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[whitespace] www.archaeologica.com

Digging the Web

By Rob Pratt


A FEW MONTHS AGO, former PC Week editor and top-dollar new-media consultant Sam Whitmore told a small group of Santa Cruz techies that meta-media is the hottest thing online right now. Meta-media sites, like the ultrahip [Inside] (www.inside.com) and Webby-winner Jim Romenesko's Media News (www.poynter.org/medianews), don't just report the news. They collect reports on the news and then report on how news organizations present the important events of the day. Such is the organizing principle of Archaeologica (www.archaeologica.org), a site headquartered in the San Lorenzo Valley that looks at currents in archaeology.

The site presents a fascinating day-by-day collection of archaeology-related news from around the world (sample headlines: "Leonardo da Vinci May Have Fathered a Son" and "Scholar Claims to Find Secret to Alexander's Tomb"), as well as related links and a link to a discussion forum. With each day's headlines appended to the top of the news page--which contains every news-story link since the site's launch in early July--one of the most interesting parts of the site is slow to load and difficult to read. A current week of headlines, with links to archived weeks deeper in the site, and an alternate by-topic sort of the headlines would make finding information on specific issues much easier and might make the site more compelling for visitors with only a casual interest in archaeology.

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From the August 30-September 6, 2000 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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