Wayback Machine Presentation

The Wayback Machine Presentation

In order to work towards building your public speaking skills, I want you to do a 1-2 minute presentation for this unit. For this assignment I want you to choose a website that you find valuable, useful, or interesting. (This might be a great place to explore your Hidden Intellectualism!) With that choice, visit the Wayback Machine @ www.waybackmachine.org. Spend time seeing how the website has changed over time. Once you have a sense, I want you to put together a presentation that accomplishes the following:

  1. Visit http://www.waybackmachine.org to find an example of a website.
  2. Once you have an example, find 2-4  “snapshots” of it over the years to represent how the website has changed.
  3. After you have your 2-4 snapshots, note how your example changes over the years:
    • In what ways does the website mimic conventional print media in the early years?
    • Does this mimicking of conventional print media seem to change over the years?
    • In what ways does the website change to become more interactive? Or doesn’t it?
    • Why do you think this change to interactivity happens (or doesn’t!)? Is it because of the technology or because of the human communication?
  4. Some other questions to address:
    • Describe the website and what it does. (Purpose)
    • Describe the significant changes (Format)
    • Did the changes help the website better accomplish its purpose and convey its content? (Rhetoric/Argument)
    • What year did the website go online?
    • What layout did they use?
      1. Fonts, pictures, colors, etc.
    • Does purpose and format match?
      1. Does it differ?
    • Does the way it evolved help it’s purpose? How so?
      1. Does it hurt? How so?
  5. Upload your screenshots to the Presentation forum. You can use them during your presentation.

Remember to keep it between 1-3 minutes; this means you will have to carefully plan how you use your time effectively during the presentation. You do not have to address every question. Your ultimate objective is to create an argument about how well the format of the website (and those changes over time) effects the purpose or objective of the website. Use the questions to come to your own interpretation. You will be evaluated using the Presentation Rubric found on coursesite.

Adapted from: Marcy Leasum Orwig’s “That Looks Weird”:
Analyzing the Rhetoric and Technology of Websites Over Time with Critical Genre Awareness
Kairos 22.1 (2017)