

So there is then this reservoir of information, many facets and capabilities of mind to choose those things which are brought together through the journey,  all encompassing it's growth, this potential exists as if a flash, like lightning strikes from which are born new neuronal pathways. Perception, is then changed. Many connections in life take place where none were seen before.

See Also:

Monday, July 18, 2011

Internet Archive: WayBack Machine

Internet Archive

Coordinates: 37°46′56.3″N 122°28′17.65″W
Internet Archive
Type Digital library
Founded 1996
Key people Brewster Kahle (Chairman)
Alexa rank decrease 230 (April 2011)[1]
Available in English

Internet Archive headquarters was in the Presidio, a former US military base in San Francisco, from 1996 to 2009.

As of November 2009, new Internet Archive headquarters at 300 Funston in San Francisco, CA, a former Christian Science Church

Mirror of the Internet Archive in the Bibliotheca Alexandrina

(Click on Image)

The Internet Archive is a non-profit digital library with the stated mission of "universal access to all knowledge."[2][3] It offers permanent storage and access to collections of digitized materials, including websites, music, moving images, and nearly 3 million public domain books. The Internet Archive was founded by Brewster Kahle in 1996. It is a member of the IIPC (International Internet Preservation Consortium).[4]

With offices located in San Francisco, California, USA and data centers in San Francisco, Redwood City, and Mountain View, California, USA, the Archive's largest collection is its web archive, "snapshots of the World Wide Web." To ensure the stability and endurance of the Internet Archive, its collection is mirrored at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Egypt.

The Archive allows the public to both upload and download digital material to its data cluster, and provides unrestricted online access to that material at no cost. The Archive also oversees one of the world's largest book digitization projects. It is a member of the American Library Association and is officially recognized by the State of California as a library.[5]

In addition to its archiving function, the Archive is an activist organization, advocating for a free and open Internet.

The Archive is a 501(c)(3) non-profit operating in the United States. It has a staff of 200, most of whom are book scanners in its book scanning centers. Its main office in San Francisco houses about 30 employees. The Archive has an annual budget of $10 million, derived from a variety of sources: revenue from its Web crawling services, various partnerships, grants, donations, and the Kahle-Austin Foundation.[6]



Brewster Kahle founded the Archive in 1996 at the same time that he began the for-profit web crawling company Alexa Internet. The Archive began to archive the World Wide Web from 1996, but it did not make this collection available until 2001, when it developed the Wayback Machine. In late 1999, the Archive expanded its collections beyond the Web archive, beginning with the Prelinger Archive. Now the Internet Archive includes texts, audio, moving images, and software. It hosts a number of other projects: the NASA Images Archive, the contract crawling service Archive-It, and the wiki-editable library catalog and book information site Open Library. Recently, the Archive has begun working to provide specialized services relating to the information access needs of the print-disabled.

According to its website:
Most societies place importance on preserving artifacts of their culture and heritage. Without such artifacts, civilization has no memory and no mechanism to learn from its successes and failures. Our culture now produces more and more artifacts in digital form. The Archive's mission is to help preserve those artifacts and create an Internet library for researchers, historians, and scholars.

Wayback Machine

The Internet Archive has capitalized on the popular use of the term "WABAC Machine" from a segment of the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon, and uses the name "Wayback Machine" for its service that allows archives of the World Wide Web to be searched and accessed.[7] This service allows users to see archived versions of web pages of the past, what the Internet Archive calls a "three dimensional index". Millions of websites and their associated data (images, source code, documents, etc.) are saved in a gigantic database. The service can be used to see what previous versions of websites used to look like, to grab original source code from websites that may no longer be directly available, or to visit websites that no longer even exist. Not all websites are available, however, because many website owners choose to exclude their sites. As with all sites based on data from web crawlers, the Internet Archive misses large areas of the web for a variety of other reasons. International biases have also been found in its coverage, although this does not seem to be the result of a deliberate policy [8]

Examples from the Wayback
Machine's archives:
The use of the term "Wayback Machine" in the context of the Internet Archive has become so common that "Wayback Machine" and "Internet Archive" are almost synonymous. This usage occurs in popular culture, e.g., in the television show Law and Order: Criminal Intent ("Legacy", first run Aug. 3, 2008), an extra playing a computer tech uses the "Wayback Machine" to find an archive of a student's Facebook style website. Snapshots usually take at least 6–18 months to be added.

Open Library

The Open Library is another project of the Internet Archive. The site seeks to include a web page database for every book ever published, a sort of open source version of WorldCat. It holds 23 million catalog records of books, in addition to the full texts of about 1,600,000 public domain books, which are fully readable and downloadable.[9][10] Open Library is a free/open source software project, with its source code freely available on the Open Library site.


First deployed in early 2006, Archive-It is a subscription service that allows institutions and individuals to build and preserve collections of born digital content.[11] Through a web application, Archive-It partners can harvest, catalog, manage, and within 24 hours browse their archived collections. Collections are hosted by the Internet Archive and available to the public with full-text search. Content collected through Archive-It is stored with a primary and back up copy, is periodically indexed into the Internet Archive's general archive, and a copy of the data can be sent to the partner institutions.

As of March 2009, Archive-It has 125 partner institutions in 42 US States and 11 countries who have captured over a 1.5 billion URL's for 963 public collections.

Archive-It partners are universities and college libraries, state archives, federal institutions, museums and cultural organizations, including the Electronic Literature Organization, the State Archives of North Carolina, the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Stanford University, the National Library of Australia, the Research Libraries Group (RLG), and many others.

NASA Images was created through a Space Act Agreement between the Internet Archive and NASA to bring public access to NASA's image, video, and audio collections in a single, searchable resource. The NASA Images team works closely with all of the NASA centers to keep adding to the ever-growing collection at The site launched in July 2008 and now has more than 100,000 items online.

Media collections

In addition to web archives, the Internet Archive maintains extensive collections of digital media that are attested by the uploader to be in the public domain in the United States or licensed under a license that allows redistribution, such as Creative Commons licenses. The media are organized into collections by media type (moving images, audio, text, etc.), and into sub-collections by various criteria. Each of the main collections includes an "Open Source" sub-collection where general contributions by the public are stored.

Moving image collection

Aside from feature films, IA's Moving Image collection includes: newsreels; classic cartoons; pro- and anti-war propaganda; Skip Elsheimer's "A.V. Geeks" collection; and ephemeral material from Prelinger Archives, such as advertising, educational and industrial films and amateur and home movie collections.
IA's Brick Films collection contains stop-motion animation filmed with Lego bricks, some of which are "remakes" of feature films. The Election 2004 collection is a non-partisan public resource for sharing video materials related to the 2004 United States Presidential Election. The Independent News collection includes sub-collections such as the Internet Archive's World At War competition from 2001, in which contestants created short films demonstrating "why access to history matters." Among their most-downloaded video files are eyewitness recordings of the devastating 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. The September 11th Television Archive contains archival footage from the world's major television networks of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001 as they unfolded on live television.
Some of the films available on the Internet Archive are:
See also Wikipedia list of films freely available on the Internet Archive.

Audio collection

The audio collection includes music, audio books, news broadcasts, old time radio shows and a wide variety of other audio files.

The Live Music Archive sub-collection includes over 50,000 concert recordings from independent artists, as well as more established artists and musical ensembles with permissive rules about recording their concerts such as the Grateful Dead, and more recently, The Smashing Pumpkins. Jordan Zevon has also allowed anyone to share concert recordings of his father Warren Zevon on the Internet Archive.

Text collection

Internet Archive book scanner
The texts collection includes digitized books from various libraries around the world as well as many special collections. The Internet Archive operates 23 scanning centers in five countries, digitizing about 1,000 books a day, financially supported by libraries and foundations.[12] As of November 2008, when there were about 1 million texts, the entire collection was over 0.5 petabytes, which includes raw camera images, cropped and skewed images, PDFs, and raw OCR data.[13]

Between about 2006 and 2008 Microsoft Corporation had a special relationship with Internet Archive texts through its Live Search Books project, scanning over 300,000 books which were contributed to the collection, as well as financial support and scanning equipment. On May 23, 2008 Microsoft announced it would be ending the Live Book Search project and no longer scanning books.[14] Microsoft made its scanned books available without contractual restriction and donated its scanning equipment to its former partners.[14]

Around October 2007 Archive users began uploading public domain books from Google Book Search.[15] As of May 2011 there were over 900,000 Google-digitized books in the Archive's collection, out of a total of 2.8 million books. The books are identical to the copies found on Google, except without the Google watermarks, and are available for unrestricted use and download, like all Internet Archive materials.[16]

Controversies and legal disputes

National Security Letter

An NSL issued to the Internet Archive demanding information about a user
On May 8, 2008, it was revealed that the Internet Archive successfully challenged an FBI National Security Letter asking for logs on an undisclosed user.[17][18]


In late 2002, the Internet Archive removed various sites critical of Scientology from the Wayback Machine.[19] The error message stated that this was in response to a "request by the site owner."[20] It was later clarified that lawyers from the Church of Scientology had demanded the removal and that the actual site owners did not want their material removed.[21]

Healthcare Advocates, Inc.

In 2003, Harding Earley Follmer & Frailey defended a client from a trademark dispute using the Archive's Wayback Machine. The lawyers were able to show that the plaintiff's claims were invalid based on the content of their web site from several years prior. The plaintiff, Healthcare Advocates, then amended their complaint to include the Internet Archive, accusing the organization of copyright infringement as well as violations of the DMCA and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Healthcare Advocates claimed that, since they had installed a robots.txt file on their website, even if after the initial lawsuit was filed, the Archive should have removed all previous copies of the plaintiff website from the Wayback Machine.[22] The lawsuit was settled out of court.[23]

Robots.txt is used as part of the Robots Exclusion Standard, a voluntary protocol the Internet Archive respects that disallows bots from indexing certain pages delineated by the creator as off-limits. As a result, the Internet Archive has rendered unavailable a number of websites that are now inaccessible through the Wayback Machine. Currently, the Internet Archive applies robots.txt rules retroactively; if a site blocks the Internet Archive, like Healthcare Advocates, any previously archived pages from the domain are also rendered unavailable. In cases of blocked sites, only the robots.txt file is archived.
However, the Internet Archive also states, "Sometimes a web site owner will contact us directly and ask us to stop crawling or archiving a site. We comply with these requests."[24] In addition, the website says: "The Internet Archive is not interested in preserving or offering access to Web sites or other Internet documents of persons who do not want their materials in the collection."[25]

Suzanne Shell

On December 12, 2005, activist Suzanne Shell demanded Internet Archive pay her US$100,000 for archiving her website between 1999 and 2004.[26] Internet Archive filed a declaratory judgment action in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California on January 20, 2006, seeking a judicial determination that Internet Archive did not violate Shell’s copyright. Shell responded and brought a countersuit against Internet Archive for archiving her site, which she alleges is in violation of her terms of service.[27] On February 13, 2007, a judge for the United States District Court for the District of Colorado dismissed all counterclaims except breach of contract.[26] The Internet Archive did not move to dismiss copyright infringement claims Shell asserted arising out of its copying activities, which will also go forward.[28]

On April 25, 2007, Internet Archive and Suzanne Shell jointly announced the settlement of their lawsuit. The Internet Archive said, “Internet Archive has no interest in including materials in the Wayback Machine of persons who do not wish to have their Web content archived. We recognize that Ms. Shell has a valid and enforceable copyright in her Web site and we regret that the inclusion of her Web site in the Wayback Machine resulted in this litigation. We are happy to have this case behind us.” Ms. Shell said, “I respect the historical value of Internet Archive’s goal. I never intended to interfere with that goal nor cause it any harm.”[29]

Grateful Dead

In November 2005, free downloads of Grateful Dead concerts were removed from the site. John Perry Barlow identified Bob Weir, Mickey Hart, and Bill Kreutzmann as the instigators of the change, according to a New York Times article.[30] Phil Lesh commented on the change in a November 30, 2005, posting to his personal website:
It was brought to my attention that all of the Grateful Dead shows were taken down from right before Thanksgiving. I was not part of this decision making process and was not notified that the shows were to be pulled. I do feel that the music is the Grateful Dead's legacy and I hope that one way or another all of it is available for those who want it.[31]
A November 30 forum post from Brewster Kahle summarized what appeared to be the compromise reached among the band members. Audience recordings could be downloaded or streamed, but soundboard recordings were to be available for streaming only. Concerts have since been re-added.[32]

Opposition to Google Books Settlement

The Internet Archive is a member of the Open Book Alliance, which has been among the most outspoken critics of the Google Book Settlement. The Archive advocates an alternative digital library project.

See also

Similar projects



  1. ^ " - Site Information from Alexa". Retrieved 2011-04-17.
  2. ^ Internet Archive Frequently Asked Questions
  3. ^ Internet Archive: Universal Access to all Knowledge
  4. ^ Members (International Internet Preservation Consortium)
  5. ^ "Internet Archive officially a library", May 2, 2007.
  6. ^
  7. ^ Green, Heather (February 28, 2002). "A Library as Big as the World: Brewster Kahle has the technology to assemble the ultimate archive of human knowledge. What's stopping him? Restrictive copyright laws". Business Week Online. Retrieved 2007-06-25.
  8. ^ Thelwall, M. & Vaughan, L. (2004). A fair history of the Web? Examining country balance in the Internet Archive, Library & Information Science Research, 26(2), 162-176.
  9. ^ Gonsalves, Antone (December 20, 2006). "Internet Archive Claims Progress Against Google Library Initiative". InformationWeek. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
  10. ^ "The Open Library Makes Its Online Debut". Chronicle of Higher Education, The Wired Campus. July 19, 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-07-30.
  11. ^ Stefanie Olsen, "Preserving the Web one group at a time", CNet, May 1, 2006.
  12. ^ "Books Scanning to be Publicly Funded", announcement by Brewster Khale, May 23, 2008.
  13. ^ "Bulk Access to OCR for 1 Million Books", via Open Library Blog, by raj, November 24, 2008.
  14. ^ a b "Book search winding down", Live Search Blog. Official announcement from Microsoft. Last accessed May 23, 2008.
  15. ^ Google Books at Internet Archive.
  16. ^ Books imported from Google have a metadata tag of scanner:google for searching purposes. The archive links back to Google for PDF copies, but also maintains a local PDF copy, which is viewable under the "All Files: HTTP" link.
  17. ^ FBI rescinds secret order for Internet Archive records, CNet.
  18. ^ Nakashima, Ellen, "FBI Backs Off From Secret Order for Data After Lawsuit", Washington Post, May 8, 2008.
  19. ^ Bowman, Lisa M (September 24, 2002). "Net archive silences Scientology critic". CNET Retrieved 2007-01-04.
  20. ^ Jeff (September 23, 2002). "exclusions from the Wayback Machine" (Blog). Wayback Machine Forum. Internet Archive. Retrieved 2007-01-04. Author and Date indicate initiation of forum thread.
  21. ^ Miller, Ernest (September 24). "Sherman, Set the Wayback Machine for Scientology" (Blog). LawMeme. Yale Law School. Retrieved 2007-01-04. The posting is billed as a 'feature' and lacks an associated year designation; comments by other contributors appear after the 'feature' .
  22. ^ Dye, Jessica (2005). "Website Sued for Controversial Trip into Internet Past". EContent. 28 (11): 8–9.
  23. ^ Bangeman, Eric (August 31 2006). "Internet Archive Settles Suit Over Wayback Machine". Ars technica. Retrieved 2007-11-29.
  24. ^ Some sites are not available because of Robots.txt or other exclusions.
  25. ^ How can I remove my site's pages from the Wayback Machine?.
  26. ^ a b Lewis T. Babcock (February 13, 2007). Internet Archive v. Shell (PDF), Civil Action No. 06cv01726LTBCBS.
  27. ^ Claburn, Thomas (March 16, 2007). "Colorado Woman Sues To Hold Web Crawlers To Contracts". InformationWeek. Retrieved 2007-07-29.
  28. ^ Samson, Martin. Internet Archive v. Suzanne Shell. via Phillips Nizer LLP.
  29. ^ Internet Archive and Suzanne Shell Settle Lawsuit, April 25, 2007.
  30. ^ Jeff Leeds; Jesse Fox Mayshark (December 1, 2005). "Wrath of Deadheads stalls a Web crackdown". International Herald Tribune (republication of article from The New York Times). Retrieved July 14, 2010.
  31. ^ Phil Lesh (November 30, 2005). "An Announcement from Phil Lesh" (Blog). Hotline. Retrieved 2007-01-05.
  32. ^ Brewster Kahle; Matt Vernon (December 1, 2005). "Good News and an Apology: GD on the Internet Archive". Live Music Archive Forum. Internet Archive. Retrieved July 14, 2010. Authors and date indicate the first posting in the forum thread.

Further reading

External links