You can stick a bi-weekly abridgement in a binder and apprehend it in 50 years. Not so with agenda content: both the media AND the architecture can become unreadable. With so abundant of the world’s abstracts – and castigation – in agenda form, added bodies wonder: how do I accumulate my pictures, music, videos, abstracts and added about for decades? Here’s how.
The able mindset Your abstracts is valuable. Accumulator is cheap. Scrimping on accommodation to save a few bucks is silly. If money is a absolute problem, plan to archetype your best important abstracts first. In a few months, back accumulator is cheaper, buy some more.
Remember, you will anon balloon about the amount of the storage, but you may never absolve yourself for accident irreplaceable ancestors or acknowledged files.
One word, my friend: copies Neatness is one of the best accepted causes of abstracts loss. You get the new alien drive – or worse, RAID arrangement – archetype aggregate to it and again annul the originals. The drive or arrangement goes south – and your abstracts goes with it.
A RAID arrangement is NOT a acting for a abstracts archive. RAID arrays breach and all too generally a distinct aberration – oops, pulled the amiss disk! – and your abstracts is gone forever.
Cheap optical disks can boring clutter your data. Hard drives crash. Even if your abstracts is readable, if your appliance can’t apprehend it you are still out of luck.
Unnecessary neatness Instead of “everything in its abode and a abode for everything” you appetite “every affair in every place.” The best action is several copies beyond altered media, finer in altered locations.
Storage is cheap. Use lots.
Privacy and encryption Encryption is a acceptable abstraction alone if you apperceive you can bethink a countersign for 10 years. Otherwise use concrete aegis – bound doors – rather than encryption. Also, encryption is an application: are you abiding that app will be about in 10 years?
If you charge encrypt, you are acceptable bigger off with a free, open-source apparatus like TrueCrypt. Or analysis out 10 chargeless accessible antecedent encryption utilities.
A bigger bet than encryption for best of us: save abstracts assimilate dual-layer DVDs – 8GB anniversary – and abundance in a safe drop box. Acceptable density, aerial bandwidth and a adversity advanced location.
Data and media formats Once you buy into the assorted archetype action you are accessible to accede the abutting issues. The aboriginal botheration is acrimonious abstracts formats for best longevity. A book architecture is adumbrated by the book extension, such as .doc or .pdf, that follows the book name.
Documents For abstracts simple formats are best. An aboriginal archetype printed on acceptable quality, acid-free cardboard will aftermost the longest and be clear by anyone.
Text formats are best for agenda documents. ASCII argument – from programs like Notebook or TextEdit – has been about for decades. Argument files don’t bottle circuitous formatting or graphics, but if it is agreeable you appetite to bottle – like the book of my great-grandmother’s Civil War belletrist – apparent argument files are acceptable to be clear 100 years from now.
If you charge bottle formatting Rich Argument Architecture (.rtf) abstracts are acceptable to be clear for a brace of decades. RTF is a Microsoft conception that uses text-based formatting – akin to HTML – that is almost accessible to decode.
If attention formatting, cartoon and images is important, the Portable Document Architecture (PDF) is today’s best bet. Now an ISO standard, PDF account and autograph software can be developed after royalties to Adobe. The downside is that Adobe keeps abacus appearance to their PDF software – Acrobat – which could actualize affinity issues bottomward the road.
Audio The MP3 architecture is the best bet for the continued haul. MP3 is broadly accurate and playable on best every media player.
The iTunes built-in AAC architecture can be adapted to MP3 by right-clicking and selecting “create MP3” in the contextual card (I don’t own iTunes music, so that may not assignment with DRM’d AAC files).
When ripping, save to the accomplished MP3 affection – 320 kbps – that few aerial can acquaint from uncompressed. Takes a little added amplitude today, but in year you won’t apprehension the difference. Accumulator is cheap.
Pictures There aren’t any absolute solutions for pictures. Portable Network Cartoon (PNG – arresting “ping”) is lossless and apparently the best bet, but it doesn’t accept the widest software support. If the pictures are absolutely important, book on acid-free cardboard with colorant inks and abundance in a cool, dry and aphotic place.
Avoid appliance proprietary formats from apps such as Photoshop, Illustrator or Autodesk. Those files are specialized and appliance dependent: no app, no picture.
Video Video is tough: none of the agenda formats accept been about that long; the book sizes are large; and creating copies non-trivial. I aftermath videos, but for this I batten to an expert.
A 100,000 hour video annal I batten to Sam Gustman, the Chief Technology Officer of the USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Beheld History and Education. The Foundation Archive
. . . contains about 52,000 beheld history testimonies of survivors and added assemblage of the Holocaust videotaped in 56 countries and in 32 languages.
They accept over 100,000 hours of video on 235,000 tapes. Taping started some 20 years ago, so they’ve been ambidextrous with the media and architecture issues for years.
USCSF is appointment all their aboriginal tapes – abounding in now-obsolete formats like BetaSP and VHS – to the 75Mbit motionJPEG2000 format. MJPEG2000 is the architecture called by the Library of Congress and is the base for architecture acclimated in the Agenda Cinema Initiative. Translation: it has massive dollars and agreeable repositories abaft it.
In accession they are additionally authoritative copies of all tapes in 5Mbit MPEG-2, Flash, QuickTime and Windows Media. The closing are heavily aeroembolism for confined over the web and dispersing copies to added sites.
The complete annal requires 8,000 Terabytes of accommodation on 2 high-end Sun StorageTek band silos – anniversary costing about actor bucks. Every 3 years they archetype aggregate to new tapes to ensure preservation.
They additionally advance a set of tapes at an offsite athenaeum in Pennsylvania – aloof in case the Big One hits LA.
Update: For added about alluring media see The alarm tolls for your alluring media by Jason Perlow. End update.
What should you do? The basal abstraction is the aforementioned for claimed video content: accomplish 2 copies; accumulate them in altered places; use a accepted format; and plan on authoritative copies every few years.
Some specific tips:
What does Robin do? I advance 3 advancement systems on my multi-terabyte Mac Pro: alternate Time Machine book backups; circadian Carbon Archetype Cloner runs for bootable backups; and an offsite billow backup. I alter disks at 3 years of age or sooner.
I additionally accomplish DVDs with completed video projects for archive. Never acclimated them, achievement I never will, but there they are.
The Accumulator Bits booty We’re active in a agenda age. Maintaining agenda abstracts is added circuitous than afraid cardboard in a book folder. But the rewards – accessible search, massive capacity, multi-formats – are account it.
Comments welcome, of course.
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