asset management - help :-)

From: Jules Richardson <>
Date: Mon Nov 8 13:31:55 2004

On Mon, 2004-11-08 at 10:57 -0800, Vintage Computer Festival wrote:
> On Mon, 8 Nov 2004, Jules Richardson wrote:
> > What I'm puzzling over is how to record any relationship between
> > hardware / software / documentation, or even to what extent any
> > relationship needs to be recorded. Thoughts on this would be most
> > appreciated, and I wonder what other museums do...
> Many museums simply give one accession number to an entire lot that gets
> donated. So if a computer comes in with it's monitor, disk drives,
> software and manuals, that's given one accession number and one database
> entry.
> Me personally, I started documenting every last bit of hardware, software
> and documentation I had, and giving each it's own record. I would then
> link them to a "parent" record by way of a simple pointer to the other
> record, and vice versa.

Yep, that does seem the sensible way to go. And as Alex said, the parent
record can hold details of where an item came from (I want to capture
where stuff goes to as well - we'll dispose of surplus items to good
homes every so often and that'd be a useful thing to know so that
related stuff that may turn up can be passed on too)

> It depends on how detailed you want to get. I'm an info spaz

Me too - I just want to make sure it doesn't take someone else hours to
enter new data as and when things are donated, as I won't be the only
one filling in entries :) Personally I'd rather have more information
and never need it than not enough, though.

Taking a wild guess I'd estimate that we have in the order of a thousand
systems though, so that's one hell of a backlog to catch up on! That's
without all the boards, software, docs etc. that need looking through

Given that, a phased approach is probably needed where only the minimum
of data needs entering initially, with a seperate process to flag
incomplete records for future completion.

> Let's say I have a boxed Commodore 64. I would enter that as a Commodore
> 64 and then include either in the notes or in a special database field
> whether the item includes it's original packaging. Power supplies and
> such I would not give separate entries unless warranted (like, say, the
> power distribution cabinet of an IBM mainframe).

That'd be my preference too. My only worry is situations like finding an
oddball lead sitting around and having no idea what machine it's for -
which means it can't be put away with its machine, which in turn means
it sits around for years or worse still gets chucked as being useless.
(In reality I'd end up posting a photo here if I didn't know what it
was, and I wouldn't leave it on the side in the first place - but not
all people are me :-)


Received on Mon Nov 08 2004 - 13:31:55 GMT

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