On Wed, 24 May 2006, George Brock-Nannestad wrote:

> From: Patent Tactics, George Brock-Nannestad
> ----- I think that the major problem is that unless money is supplied on a
> regular basis for maintaining, migrating and also to ensure that
> _cataloguing_ is migrated, then the one-time effort is entirely worthless.

But what if that archive could generate income.

> I fear that
> private funding bodies think the same - they want monuments, not a constant
> drain.

Is there a scenario which could provide them with a monument. We have
endowments but I doubt that alone would be a solution.

> It so much goes against the grain of archivists not to have permanent
> accessibility to permanent media. And I shudder to think that our cultural
> heritage hangs in such thin threads: stable power supply, stable
> manufacturing basis. As Richard Hess has shown us, even private individuals
> may duplicate the threads, but only as long as somebody manufactures them.

I too have moments when I shudder over the those same thoughts. There are
times when I wonder if our history is too important to be in the hands of
the for-profit world.

> ----- it is a question of making preservation and accessibility fashionable
> in society, and to develop technical standard procedures that will permit
> every institution to trust what is done in another institution. If we are
> truly an audiovisual culture, then it will logically follow that the content
> must be preserved/made accessible as a public duty. However, we are _not_ an
> audiovisual culture, we are merely consumers, and as long as we are
> entertained, we do not make uprisings, and we do not really care at all.
> Not very long term optimistic, I know, but as long as I am entertained - by
> listening to my preferred, very early recordings and live music in a suitable
> mix .........................................

Would you say we preserve the printed word because we see it as being
something more than just entertainment?

As I think about this, and quite frankly for much of my life I never gave
these considerations much thought as preservation just seemed to be a
natural imperative...I wonder what information is contained in our
audio...certainly some history, both through word and music, histories of
what sound says about us and our time in what are we trying
to preserve? As a musician, I find the sound of a speaking voice saying so
much more than a transcript of what was said. I find the music making of
another saying a great deal about their time, far more so than the printed
score. Is it that we value print more than audio in that print allows a wider
range of interpretation of an idea than the specificity provided by a

I am reminded of a tenet of educational psychology which suggests that we
retain better what we see versus what we hear. I wonder if that reduces, in the
minds of many, the value of preserving what we hear.