The Deep Web
Self-Directed Lifelong Learning

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Web search engines are designed to organize lists of web pages according to key words or phrases the user might request. We all use them. We rely on them. For most people, the hyper-popular search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo totally represent the world wide web. They are the web. Or so we are allowed to believe.

The search engines tirelessly "crawl" the web, picking their way through every byte of every website they visit. These "crawlers" provide data that is evaluated and organized according to algorithms that are provide the kind of information that users ordinarily find when they request a search. These algorithms are designed according to criteria set by search-engine programming, and those criteria are sometimes prejudiced by corporate necessities and social whimsies. Strange as it may seem, however, there are actually websites that don't give a flip whether they appear on your search list or not, and there are even more places that send the web crawlers a clear message, "Get out and stay out!"

According to an article in the November 2, 2015, issue of Darkweb News, only 4% of the web is represented by the almighty search engines. This image here of an iceberg illustrate the point. The Visible Web is the "tip of the iceberg" that is accessible to search engines. As  far as most people know, that IS the web.

But what about the 96% of the stuff below the surface--in the Deep Web? In spite of the fact that web crawlers ignore it (or are locked out), most of the sites are wide open to the public. But can you see the problem? With search engines unable to work with the Deep Web, the links have to be located and listed manually, one at at time. Free-Ed.Net (where you are at this moment) is a curator of Deep Web links that enrich the work of self-directed lifelong learners.

Point of Confusion: Deep Web vs Dark Web

A lot of really internet-savvy people are uncharacteristically guilty of confusing ordinary folks with the terms "Deep Web" and "Dark Web." According to Wikipedia:

"The first conflation of the terms "deep web" and "dark web" came about in 2009 when the deep web search terminology was discussed alongside illegal activities taking place on the Freenet darknet [...] a comparison many reject as inaccurate and consequently is an ongoing source of confusion.

"While the deep web is reference to any site that cannot be accessed through a traditional search engine, the dark web is a small portion of the deep web that has been intentionally hidden and is inaccessible through standard browsers and methods."

Free-Ed.Net has a growing number of links that take you into the deep web, but none--ever--that come close to the dark web. Besides, you need a special kind of browser to engage the dark web.

There is a bit of a downside when compiling links to the wealth of science and business information in the deep web: The deep web people aren't morally obliged to announces changes in content and addresses. A link to an awesome psychology resource, for example, can vanish at any moment without warning. That leaves us with a broken link. Please Contact Us if you find a broken link.



David L. Heiserman, Editor

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All Rights Reserved

Revised: June 06, 2015