Financial News

  • 12 March 2014, 14:06

The Way We WWWere: Websites Then And Now

Stark backgrounds, cluttered pages and awkward navigation - websites of the past look completely different to today's slick pages.

These glimpses of the internet's history are still available online, a digital library showcasing the aesthetics of yesteryear.

The Wayback Machine website automatically "crawls" homepages on a regular basis, capturing how a site looked at a particular moment in time.

The Google homepage of 1998 has now been stripped back, and the cartoon-style logo is polished.

Apple's cluttered homepage from 1997 has now been replaced by large images and tighter lines of text.

The Wayback Machine shows a simpler time, when web pages had to be fairly basic due to the constraints of slow download speeds.

Toyota's website in 1996 had a light yellow background and a wall of text - but is now bold, dominated by the colour red, and fully interactive.

The once mighty Myspace attracted millions of users before fading then relaunching last year.

Its 2003 homepage is a world away from the page that greets users now.

Sky News' website is now dominated by the latest video, vibrant picture galleries, interactive graphics and breaking news.

But our site in 2005 was a more simple affair.

Even the White House's online presence was once shabby, with a grey-dominated homepage back in 1996.

Facebook meanwhile is a website used by hundreds of millions of people around the world. Its original design was substantially different - when it was still known as TheFacebook.

With the speed of change on the web, it's a strong bet that in 10 years' time, we'll look back on the current crop of homepages with a wry smile.

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