Welcome to Project Chronos!
Project Chronos is an effort to retrieve and resurrect fringe and paranormal websites that have died or are otherwise no longer online. The project emphasizes forum content, but all other types of content will be restored as well.
Why are we doing this?
In the earlier days of the internet, there were fewer options to start a community about something fringe/niche. The option to simply start a Facebook group or a YouTube channel simply didn't exist, so building a community around your favorite subject required a bigger investment in time, money and knowledge. One could argue that because of the additional effort it took to create these sites, those popped up around that time tended to attract those with a legitimate passion or interest in their subject.
Most (or all) of what we'll be resurrecting can, of course, be found on Archive.org or similar sites... But only in a very fragmented manner. Forums are rapidly changing sites, so that archived thread you find may not show you the 10 other pages that showed up afterward. There are quite a few other challenges trying to browse this way, but the end result is the same: It's frustrating trying to browse forums on Archive.org, and there's a lot of good stuff there.
With today's technology and the "internet of things" that has evolved, we can now systematically restore these lost ideas and conversations. Over the years, communities come and go, and during their lifetime, thousands of people engage in interesting debates and share provocative ideas. A forum community is the culmination of many minds coming together through a shared love for a particular topic, and we believe that's something worth preserving and sharing.
What's the plan?
The site's we're currently working on are:
We have lists of every URL Archive.org claims to have saved for the above sites (and you can find those in the downloads area). Using those, we've built "searcher databases" to help zero in on the good content, and once identified, that content is automatically pushed to Curious Cosmos.
What initially gets pushed to this site is the title, category, first post and embedded Archive view. That gets things started, visible and somewhat searchable. Over time, those entries will have the rest of their posts moved over as well, and the discussions for those entries will be moved into the main Curious Cosmos forums.
Before that happens, the conversation thread for each entry lives in a "club". From there, anyone is welcome to claim a thread and begin rebuilding the content - Simply visit the club, pick a thread and start posting. Once completed, @Cosmo will change post authors and dates and away it goes.
More information will be added or clarified here as things progress. We're still in the early stages of working out all the wrinkles in our process, so some things may change as needed to make this an efficient process.