OT: Archiving data/video/movies/photos/oral history

From: William Donzelli <aw288_at_osfn.org>
Date: Sat Jun 3 21:00:00 2000

> How many KIDS today are collecting LPs? And how many of their
> children will collect them?

Lots more than you think! Of course, many more will start collecting when
they get older.

> I believe the number of people
> interested in old stuff (78 RPMs, LPs, CDs, etc...) will
> decrease exponentially to one, and when he dies, thats IT!

No, not at all. The multi-billion dollar antiques market say "no". A
certain number of people will always like the past and support it.
> In 100 years, CDs and players will be antiques, like Edison's
> aluminum foil recording system. They will be on display in museums,
> but probably not in working condition.

A few will work, and that's what counts.

> CDs have a limited lifetime,
> (10 years IIRC), before they degrade to the point of being unreadable.

Don't tell tell any of my CD's that! I have quite a few oldies - first
generation pressings from the mid-1980s - and they work just as well
today as they did when pressed. To add to that, my CD player is also a
old type (remember the Index feature on CDs? I've only run across two CDs
that use them) with a far less stable tracking mechanism,but they track
and play just fine.

The bit about CDs dying prematuring is a bunch of balloon juice. While by
no means a great archival solution, they are remarkably stable when
treated properly.

> CDs that are being used degrade much faster due to scratches.

That is a fault of the users. CDs are actually very easy to keep
scratch-free, but it does take some discipline (like using the jewel
boxes that way they were designed).

> The
> information stored on the discs won't be interesting enough in ten
> years to copy to alternate media except for a 'small, almost religious,
> group'. When they die off, the information is trapped in a unusable
> format until your grad students build a reader.

The 'small, religious groups' are also remarkably long-lived, and
actually have professional associations and such. They know the problems
with old media, and are actually doing work on it.

William Donzelli
Received on Sat Jun 03 2000 - 21:00:00 BST

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