Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images
Soon I plan to treat myself to a D1X and an F5 (Just because). One of the concerns I have is the long term Storage/Archival of the images that are created via digital photography. I'm talking 5, 10, 20 or more years down the road. I would want these images to be available for my grand kids even great grand kids. This is of course not as much an issue with Film Negatives or Slides. I realize that at a point I will no longer be willing to continually keep up with Computer storage technology to move images from one generation of storage technology to the next (Yes I am middle aged). How do some of you plan on dealing with this issue.
#1. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 0thompson1600 Basic MemberSun 29-Sep-02 11:15 PM
I'm backing everything up on CD-rom. Hopefully even into the not so distant future there will still be the capability of reading from CD-rom. If this changes drastically then I will have to have them transferred to another media type.
#2. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 0blucenturion1 Registered since 09th Sep 2002Mon 30-Sep-02 01:14 AM
There'll be someone who will be glad to have your grandkids drop off your CD's and who will then transfer them to a chip that will feed into their optic nerves. Just think, never having to read another Read Me file again! Can't wait!
#3. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 2archivue Registered since 26th Mar 2002Mon 30-Sep-02 04:12 AM
The real problem being the file format, not so the storage device... Will the Raw, Nef and even jpeg be recognised in the future???
We already have the problem with other archives (vectors based), even when the software still exist, in 10 years it has changed so much it can't read the old files, of course there is always a way - but can you imagine going back and "upgrading" all your archives (10 000 files!).
Happily, I believe that all those big image data groups will have the same problem and have some weight over the softwares makers..
Argentic has the same problem in a sort... years ago I was asked if I could find someone to salvage, print, scan and archive eight millions of glass negatives... It was too much even for the Rochester company !
If classical films really dissapear, the job for the great-great-grandchildren to print them might be to difficult or not cheap enough...
So we are "stuck" in between..
#4. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 3Seb Basic MemberMon 30-Sep-02 12:43 PM
I tend to disagree. Format haven't changed much since the 80s, only a few new ones have been added. The problem here is longevity of the technology and the media. Several studies have concluded that the length a CD will last depends mostly on the hardware used to burn it, and secondly on the media. And the media itself can vary by several years in the same batch from disc to disc. A big factor is the dye used. And the saddest part of all of this is that most of the included with PCs are bottom-of-the-barrel quality wise.
Make several copies, and don't forget to re-copy once a year or two with good media. DON'T go cheap on CDs, I've had no-name cheapo stufff disintegrate on me, literally. Within three months the emulsion would start to bubble and flake off. We burn lots of the cheap stuff for transfers at work, but we use nothing but good TYs for long-term storage. And even those fail, rarely, but they do.
Here's an interesting article on this issue: http://www.cd-info.com/CDIC/History/Commentary/Parker/stcroix.html
Basically, CDs are the best way to store the images. Just make sure you get a good burner and good media. DVD is going to be the next step. But either way, anyting digital needs to be closely watched. Make sure to back up frequently and redundantly. These files are all you have, be really proactive in protecting them.
#5. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 4archivue Registered since 26th Mar 2002Mon 30-Sep-02 06:27 PM
I understand your views... About Tiff and Jpegs (I did meet however some peculiar species of those who were hard to get at.. ). I was wondering about Raw and Nef...?
Bit information kept in a file can evolve with technology progress... In ten years from now I can't even imagine the sort of informations we would want to keep on a file (already text, why not sound, links, curves, etc...) While most major camera producers will keep the "old " format for a while... How long before the new standard gets itself old enough to just discard the very, very old one...? More than a dozen of file formats have disappeared since the eighties and only a few third party translators can still read them....
But you are definitly right about CD's in general and "cheap" one's in particular.... DVD should be next good thing.. But those burners are still quite frail and break down at the worse moment (as usual.. )
Oh well... As Alfred.E. Neumann would say,... "What me worry..." :-):-)
#6. "RE: Long Term Storage/Archival Of Images" | In response to Reply # 5Seb Basic MemberMon 30-Sep-02 06:32 PM
You have a point. I think if you're using something non-standard or proprietary, it'll be more likely to get nuked when time comes to "improve" the manufacturer's line. But, IMO, if you're suing something like PSD or TIFF, then you're future-proof for many more years to come, as you can't get much more established than those. We'll see what heppens to JPEG and if PNG ever catches on. Time will tell.