Thursday, November 03, 2011

Robots and Archives

The archival corollary to "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" would be "Who digitally copies the digital copies?" As we digitally images our manuscripts, we must ask how will we be maintain the digital images as they become more prolific than the originals? DVD images may become corrupt as soon as 20 years or may last considerably longer. The US Library of Congress has risen to task of copying their materials with robots. In the Time Magazine video below, the inventor of the system discusses his system which copies video media en masse.


  1. The link below, gives some additional data for the archive life of Cd and DVD disks.

    Philips, back in the 1990s made a fine grade CD disk with platinum and organic dyes, but these are now unavailable. Indeed, it is best to purchase high quality disks, which at least make the claim that they are of high archival quality. I often inspect the disks with a 10x lens which can reveal much, such as the quality of the protective seal coatings. Good news, is that there are a number of softwares available which can extract some data from damaged DVD and CD Blu-ray, disks (such as Copy Cat, Abyssmal, etc) many are free tools! At least some of the data may be rescued!
    Certainly numerous backups are mandatory, as well as proper handling and storage! Such a state of affairs presents a good argument for making manuscript images (of high quality) freely downloadable to any all interested parties. This dissemination itself assists with the long term preservation! Think about it, if a high quality image has been downloaded and saved by thousands of viewers, worldwide, then its survival is enhanced.
    Glad to read of such concerns on this interesting Blog, keep it up.
    Mr. Gary S. Dykes

  2. Actually it was RICOH, not Philips who made the Platinum disks.
    Mr Dykes