Sunday, March 1, 2009

To Standardize Or Not To Standardize

I recall the time I used to carry a pack of floppy disks with such pride, as if they were the world's most prized possession. A few years later I look back & stand in dismay wondering how "lame" I have been. Although I still have the floppy disks with my valuable files stored in them I am constantly worrying about being able to get the data when I need. Some of the modern day computing devices do not even have a floppy disk drive to read floppy disks.

Storing digital data is not so effortless as filing away a stack of papers. One has got to make sure that the format in which the data is available will supported by data processing devices in the years to come. Not only the unavailability of hardware & related software, but also data on storage devices are subject to corruption & decay. Hence the need of us being a little more proactive as far as long term data preservation is concerned.

Technology has come a long way since the days people wrote on stone slabs. Storing data on digital media is faster, economical and also saves paper! The need however is in establishing a standard in digital data formats just so that we can still dig out what we have buried 15 - 20 years afterward.

1 comment:

Sach said...

This article talks about a 4.02m euro (£3.58m) project aims to create a universal emulator that can open and play obsolete file formats.