From: Patent Tactics, George Brock-Nannestad

Steven Smolian proposed:

> We need a committee called, "When is good enough good enough?"  It would look
> at commonly technology related to various preservation activities and suggest
> what works now.

----- and I wholeheartedly concur. Bravo, could not have been said more

> Our preoccupation with new and emerging audio technologies is having an
> unanticipated effect on those who read these lists and whose expertise lies
> elsewhere.  They are putting preservation projects on hold, afraid to do the
> "wrong" thing, perhaps compromising the standards, stated or implied, by
> funding sources.  Some are being diverted from their true mission,
> implementing preservation programs.

----- that is the sad truth: I have collected 6,900 ARSClist messages, and
without analyzing them I would say that the majority relates to the quest for
the ideal, mingled with the quest for the eternal carrier, without also
requesting the eternal reproducing machine for that carrier. There are
pitifully few stop-gap measures proposed.

> My first candidate is the present CD 44.1/16 bit recording system using gold
> reflective layer discs.  Give the less than wealthy institutional users the OK
> to begin and/or continue preservation projects.   They should be presented
> with an idea of what is OK to do in this format and what might benefit
> substantially while awaiting or farming out to a better equipped facility
> those items where what is lost by going to CD is significant enough to be
> worth the wait and, surely, greater expense.

----- some archivists seem to take the responsibility for Eternity very
seriously, instead of letting the future take responsibility for their
heritage, that which has been salvaged by us.

> This should be discussed with the technically informed and a set of "get
> something done now" criteria, administratively independent of such groups,
> should be compiled to keep biting at the backlog.

----- a good friend of ours has paraphrased the old saying "Anything worth
doing is worth doing well". He says "Anything worth doing is worth doing even
badly", and he is so right. If no-one sticks their neck out for a first
edition of a discography, there will never be a call for further material.
However, the fact that it is there, and the fact that material can be added
to it, will make that material surface. Similarly, ever since 1999 I have
promoted the idea that even a data-reduced trace of a sound recording that
someone may need in the future is better than no trace at all. So, please
take Steven's suggestion with the seriousness it merits.

Kind regards,