----- Original Message -----
From: "David Lennick" <[log in to unmask]>
> I'm in the midst of trying to clear the house my parents bought in 1954, from
> which nothing was ever tossed. Nothing. The box everything ever came in,
> toys and torn stuffed animals, long runs of magazines (okay, some interesting
> 40s and 50s stuff there plus a few 30s Esquires), 9 or 10 non-working
> television sets and an equal number of radios..
> NOT EVERYTHING IS WORTH SAVING! Trust me. If you don't want it and your kids
> don't want it and no archive wants it....it's crap. Toss it. Do the world a
> favor. And of course the second after you do....somebody'll need it.
Well, that sounds very much like my current premises...IF I include the garage,
which has been the "repository of last resort" since I moved "Way on the
outskirts of town" about 9.5 years ago!
However, it is an immutable law of data archival that things don't lose
Once again, I refer (with SERIOUS intent...!) to what I call "Barr's 13th
law of data archival"...which exists in a two part version:
I) 99% of archived data will never again be accessed and/or referred to,
thus rendering its preservation an exercise in futility.
I-a) The remaining 1% will prove to be not only valuable, but essential,
in the subsequent history of humankind.
II) (the IMPORTANT part!!): There exists NO known reliable method for
determining in advance whether a given datum falls into the 99% or the
morse valuable 1%!!
Steven C. Barr