One of the catalysts that prompted the creation of
Treasures of the Internet
is to provide an alternative to the mindset and situation of the information industry, as exemplified by the "dot.com" mania during the late 1990's.
A brief discussion of the mindset and situation of the information industry is presented in the Why this page? section. [More of this soapbox is touched below.]
Instead of providing comprehensive internet links on specific topics covered, as many other internet archives and directories attempt to do, we decided to be more selective, so that the most reliable internet sources are emphasized in the directories of the various topics archived. Specifically, we focused on providing internet links of sites from academic, research and "official" institutions whenever available. [However, while not given as much priority, we have not excluded "dot com" sites entirely, as alternatives, if we feel that they are credible and stable.]
This selectivity was done primarily so that the information included herein should be as accurate and as up-to-date as possible so that they would even be suitable as resource for academic (educational) purposes, at any school level. The sites chosen are updated regularly, usually by dedicated staff and reviewed by specialists in the field.
Furthermore, by being selective, the sites chosen were generally stable and well-establish sites. This minimizes your visits to "dead sites" -- one of the most frustrating aspects of exploring the internet. However, as you may have already experienced, the internet is in state of flux, "dead sites" cannot be avoided altogether in the pages of
Treasures of the Internet
Fortunately, we can afford to be selective because there are many good internet sites out there, in almost any field of endeavor. Specifically, we focused on providing internet links from academic, research and "official" institutions whenever available, for reasons already discussed above.
Many of these "treasures of the internet" chosen for inclusion in the archive are accessible without any charge and without those annoying and intrusive advertisements found in many "dot.com" sites.
Listing priority. The above criteria were applied in deciding the priority of listing the archived internet sites. Therefore, instead of using an alphabetical listing, as many archived sites do, the internet sites were ranked, based on quality, accuracy of the content as well as stability of the sites.
The quality and accuracy of the content was deemed especially critical in the health topics* section, where incorrect or dated information can have grave repercussions. In general, we tended to eliminate many "dot.com" sites also in the health topics because of potential conflict of interests that may occur between the site mission and their advertisers. Newspapers and other mass media were generally excluded also in the linked sites.
Search Engines. More often than not, however, you will not find many of these internet gems at the top of your search results, when using a commercial search engine. Quite often, the internet sites themselves do not agressively promote their sites, as many "dot.com" sites would do.
There are other reasons -- some very sinister -- why you do not find these gems of the internet at the top of your search results. Partly, these were due to the mindset of the information industry during the "dot.com" mania. In their race to stake a claim to their internet territory, there was rampant invasion of privacy, commercialization of personal information, misrepresentation of information and many more that are quite disturbing. [Visit the Why this page? section for further discussion of these issues.]
Many of the "dot.coms" did not even have the decency to ask our permission, they just got in (into our computers, through "cookies" and other means). And, if we try to thwart them, they outsmart us and find a way around it.
Basically, from the point of view of the "dot.com" industry, we ceased to be human beings, but commercial commodities (source of information that can be sold to others) as well as mere consumers of products that they want to sell us.
Collectively, we just stood by and let them rape us. Only a few Quixotic voices tried to warn us of the dangers; but we ignored and treated them as the boys who cried wolf. We were so enamored ourselves by the offer of free emails, free websites and other come ons of the "dot.coms" that we never felt the hurt of being ravaged.
The price of "free" has indeed been costly -- the very essence of our humanity.
* N.B. While I am not a physician, I have sufficient background in agriculture, science and biomedical research to be able to give adequate evaluation of the health topics and science sections, so far included in the pages of
Why this page?