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Phoenix links

Sunday,  03/05/23  10:57 AM

Here's an idea: what if it were possible to resurrect dead links automatically, using the awesome Internet Archive?

Frequent readers know, I like going back and reading old blog posts; in fact clicking Flight while having my first cup of coffee has become a daily ritual, and often inspires me to keep blogging. 

Many of those old posts are great, but many of those old links are dead!  Either sites are gone entirely, or the URL scheme has changed, or the specific content I linked is no longer online.  But many times the old site and old pages are in the Internet Archive.

Hmm, what if a simple background process runs and gardens the old links?  Try to retrieve the content, and if you get a 404 or the content is missing*, then try to find the corresponding content on the Internet Archive, and if successful, substitute the archive link for the original.  Maybe a little popup could warn the user this is what happened when the hover over the link. 

Seems doable, right?  And something which would be generally useful, not just for me and my blog, but for everyone and their blogs, and for the Internet in general.

Stay tuned :)

PS thought: this would be a nice service to embed in a link-shortener...