Inside the Internet Archive
by Doug Roberts

Published: November 04, 2002

Tucked away in one of the seediest neighborhoods of San Francisco is a roomful of over two hundred computers with a terabyte of data stored on every three. Stairs from the street lead up an intimidating hallway that opens into a room with 15-foot ceilings and just-this-side of hip ductwork in the ceiling. To the right is a storage area with a single desk, to the left are Baker’s racks tightly packed with off-the-shelf HP desktop machines, each turned on it’s side to maximize the space. Somewhere in all that ductwork, a fan is squeaking painfully. Walking into this echoey, over-warm warehouse space, it’s easy to be underwhelmed until you realize what you are looking at: spinning away on these computers is nothing less than a copy of the Internet from 1996 until today.

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