The Longest Now


Archive.org and mixed messages
Sunday January 23rd 2005, 2:15 am
Filed under: %a la mod

 Archive.org is one of the great organizations around.  They aim to
provide pure services, aren’t afraid of trying out new and daring
projects for improving public access to information, and stand for all
of the right ideals of openness and advancement through sharing.

But they seem to suffer from quirks like any other organization; they
have a confusing and complicated website, which has only grown more
confusing since two years ago, when I recall giving up trying to use it
to find out what I wanted to know about their content archives. 
Today I tried to upload some audio file to the site, and found that
their project nomenclautre was as inconsistent and
confusing [was I uploading “live music”?  No.  But that was
the only link I had to follow for information on uploads], and their
changing color schemes and profusion of navbar-like elements as
distracting, as ever…


Joi
tried to explain how easy it is to upload content to archive.org :

[once you have created an account on the site and logged in]
just ftp to audio-uploads.archive.org 
[logging in with your email address and password from the website]
mkdir the name of the file without the extension
cd to it
upload it
then go to uploading a file from your
machine to a remote machine using a browser, is neatly handled by the
two-step “Browse…” form with which every Windows user and most web
users are familiar.

So I want to know how this could be allowed to happen?  How can
all of the brilliant people who I know both visit 
archive.org often,
know its developers and supporters, have excellent design sense… how
can these people let the site slouch around in its current state of
confusion?


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