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The Web Changes Everything: Understanding the Dynamics of Web Content

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Executive Summary

The Web is a dynamic, ever changing collection of information. This paper explores changes in Web content by analyzing a crawl of 55,000 Web pages, selected to represent different user visitation patterns. Although change over long intervals has been explored on random (and potentially unvisited) samples of Web pages, little is known about the nature of finer grained changes to pages that are actively consumed by users, such as those in the sample. The paper describes algorithms, analyses, and models for characterizing changes in Web content, focusing on both time (by using hourly and sub-hourly crawls) and structure (by looking at page-, DOM-, and term-level changes).

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