Archives and Archivists in the News
A startup is pitching a mind-uploading service that is “100 percent fatal” by Antonio Regalado [content warning: non-gory photo of human brain]
I don’t take this one tremendously seriously; I’ll get that observation out of the way. But as an archivist, I’m fascinated by the fantasy of brain-uploading and the ways that it fails to account for the realities of archiving: aging data storage systems, climate control that can’t keep up with environmental changes, budget failures, faulty metadata, processing backlogs. Imagine being uploaded into your post-life home and realizing you’re the equivalent of a pre-Word-2011 .doc file. I’m anticipating San Junipero as eagerly as the next person, but the preservation challenges will be immense.
‘National Geographic’ Looks At Its Archives To Reflect On Coverage Of Race by Karen Grigsby Bates
This piece barely touches on archival matters — however, I think the National Geographic conversation is interesting because it emphasizes the value of archives in self-examination and growth. To know who we are, we need to know what we were, and we can’t always rely on our human memories for the latter. I’m sure that a trawl through the National Geo archives revealed a magazine that tried and failed and tried again in a lot of complex ways.