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Blog Archive for the ‘Digital Dark Age’ Category

New Book Explores the Legacy of Paul Otlet’s Mundaneum

by Charlotte Hajer on September 23rd, 02014

In 02007, SALT speaker Alex Wright introduced us to Paul Otlet, the Belgian visionary who spent the first half of the twentieth century building a universal catalog of human knowledge, and who dreamed of creating a global information network that would allow anyone virtual access to this “Mundaneum.” In June of this year, Wright released…  Read More

Retrocomputing Brings Warhol’s Lost Digital Art Back to Life

by Catherine Borgeson on May 16th, 02014

In 01985, Andy Warhol used an Amiga 1000 personal computer and the GraphiCraft software to create a series of digital works. Warhol’s early computer artworks are now viewable after 30 years of dormancy. Commodore International commissioned Warhol to appear at the product launch and produce a few public pieces showing off the Amiga’s multimedia capabilities….  Read More

ICE/ISEE-3 To Return To An Earth No Longer Capable of Speaking To It

by Charlotte Hajer on February 24th, 02014

This August, a pioneer in space exploration returns to Earth after more than 30 years of service. The spacecraft is still in good, functioning condition, and could possibly be assigned to another mission. Sadly, however, we seem to have forgotten how to speak its language. The probe, a collaboration between NASA and ESA, was one…  Read More

Laura Welcher Speaks at Contemporary Jewish Museum This Sunday

by Charlotte Hajer on February 13th, 02014

How do public archives, as collections of cultural artifacts, shape our collective memory? And how is this changing as new digital tools make it ever easier for scholars and artists to access these repositories? This Sunday, Long Now’s Laura Welcher joins a group of archivists and artists to discuss these questions and more at the…  Read More

Lost century-old Antarctic images found and conserved

by Catherine Borgeson on January 10th, 02014

Photo: Antarctic Heritage Trust (NZ) A small box of 22 exposed but unprocessed photographic negatives left nearly a century  ago in an Antarctic exploration hut has been discovered and conserved by New Zealand’s Antarctic Heritage Trust. “It’s the first example that I’m aware of, of undeveloped negatives from a century ago from the Antarctic heroic…  Read More

Reviving and Restoring Lost Sounds

by Catherine Borgeson on December 26th, 02013

In 02008 Kevin Kelly called for movage (as opposed to storage) as the only way to archive digital information: “Proper movage means transferring the material to current platforms on a regular basis— that is, before the old platform completely dies, and it becomes hard to do. This movic rythym of refreshing content should be as…  Read More

The Cure for Broken Links and Dead Dot-Coms

by Catherine Borgeson on November 1st, 02013

“The Internet echoes with the empty spaces where data used to be.” – Alexis Rossi from the Wayback Machine The Internet Archive recently unveiled a new plan to fix broken links utilizing the Wayback Machine. The Wayback Machine provides digital captures of URLs to create stable access to websites that otherwise might vanish. The service…  Read More

Toward a Manual for Civilization

by Austin Brown on August 14th, 02013

“We are as gods” because of our ancestors’ diligence. The promise of a technologically advancing future is predicated on millennia of accumulated knowledge. Civilization has taken a lot of work to build and it demands a great deal of know-how to sustain. And as modern life increasingly encourages specialization, familiarity across that accumulated knowledge’s breadth…  Read More

Art & The Art of Archiving at New York’s New Museum

by Charlotte Hajer on August 12th, 02013

From July 17 to September 8 of this year, the New Museum on Manhattan’s Lower East Side is hosting XFR STN (read ‘transfer station’), an “open-door artist-centered media archiving project.” A collaborative effort by artists for artists, XFR STN is essentially a preservation and migration service for artwork created with or on audiovisual and digital…  Read More

A New Dimension (or Two?) for Long-Term Data Storage

by Charlotte Hajer on July 26th, 02013

A group of scientists at the University of Southampton is pushing the frontier of long-term data storage technology to a new level. At a recent Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics in San José, the researchers announced their success at recording data in quartz glass by using a femtosecond laser. A femtosecond, or ultrafast, laser sends…  Read More