The End of Cyber-History (My Small Part Of It, Anyway)
I've been publishing Ghost Sites of the Web since the Summer of 1996, and it's been a great ride. But as live forces its changes upon us, we must adapt. This year, I've gone through two tragedies that have completely altered my life. Both my beloved mother and sister committed suicide earlier this year. I will probably spend the rest of my life trying to understand how this could happen, faulting myself for failing to prevent it. One can only try to move through such an experience on a day by day basis, and try to keep moving, because depression, it's said, "has a hard time hitting a moving target."
As I survey the range of my current online activities, and weigh the costs of carrying them forward against the benefits they have granted me, I have realized that I do not have the resources required to responsibly maintain all the various content areas of Ghost Sites, so I am moving the Museum of Interactive Failure, the Pathfinder Museum, and the Netslaves Archive off line to a ruggedized 1 Terabyte disk. I have made plans for these files to be donated to a historical institution sometime after my own death, which I hope is still many years away.
I will keep updating Ghost Sites, because I enjoy having a Blog wherein I can comment on contemporary developments on the Internet with an eye to their historical context, and I've met some good people here. Among the best of them is Morbus, whose unique talents have created the sprawling zone of "content for the discontented" that constitutes Disobey.com.
One in a blue moon, some of the historical data I've gathered might even make it back on the online. But I think it is time that I retire some of the old material, which will give me more time and mental space to stay in touch with joyful living in the real world, and less time facing the solemn issue of death in the virtual world, which I hope I've covered to the Internet's satisfaction for the past dozen years. If you'd like to check up on my current activities, please check out my other site, BrooklynParrots.com. I don't know how much you know about wild Quaker Parrots, but I've found that watching them is a sure fire cure for sadness, and I plan on spending as much of my free time with them as possible for the foreseeable future.
Of course, cleaning up the vast museum of historical cyber-flotsam I've compiled will take a bit of time, and this process might be messy. Please forgive any 404 "File Not Found" and/or broken image errors you might encounter here in the next few weeks.They will disappear soon enough, making this site a "clean, well lit place" again.
Who was it that said that "the only thing constant is change?" He or she was certainly correct. Thank you for your support for these many years. I hope to have informed you about the Web's early years, and hope these efforts have enhanced your own appreciation of this extraordinary medium.
Keep on Fetchin'! (for you youngsters who may not understand this statement, "fetchin'" was a popular synomym for FTP'ing back in the early 1990s).
Editor, Ghost Sites of the Web