What Goes Up, Doesn’t Have To Come Down

Posted in Life, Web Design, on

What Goes Up, Doesn't Have To Come Down

Admittedly, I’m a bit of a pack rat. I’m not talking hoarders-style, but I do have trouble parting with little things that are memorable for me. Not just the special toys, books, and photos — I’m that person who keeps every movie ticket stub, boarding pass, and concert ticket neatly in a scrapbook to reflect on every now and then.

My tendency to hold on to memories has naturally crossed over into the digital world. I keep all e-mail conversations, I rarely delete tweets, and I have extensive archives of photography and artwork. Even MP3s of songs I’ve grown sick of are more likely to end up backed up on a CD than thrown in the Trash.

The physical scrapbook of travel memories sits on my bookshelf and belongs to me — it’s in my control. But what happens when we entrust our memories to a service on the Internet?

It seems we’re reminded about how volatile digital data is all too often. A few days ago, one of my favourite social networks, Gowalla, was permanently shut down after being acquired by Facebook in late 2011.

Gowalla closed

If you aren’t familiar, Gowalla was a popular location-based iPhone app that would allow users to “check in” to any type of place, whether it was a shop, office, landmark, airport, or anything else you could think of. Once checked in, the user would receive a “stamp” — comparable to a digital passport. And, if it was your first time checking into a new state, province, or country, you’d receive a stamp for those, too.

Gowalla Passport

Gowalla, and other check-in apps, aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. People have often wondered why I would ever use it, but it all boiled down to one thing — it kept a detailed history of my travels. They were my memories.

Up Quote

While Gowalla is no more, the people behind it understand that we want to keep those memories and they’re working on making a tool that will allow us to export our data. I’ve since switched to Foursquare as my primary check-in app. But how do we know where Foursquare will go? Will they also be acquired by the great Facebook vacuum, or will popularity fade? Of course, the benefit outweighs the risk and these things don’t stop me from using new services, but they do make me think about how I use them and how to preserve my data if they too disappear someday.

At the web conference An Event Apart in Boston last year, web developer and author Jeremy Keith discussed the topic of long-term design challenges in his talk titled All Our Yesterdays. Here’s an encore of his talk from Build Conference in Belfast in December 2011. It’s long, but worth it — Jeremy touches on some incredibly important topics including web hosting, file formats and media, domain names, and DRM licensing issues and restrictions.

Jeremy Keith - All Our Yesterdays from Build on Vimeo.

Jeremy also talks about one of the largest and saddest shutdowns of an Internet service: when Yahoo! closed Geocities in 2009, losing at least 38 million user-built pages.

A quote Jeremy referenced, from designer Phil Gyford, says it best:

“GeoCities is an awful, ugly, decrepit mess. And this is why it will be sorely missed. It’s not only a fine example of the amateur web vernacular but much of it is an increasingly rare example of a period web vernacular. GeoCities sites show what normal, non-designer, people will create if given the tools available around the turn of the millennium.”

Just last week, through a combination of some clever googling and the website Archive.org, I was lucky enough to find the remnants of one of the first websites I made and hosted on Geocities. It’s ugly and embarrassing, but what it contributes to the story of my design career is priceless.

Can we really continue to depend on third party services to entrust our data? As Jeremy said so well in his talk — nobody’s too big to fail on the web.

Publishing on the Internet is not just about blog posts, news articles, and Wikipedia entries. It’s about what everyday people do in their everyday lives. How we go about solving this problem is daunting — but acknowledging that it is a problem is a good start. If we don’t change our mindset about how we treat our data, we could look back on this time with very little of our digital history preserved.

End

Photo of Geri Coady

About Me

I’m Geri Coady — a designer and illustrator from St. John’s, Newfoundland — now living in Nottingham, UK. I've got an eye for detail, a passion for the web, and I'm ready to work with clients worldwide. Want to learn more?

13 Comments

WMI
  • WMI

You've hit the nail right on the head by mentioning that nobody's too big to fail on the web. Look at Groupon, valued at billions of dollars and still slated for failure.

In regards to storing virtual memories, cloud storage is paving the way to the future for that. Though it's true, I do love going back and finding the little things that I've posted back in my younger days on the Internet. Great entry, thanks for sharing.

michaelfox
  • michaelfox

I think you have pay more attention on responsibility. For example, you can turn to do my homework for me service, and get more free time for working.

online
  • online

I am looking here to share the amazing device for window users here the some tips to getting you and create the full process to connect add printer windows 10 some one people plug in the computer and start by the USB cable this device so find the latest version for your system.

nisan
  • nisan

Interesting to read this article and this video is well described the content.I'm looking forward to this type of article.The article is quite different from any other article I had seen.Thanks for this informative article keep sharing more articles.https://hotel-metropole.com

Mesi
  • Mesi

Hi. This is very great content. I really impressed with this. keep posting. Thanks for sharing it with us.
ZeroWater savings

wiatmppgryar
  • wiatmppgryar

Snooki, JWoww along with Yeezy-Clad Pauly Deborah Get back together throughout Manchester pertaining to ‘Jersey Shore’ Click Morning

Adidas Tubular Sale Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, Jennifer “JWoww” Farley along with DJ Pauly Deborah most moved for you to Manchester before premiere involving “Jersey Banks: Family holiday, ” which in turn airs this specific Thurs night (The spring 5) in 10 s. mirielle. ET in MTV, Adidas Really Improve Uncaged and you'll gamble that they built a new affirmation. Hopping via spot for a position right now, your trio made brains throughout elegant ensembles even though exposing his or her particular person variations in distinct spots throughout the area, which include MTV’s home office plus the Manchester Eyesight Adidas Cloudfoam Ethnic background Shoes.

Adidas NMD R1 Snooki were standing out and about throughout satiny thigh-high shoes or boots used which has a looked at miniskirt and also a corresponding dark-colored button-down tied up with the stomach. Adidas Tubular Shoes The certainty legend, whom presented her very own distinctive line of big house shoes determined by your ex visual appeal for the well known demonstrate, accessorized using tremendous hues and in many cases even bigger hoop diamond earrings. On the other hand, your sneaker designer’s lover throughout criminal offenses, JWoww, dressed in a new complementing dark-colored set full of peep-toe natural leather foot booties. Adidas Nmd Xr1 OG A new dark-colored belted cover retained Farley hot, and also elegant, when they reach a new mobile phone cubicle for a lot of photographs Adidas Natural Boost.

Adidas Really Improve 3. 0 Regarding DJ Pauly Deborah, dark-colored Yeezy Improve 350 v2 tennis shoes concluded the search, which in turn in addition presented a new camouflage produce bomber coat donned over the wine red 1st tee along with bumpy olive natural skinny jeans. Adidas Iniki Runner Boost Snooki, JWoww along with Pauly Deborah in addition satisfied way up using users your Oughout. Okay. ’s “Geordie Shore” solid, which in turn broadcasted a couple of years following massively common MTV demonstrate opened. Along with through the appointment with the MTV home office, Pauly revealed off of the party goes throughout the Yeezy Improve 350 v2 Zebra.

zhen12
  • zhen12

2018 Qingdao Bay Soccer Coach Bayern Training Class 2 was held on the 23rd in the Sino-German Ecological Park.NFL Jerseys This is the first class of the second class to be held in Qingkai. Through the 2017 Bayern coach training basic training class and the first-level training class,NFL Cheap Sports Jerseys 25 sports teachers from all primary and secondary schools in Qingdao participated in the Bayern Secondary Class.

Kevin
  • Kevin

Adidas NMD R1 Snooki were standing out and about throughout satiny thigh-high shoes or boots used which has a looked at miniskirt and also a corresponding dark-colored button-down tied up with the stomach. Adidas Tubular Shoes The certainty legend, whom presented her very own distinctive line of big house shoes determined by your ex visual appeal for the well known demonstrate, accessorized using tremendous hues and in many cases even bigger hoop diamond earrings. On the other hand, your sneaker designer’s lover throughout criminal offenses, JWoww, dressed in a new complementing dark-colored set full of peep-toe natural leather foot booties. Adidas Nmd Xr1 OG A new dark-colored belted cover retained Farley hot, and also elegant, when they reach a new mobile phone cubicle for a lot of photographs Adidas Natural Boost.

mary11
  • mary11

Adidas NMD R1 Snooki were standing out and about throughout satiny thigh-high shoes or boots used which has a looked at miniskirt and also a corresponding dark-colored button-down tied up with the stomach. Adidas Tubular Shoes The certainty legend, whom presented her very own distinctive line of big house shoes determined by your ex visual appeal for the well known demonstrate, accessorized using tremendous hues and in many cases even bigger hoop diamond earrings. On the other hand, your sneaker designer’s lover throughout criminal offenses, JWoww, dressed in a new complementing dark-colored set full of peep-toe natural leather foot booties. Adidas Nmd Xr1 OG A new dark-colored belted cover retained Farley hot, and also elegant, when they reach a new mobile phone cubicle for a lot of photographs Adidas Natural Boost.

asd
  • asd

“I was not looking to get the commissioner to embarrass himself. And I certainly wasn’t looking to embarrass myself or this network. I simply wanted answers to difficult questions. And so the beginning part of that interview was not me grandstanding. It was me emotional and bothered, and then the first question I asked him, he won’t answer it. He won’t give me a yes or no answer. And then when he does answer it, the thing that he says I know to not be true. And that’s where it escalated. He thought I was just a radio gasbag. He did not think that I actually knew and had facts.”

Whether he was intending to embarrass Manfred or not (which I truly don’t believe that was his intent and that he was simply pushing back on a purposely opaque interview subject) it’s all how MLB perceives it and what pressure they put on ESPN to handle it in a public way in the aftermath.

genxovxxixup
  • genxovxxixup

NEW YORK -- Sean Newcomb has long been regarded as the kind of pitcher who might someday become a frontline starter on a contending team. On Wednesday night at Citi Field, "someday" seemed awfully soon, as the young left-hander pitched like an ace for a first-place team. Newcomb pitched a gem, tossing seven brilliant innings and helping the Braves blank the Mets, 7-0. View Full Game Coverage Thanks to the best game of Newcomb's young career, Atlanta now finds itself in

Carolina Emory
  • Carolina Emory

The well-done biography will without a doubt give me a chance to locate the better than average working spot. I would rather austin mobile homes as then I'll have higher opportunities to get the bit of property of the high quality.

Carol
  • Carol

Thanks for the eye opening post. I would love to share this to my friends. Visit http://onlinecasinohex.ca/ for more interesting topics to read about.

Leave a Comment

Please enter the word you see in the image below: