(July 28, 2014) -- For many of us, perusing favorite corners of the Internet is a daily ritual, and sometimes we find these sites wearing new coats of paint. Websites are constantly evolving and replacing their content -- but once a site is updated, is all that old content gone forever?
Not at UTSA. The university has positioned itself to be on the forefront of a new archival trend -- ensuring that past iterations of the university's websites are not lost and forgotten.
Charged with curating the university's online history, UTSA Libraries Special Collections maintains a list of official and UTSA-related websites. These sites are then captured and preserved for public access and research as part of the University Archives collections.
In 2009, Special Collections realized the importance of documenting the Web and became an early adopter of Archive-It, an online tool that tracks and captures websites. Using Archive-It, Special Collections captures UTSA websites biannually after each fall and spring semester.
After being carefully curated by Special Collections, previous website iterations are available for full access on the Wayback Machine, the Archive-It online portal for viewing page captures through time.
The UTSA online archive contains hundreds of sites ranging from academic departments, student organizations and university administration. Student organizations such as PRSSA, The Paisano and the American Society of Civil Engineering chronicle their organizations through their social media outlets, which Special Collections also tracks and archives.
The earliest record of UTSA's website is from 1996, when the Wayback Machine was first created by Archive-It as an archive for the Internet. At this time, online archiving was still rudimentary and only able to capture snapshots of text and photos. This later caused issues for researchers and archivists because sites weren't accurately stored.
"The Internet can be a messy place, but we are doing everything we can to preserve this important online content that documents UTSA's Web presence," said Julianna Barrera-Gomez, university archivist. "In order to thoroughly capture data, you have to get intimate with these websites; you have to know how they are made."
Learn more at the UTSA Libraries website. Special Collections also collects websites from groups outside of UTSA such as San Antonio Organizations, Mexican Cooking Blogs, Renewable Energy in Texas and many more. See the UTSA Archive-It page for a complete list of all the websites being archived and visit Special Collections' The Top Shelf for more information.
The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus
This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus
Graduate student uses storytelling to highlight important issues facing children
As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.
At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.
Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.
With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.
Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.