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Data Preservation


Data Preservation

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Jim P.
Jim P.
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Then there is a question of what really needs to be retained.

In the past I was the responsible archivist for financial data, including mortgage payments. So the way the law is currently crafted is that you need to maintain the last seven years of data for IRS purposes, but technically had to delete the data older than seven years (plus 30) from mortgages that had paid off. I came up with a CD/DVD system that had the zip software of the backup and a copy of the SQL Server installs in use at the time. The application wasn't there, but the data was.

That was after I had to do a tape search of loans we had done in Georgia, over five years earlier, that was an abysmal failure.

I swore that I would never leave myself or my successors over such a large abyss ever again.

But sometimes I think of Jeff Atwood's comment of using paper. And if you think of how much history was preserved on papyrus (Dead Sea Scrolls) or stone (the Pyramids) it might not be a horrible idea.



----------------
Jim P.

A little bit of this and a little byte of that can cause bloatware.
David.Poole
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This topics emphasizes that if long term retrieval is a required then this has to be designed in from day one.

I have worked on a project to retrieve data from 7 years worth of backup tapes and it was painful. The backups were designed to protect day-to-day OLTP and not a data warehouse type operation.

Music lost from the 80's and 90's? Playing devil's advocate is that necessarily a bad thing?!?!? If it was any good then it is probably still being played on independent (UK) radio and definitely is by my noisy neighbours!

As to the long term worth.....if you've ever cleaned out your house and brutally got rid of all the things that "might have been useful one day" but somehow never were its amazing how much you don't miss it, or in many cases even remember you had it.

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Gary Varga
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Steve Jones - SSC Editor (12/3/2013)
Gary Varga (12/3/2013)

I have total faith that the digital photos will be convertible because the formats are widely known so, even if it will cost, there will be conversion services or readers available. I think the bigger problem is the vast amount of photos the current generations are producing as I can imagine that more photos are taken on an average night out than my Mum took on our annual holiday (vacation to you overponders ;-)) which accounted for over half the yearly photos taken. Also loss due to services disappearing. How many people back up their Facebook photos?



I actually grab my Facebook stuff every quarter. They make it easy to export, though it's not quick.

Volume is a huge issue. Right now YouTube gets over 24 hours of video every second uploaded. It's not all from me, but I have some up there. I worry about those older videos, those photos, etc. being converted. I suspect there will be services software to do it, but it's not necessarily an easy process. Already I know I have digital and analog video tapes that may be lost since I'm not sure the devices work. I should convert our VHS stuff over now while we can.


There was a large bustle of activity here in the UK when photos went digital with loads of digitising services (if you could afford it).

...Steve you have got to know that it was not people here that I was questioning were backing up their Facebook photos (I am sure you will eventually find that you have some fan who maintains a record of your famous Hawaiian shirts thereby providing a free backup of some of your photos!!!).

Gaz

-- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!
Gary Varga
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David.Poole (12/4/2013)
...Music lost from the 80's and 90's? Playing devil's advocate is that necessarily a bad thing?!?!? If it was any good then it is probably still being played on independent (UK) radio and definitely is by my noisy neighbours!...


I disagree so this may make me a valuable source of late 80s/early 90s UK indie music...along with my Adolescent Radioactive Black-Belt Hamsters comics ;-)

Gaz

-- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!
Steve Jones
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Saw this today as well: http://www.theverge.com/2013/12/4/5173960/70-percent-of-american-silent-films-have-been-lost-study-shows

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David.Poole
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Gary Varga (12/4/2013)


I disagree so this may make me a valuable source of late 80s/early 90s UK indie music...


Indie yes. Stock, Aitkin and Waterman not so much.

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Iwas Bornready
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What a great article, even though it is years old. I have some thinking to do about my pictures.
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http://rosettaproject.org/blog/02008/aug/20/very-long-term-backup/
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If you want to insure that your family photos are passed down forever to your grand children, then consider DNA digital data storage. It's a special gift that will always be with them. Even in the event of a disaster where your family line is cut short, the data can be still be persisted indefinitely, so long as their remains are held in cold, dry and dark conditions.

.. On August 16, 2012, the journal Science published research by George Church and colleagues at Harvard University, in which DNA was encoded with digital information that included an HTML draft of a 53,400 word book written by the lead researcher, eleven JPG images and one JavaScript program. Multiple copies for redundancy were added and 5.5 petabits can be stored in each cubic millimeter of DNA.[4] The researchers used a simple code where bits were mapped one-to-one with bases, which had the shortcoming that it led to long runs of the same base, the sequencing of which is error-prone. This research result showed that besides its other functions, DNA can also be another type of storage medium such as hard drives and magnetic tapes...


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DNA_digital_data_storage


"The universe is complicated and for the most part beyond your control, but your life is only as complicated as you choose it to be."
David.Poole
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The BBC used to reuse tapes because the media used to cost a fortune. Every now and again someone finds a copy of an ancient TV program hidden in their shed.

The problem is that if a medium is reactive enough to record it is reactive enough to degrade. There is a stone cross on the Shropshire/Wales border that originally held a list of historic kings. If it hadn't eroded over time it would give us a clue as to whether King Arthur was Owain Ddantgwyn or a composite character.

In terms of historic loss of photographs I would not mourne the passing of the non-art form known as the selfie

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