[SGVLUG] Mondo Rescue Scripts
laurence at alice.caltech.edu
Fri Oct 14 19:09:29 PDT 2005
On Fri, 14 Oct 2005, Swantje wrote:
> > ehh? dumping photos to a CD isn't "permanent"? Could you expand please?
> > offlist is fine if this is OT.
> Please do it on-list.
I agree, it seems on-topic to me. Not that we really stay on-topic
> I know they're not perfect, but what would be a better solution?
> Last I heard, cheapo disks were not very permanent (2 years?), but brand
> name ones pretty good. And CD-Rs possibly more permanent than CD-RWs.
I suppose that's generally true, but I don't know if I'd want to bet on
how accurate buying by brand is. There is a nice summary on WikiPedia:
It suggests the worst dyes could have a lifetime of "a few years." It
also says that the better discs should be stable for "hundreds of years,"
but as you might guess from the fact that the technology is only about a
decade old that is pure guesswork.
We've discussed this at BC after-hours, and Mike and others are saying
that the movie industry has ended up just using live hard disk arrays as
being as permanent as anything else. I had hopes for magneto-optical
disks, which were supposed to be *very* stable, but they don't seem to
have become practical for archiving (the ever-ballooning amount of data I
want to archive has something to do with this I suppose).
Keep in mind that if the photos aren't important or you won't want them
for more than a few years, probably anything works. But think about the
old family photos that are still usable after a hundred years of total
neglect--I don't think we have digital media that can be trusted to be
anything like that, even before we talk about format lifetime. Then think
about how ungracefully digital formats degrade compared to analog ones....
I hope to scan some old photos from my family that have been totally
neglected for most of a century or even more, and I don't think they would
have survived at all had they been digital. Sobering thought for those of
us becoming dependent on digital photography. I've heard a recommendation
to make sure you print the best ones, and I suppose that's the best idea
if your printer inks have real pigments. It's sort of a conversion back
to analog, really, since a faded or discolored print would still be
useable just as with actual photographs.
I don't think we really know how all this is going to work out--however,
at least there is a constituency working on it, the movie industry,
librarians, and historians for starters.
More information about the SGVLUG