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Showing posts with label conservation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label conservation. Show all posts

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Wonderful for access, for posterity, not so much

This is an account of a very exciting project to digitise the AIDS Quilt. However, while this demonstrates the exciting possibilities for access and research opened up through digitisation, there is a very problematic statement by a graduate student studying art conservation about its value for long-term preservation for posterity:
One hundred years from now, when the textiles break down, you can still have the digital effort
Textiles are a great deal more robust than digital media. While we may hope that the necessary steps are taken (and the resources made available) to migrate the digitised records through changes in hardware and software over time, digital records are very ephemeral and may become unreadable within a very short period after creation. The Bayeux Tapestry is still in existence after nearly 1000 years, unlike many computer-generated records of far more recent date.