archiving as opposed to backing up

From: Ashley Carder <>
Date: Wed Sep 22 21:28:28 2004

> On Wed, 22 Sep 2004, Teo Zenios wrote:
> > To me archives should be made up of just the important stuff,
> if we didn't
> > find it important enough to save it, people 1000 years from now
> will think
> > it is even less important. Who wants to dig through a trillion
> pictures of
> > everyone's pre school finger paintings in an archive our parents put
> > together 1000 years from now?

Sellam > Well, I for one would be beyond thrilled to see pictures of people
Sellam > places and things from 1000 years ago.

I have to throw in my two cents worth here too. I find it quite fascinating
to be able to see and feel and touch things from long ago. I have a lock of
hair from my dad's first haircut around 1930. I have his little shoes from
when he was a baby. I have many letters written by my great great great
grandmother to her family back in Virginia after she moved to Iowa and
lived among the buffalo and native Americans in the 1840s. I have old
photographs of family members from the 1870s. I have the tools my great
grandfather used back in the 1800s. I play old fiddle tunes on the same
fiddle that my great grandfather and his uncle were fiddling on from the
1850s to the 1930s. I have my grandfather's school papers and books from
1910-1915. All of these things tell a story of those who came before us
and give us the personal view into their lives, especially the old letters
that tell what they ate, what kind of flowers and vegetables they planted,
the fact that the women complained about how men didn't have any use for
vegetables until they were cooked and on their plate (in 1870), and lots
of other stuff. I have repaired my dad's toy trains from the 1930s
and I run them at Christmas and the modern small kids still marvel
at them and like to press the button that makes the whistle blow. When
I was in my 20s a few decades ago, I wrote down all the stories that the
old folks told me about our families back years ago.

Does everyone care about this stuff? No. Do I care? Yes. I will find a
worthy person a generation or two after me to pass it on to (hopefully!).

I guess that's why I am working to rebuild an old computer system. It's
a way to preserve something fascinating from my past and hopefully have
it available to anyone who might be interested in knowing what the
academic computer world was like in the 1970s.

The past, the present, and the future are all part of one continuous,
never ending story. It's up to us to preserve things for those who
come after us. It's up to those who come after us to determine what
they are interested in from the things we leave.

I suppose I've rambled again......
Received on Wed Sep 22 2004 - 21:28:28 BST

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