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The dangers of an indelible life

As part of my attempt at a hack to find deleted webpages from the wayback machines I wrote a query to dbpedia (wikipedia made semantic webby) to ask for all current UK MPs, their DOB and the URL of their Alma Mater.

Turns out that wasn’t very interesting as they were almost all too old to have been at university at the time of the first webpages.



I ran the data through a spreadsheet and got a nice curve, at least. Clearly the next election will be a different story. Looking at the graph above the MPs at uni. after 1995ish will shift from 20 to 60, so multiply 60 by the average number who stand for each seat.

Except the Internet archive only allows “prefix” searches, and they *currently* store URLs as so I can search for an exact website by prefix, but not * However they are looking into storing & indexing URLs as which would allow me to construct a magic search for “Gordon Brown” AND “pissed” on deleted pages from his university at the time he was there.

All in all this means that we’ll have to start accepting that teenagers do dumb stuff, and that the odd youtube movie or teenage angst blog post doesn’t make you bad leader material. (being squeaky clean your entire life implies a scary personality type!)

However, in the short term, we’ll be seeing some political casualties as investigative hackers go see what they can find.

So I say vote for leaders based on what they do and say as adults, not based on the mistakes they made in their teens now indelibly etched on the permascroll.

Posted in Internet Archive.

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Continuing the Discussion

  1. Southampton ECS Web Team › Studying the MPs linked to this post on December 10, 2010

    […] the graph of MP’s birth-decade I did earlier in the year, I used a dbpedia relationship which gave me a nice little subject […]

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