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Digital Photos Never Fade they're just Filed Away

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February 7, 2005 11:05:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Forget Archival Inks and expensive paper just re-print them as needed for
display.

Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?

What indexing scheme do you use?


Evad
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 11:44:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

I keep backups on DVD+RW. Every time there are another 4GBytes of RAW
images, I burn another DVD. Every time there is another 4 GBytes of
processed images, I burn another DVD.

I keep RAWs in camera order
I keep JPGs in folders with names appropriate to the event

My memory is good enough (and windows search tools good enough) for
this to be the only archiving methods I employ.
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 6:08:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Mon, 7 Feb 2005 08:05:18 -0800, "Evad" <evad@dodgeit.com> wrote:

>
>Forget Archival Inks and expensive paper just re-print them as needed for
>display.

I prepare reports and documents for libraries, museums and archives.
You suggestion doesn't work in that world if it's for long term use.
Everything has to be on archival paper and at least 100 years safe.
Now that I'm moving to digital imaging, I'll continue that by printing
on archival paper and making the best archival prints possible.

They don't want digital media for long term.

To see the problems with all digital media take a look at these.

http://www.longnow.org/10klibrary/library.htm

http://library.colstate.edu/libr1105/kramer/cadeau/dead...


*****************************************************

"You wouldn't like to re-deal would you dealer? No.
They only deal to you once, and then you pick them
up and play them."

"Across the River and Into the Trees"
Ernest Hemingway, 1950
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 8:14:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Evad wrote:
> Forget Archival Inks and expensive paper just re-print them as needed for
> display.
>
> Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?
>
> What indexing scheme do you use?
>
>
> Evad


If you look back over 50 years the picture is gloomy and this is a
standard computing/archive question. It's not quite that simple I'm afraid.

What's the life of the image on the medium before it fades or degrades?
eg magnetic tape needed a rewind every 6 months, CD might degrade or
absorb inks etc, photographic images fade in decades.

What's the life cycle of the media you store it on and how long will you
be able to buy a 'processing device'? Since the 1960s we've had 1"
magnetic tape, 1/2 inch 7 track, 1/2 inch 9 track nrzi, 9 track phase
encoded, exchangable disks of 30Mb, 60Mb, floppy disks of ?8"?, 5.25",
3.5", single and double density, Zip drives, CDs, now DVD. For music
we've had 78s, 45s, 33s, audio cassette, CD and now DVD coming. How
long will CF, xD, SD, Sony stick, etc all exist? How long were 8mm
movie and Betamax supported, how long will APS, 35mm and VHS be supported?

What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?

Will you still have the software to read it? Will future versions of
Windoze/Unix/MAC OS still support the software or will it go the way of
previous DOS applications?

This isn't just a problem about digital photos - it's about any
substantial volume of information which you want to keep - a library
catalogue, the financial records of a company, design details of a car
or plane, etc. You have to roll them over and copy them to new
technologies as and when they change, and ensure that when you change
software for new functionality that you can read previous data.

That's the last 50 years and I'm sure the next 50 will accelerate the
media development cycle because we all want more pixels, bigger images,
better sound, more information, faster access.

As for how do I currently keep track of my digital photos? A
spreadsheet with image numbers, description, filename, folder, reference
number of first archiving CD, reference number of final archiving CD.
Crude but okay for the few hundred I have so far, but I know it's not a
long term answer.

Good luck!
Phil
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 8:14:15 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"P.R.Brady" <iss025@bangor.ac.uk> wrote in message
news:4207A1E6.3020803@bangor.ac.uk...
> Evad wrote:
>> Forget Archival Inks and expensive paper just re-print them as needed for
>> display.
>>
>> Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?
>>
>> What indexing scheme do you use?
>>
>>
>> Evad
>
>
> If you look back over 50 years the picture is gloomy and this is a
> standard computing/archive question. It's not quite that simple I'm
> afraid.
>
> What's the life of the image on the medium before it fades or degrades? eg
> magnetic tape needed a rewind every 6 months, CD might degrade or absorb
> inks etc, photographic images fade in decades.
>
> What's the life cycle of the media you store it on and how long will you
> be able to buy a 'processing device'? Since the 1960s we've had 1"
> magnetic tape, 1/2 inch 7 track, 1/2 inch 9 track nrzi, 9 track phase
> encoded, exchangable disks of 30Mb, 60Mb, floppy disks of ?8"?, 5.25",
> 3.5", single and double density, Zip drives, CDs, now DVD. For music
> we've had 78s, 45s, 33s, audio cassette, CD and now DVD coming. How long
> will CF, xD, SD, Sony stick, etc all exist? How long were 8mm movie and
> Betamax supported, how long will APS, 35mm and VHS be supported?
>
> What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
> Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?
>
> Will you still have the software to read it? Will future versions of
> Windoze/Unix/MAC OS still support the software or will it go the way of
> previous DOS applications?
>
> This isn't just a problem about digital photos - it's about any
> substantial volume of information which you want to keep - a library
> catalogue, the financial records of a company, design details of a car or
> plane, etc. You have to roll them over and copy them to new technologies
> as and when they change, and ensure that when you change software for new
> functionality that you can read previous data.
>
> That's the last 50 years and I'm sure the next 50 will accelerate the
> media development cycle because we all want more pixels, bigger images,
> better sound, more information, faster access.
>
> As for how do I currently keep track of my digital photos? A spreadsheet
> with image numbers, description, filename, folder, reference number of
> first archiving CD, reference number of final archiving CD. Crude but okay
> for the few hundred I have so far, but I know it's not a long term answer.
>
> Good luck!
> Phil
>

Many people talk about the current technology fading and new technology
taking its place. These same people imply that it is going to take place
over night and that you will lose what you have on CD, for example, when
something else takes its place.

I have been successful with carrying over files that are valuable to me
since using them on a CPM machine. They started out on 5 1/4 floppies, went
to CD and now are on DVD. I am confident that when the DVD replalcement
comes along, I will transfer these files to that replacement. There will be
software to enable the transfer from old format to new format for quite some
time after a new format comes in. Granted, there will be some who are too
lazy or too dumb to do this, but the vast majority of computer users will
get it done.

If something replaces JPG, it also won't happen overnight. You will have
ample time to convert files and I can guarantee that someone will come up
with the software to get it done in batch format. Probably free software
since it will be a relatively simple program.

The argument of CD and DVD becoming obsolete and endangering your photos is
not valid!!

Don
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 9:04:45 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Mon, 07 Feb 2005 17:14:14 +0000, "P.R.Brady" <iss025@bangor.ac.uk>
wrote:

>Evad wrote:
>> Forget Archival Inks and expensive paper just re-print them as needed for
>> display.
>>
>> Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?
>>
>> What indexing scheme do you use?
>>
>>
>> Evad
>
>
>If you look back over 50 years the picture is gloomy and this is a
>standard computing/archive question. It's not quite that simple I'm afraid.
>
>What's the life of the image on the medium before it fades or degrades?
> eg magnetic tape needed a rewind every 6 months, CD might degrade or
>absorb inks etc, photographic images fade in decades.
>
>What's the life cycle of the media you store it on and how long will you
>be able to buy a 'processing device'? Since the 1960s we've had 1"
>magnetic tape, 1/2 inch 7 track, 1/2 inch 9 track nrzi, 9 track phase
>encoded, exchangable disks of 30Mb, 60Mb, floppy disks of ?8"?, 5.25",
>3.5", single and double density, Zip drives, CDs, now DVD.

Cool isn't it?

> For music
>we've had 78s, 45s, 33s, audio cassette, CD and now DVD coming.

Yes, and in the last 50 years, how much music has been lost?

....none?

Anything of any value is always available in the latest format, no
matter how old the original material was. The shite stuff may die off,
but someone, somewhere can still play it.

> How
>long will CF, xD, SD, Sony stick, etc all exist? How long were 8mm
>movie and Betamax supported, how long will APS, 35mm and VHS be supported?

Again, today you can get this stuff transferred onto the latest media.
*IF* it's worth anything to you.

>What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
>Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?

The format exists today, so of course it will exist in the future.

>Will you still have the software to read it? Will future versions of
>Windoze/Unix/MAC OS still support the software or will it go the way of
>previous DOS applications?

Have you got a problem running some DOS software? There are solutions.

You can even play 1970's 8 bit Atari cartridge games on today's PCs
using emulators. Because they are *worth keeping.*

Open photoshop and just look at all those old image standards it can
read - some are from early 8 bit OS's. That list will just get bigger
and bigger, not a problem.

>This isn't just a problem about digital photos - it's about any
>substantial volume of information which you want to keep - a library
>catalogue, the financial records of a company, design details of a car
>or plane, etc. You have to roll them over and copy them to new
>technologies as and when they change, and ensure that when you change
>software for new functionality that you can read previous data.

So it's simple really. The new media has significantly more capacity
than the old, the archive continues to physically shrink. My 1,200
3.5" disk collection fit onto 3 CDRs, now this fits onto 1 DVDR, with
space for another 2500 disk images. Today, it can be duplicated within
15 minutes.

>That's the last 50 years and I'm sure the next 50 will accelerate the
>media development cycle because we all want more pixels, bigger images,
>better sound, more information, faster access.

We've had CDs for 25 years now, I don't see a replacement any time
soon. CD's work well, there is little to improve on their design.
DVD-Audio seems to have failed to make a dent, even though it's been
out for a year now.

Capacity of storage mediums *do* change fast. Because of that, CDR's
may start to become rare in favor of DVDR.

>As for how do I currently keep track of my digital photos? A
>spreadsheet with image numbers, description, filename, folder, reference
>number of first archiving CD, reference number of final archiving CD.
>Crude but okay for the few hundred I have so far, but I know it's not a
>long term answer.

Spreadsheet? Yuchk...

Spreadsheets are for adding numbers or sorting lists, not catalogs.

In addition to your spreadsheet <shudder>, I suggest you consider
something like JAlbum (its FREE):

http://jalbum.net/

...or jump right to the samples page for eye-candy:

http://jalbum.net/samples.jsp

This can make web-page indexes of image collections, displaying
thumbnails with small previews (600x400 for example) and EXIF data.
The resulting files are small enough to be kept on your HD (about 8Mb
per 100 pictures, smaller if you so configure it).

--
Owamanga!
Anonymous
February 7, 2005 10:31:40 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>>>>> Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?

Photos are named with the year/month and then a 3-letter identifier, and
then a consecutive number for the series. A photo taken today to start a
new series would be named something like:
0502home001

And the 132nd vacation photo taken in San Francisco last month would be
named something like:
0501sfo132

These are put into folders that would string out alphabetically (by year and
month) in Windows Explorer like this:
2004 12 xmas
2005 01 san francisco
2005 02 cleveland
2005 02 home shots

These folders--years worth--all can be grouped into folders by year, so that
there would be a 2004 folder, a 2005 folder, etc--and they would all show up
in Windows Explorer in consecutive order. Within each year folder would
be a smattering of month-specific folders that would automatically organize
themselves by month, and then by alphabetized name (if you don't want the
Venice shots from July, 2003 to come before the Munich shots that month ,
you could name the Munich folder "2003 07 Italy" instead of "2003 07
Venice", so that it appears before the folder named "2003 07 Munich").

So, if any of the pictures or folders were to be thrown together with
others, they would order themselves by month and location (except that those
pictures from the last century might show up after the pictures from this
century--no big deal).

Then the finished collection gets saved to MULTIPLE hard-drives, including
at least one portable hard-drive that is not on the premises. Hard-drives
are very likely a more secure medium than CD's--and can hold your entire
collection.
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 12:05:14 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

P.R.Brady wrote:
> Evad wrote:
>
> If you look back over 50 years the picture is gloomy and this is a
> standard computing/archive question. It's not quite that simple I'm
> afraid.
It is likely that most people will loose 99% of the pictures they take
eventually. 50 years probably means after the photographer has died. No old
shoe box to discover in the attic, just a non-working beige box.
Gloomy indeed!
Some bright points:
>
> What's the life of the image on the medium before it fades or degrades?
> eg magnetic tape needed a rewind every 6 months, CD might degrade or
> absorb inks etc, photographic images fade in decades.
DLT tapes have a shelf life of > 30 years. With a capacity 20.000 - 200.000
pictures each...
>
<snip>>
> What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
> Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?
To read TIFF and also JPEG and other well defined formats there are excellent
open source C libraries. Programmers tend to be very conservative about their
languages, so it is likely that with a little tinkering a working TIFF reader
can be compiled after 50 years.
>
>
>
> As for how do I currently keep track of my digital photos? A
> spreadsheet with image numbers, description, filename, folder, reference
> number of first archiving CD, reference number of final archiving CD.
> Crude but okay for the few hundred I have so far, but I know it's not a
> long term answer.
IMO local image databases, especially the closed ones, offer no long term
security. Good filenames are better, but also no match for a virus wiping
your disks.

Cheers, you'll need it, Hans
February 8, 2005 12:05:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

There has already been problems in some CDs 10 years old that has started
loosing their data from the medium coming apart allowing air to migrate into
the aluminum causing bad spots. If that goes that's 650 plus megs gone, now
there is DVDs that could be over 4.5Gs lost. It isn't will there be a way to
read then in the future, is will there be something there to read. Just a
thought.




"HvdV" <nohanz@svi.nl> wrote in message
news:be9bb$4207c9f3$3e3aaa83$15628@news1.versatel.nl...
> P.R.Brady wrote:
>> Evad wrote:
>>
>> If you look back over 50 years the picture is gloomy and this is a
>> standard computing/archive question. It's not quite that simple I'm
>> afraid.
> It is likely that most people will loose 99% of the pictures they take
> eventually. 50 years probably means after the photographer has died. No
> old shoe box to discover in the attic, just a non-working beige box.
> Gloomy indeed!
> Some bright points:
>>
>> What's the life of the image on the medium before it fades or degrades?
>> eg magnetic tape needed a rewind every 6 months, CD might degrade or
>> absorb inks etc, photographic images fade in decades.
> DLT tapes have a shelf life of > 30 years. With a capacity 20.000 -
> 200.000 pictures each...
>>
> <snip>>
>> What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
>> Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?
> To read TIFF and also JPEG and other well defined formats there are
> excellent open source C libraries. Programmers tend to be very
> conservative about their languages, so it is likely that with a little
> tinkering a working TIFF reader can be compiled after 50 years.
>>
>>
>>
>> As for how do I currently keep track of my digital photos? A spreadsheet
>> with image numbers, description, filename, folder, reference number of
>> first archiving CD, reference number of final archiving CD. Crude but
>> okay for the few hundred I have so far, but I know it's not a long term
>> answer.
> IMO local image databases, especially the closed ones, offer no long term
> security. Good filenames are better, but also no match for a virus wiping
> your disks.
>
> Cheers, you'll need it, Hans
February 8, 2005 12:05:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

2005-02-07, HvdV wrote:
> P.R.Brady wrote:
>>
><snip>>
>> What about recording software standards? Will JPEG still exist? Will
>> Canon/Fuji/Nikon etc RAW formats still exist in 5,10,15,20 years?
> To read TIFF and also JPEG and other well defined formats there are excellent
> open source C libraries. Programmers tend to be very conservative about their
> languages, so it is likely that with a little tinkering a working TIFF reader
> can be compiled after 50 years.

That is one of the more important aspects, often overlooked IMHO - open
standards. Don't try to make an archive with closed formats/standards.
Sooner or later you'll get into problems ( or the generation after you
trying to move the archive to new media). This even holds for filesystems
where you put the data on, &c., &c.

-peter
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 12:05:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Mon, 7 Feb 2005 14:41:08 -0600, "SteveJ" <SJ@comcast.net> wrote:

>There has already been problems in some CDs 10 years old that has started
>loosing their data from the medium coming apart allowing air to migrate into
>the aluminum causing bad spots. If that goes that's 650 plus megs gone, now
>there is DVDs that could be over 4.5Gs lost. It isn't will there be a way to
>read then in the future, is will there be something there to read. Just a
>thought.

DVDRs are the same diameter as CDRs. There, the similarity ends.

DVDRs have a thick polymer substrate layer above and below the data
layer, CDRs are missing the one above the data layer and therefore
much more prone to air exposure of the data layer, and top-surface
scratches.

--
Owamanga!
February 8, 2005 12:20:52 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Don Dunlap" <dondunlapwhoami@direcway.com> wrote in message
news:77685$4207be98

>
> The argument of CD and DVD becoming obsolete and endangering your photos
is
> not valid!!
>

Unfortunately, that argument is quite valid.

Your solution is to continue migrating as new file formats and/or media are
introduced. That works well for a time.

But eventually it will fall to some descendant to take up that project, and
we know that not all families have people that will preserve things from
previous generations.

In the case of libraries and archives, there is going to be a significant
budget requirement to migrate everything as time goes on. The volume of
date will grow exponentially.

There is a real concern that future budget crises may result in a lot of
this stuff being left behind. Same thing for corporate records--how much of
their bottom line will they sacrifice just to preserve 50-year-old tax
returns?

Kodak recommends that important photos be PRINTED and stored in as close to
archival temperature/humidity conditions as possible.

There is a distance possibility that, in the long run, that low-tech
approach may be the best of all.
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 12:20:53 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Jeremy" <jeremy@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:UYQNd.4515$wK.3602@newsread3.news.atl.earthlink.net...
>
> "Don Dunlap" <dondunlapwhoami@direcway.com> wrote in message
> news:77685$4207be98
>
>>
> Kodak recommends that important photos be PRINTED and stored in as close
> to
> archival temperature/humidity conditions as possible.
>
> There is a distance possibility that, in the long run, that low-tech
> approach may be the best of all.

That is exactly the conclusion I came to last year. When searching through
family belongings covered in an inch of dust I found 3 photo albums. These
albums contained valuable family photos some of them over 60 years old. As
I flipped through the albums I realized that if these photos where recorded
on some type of electronic disk I would have most likely tossed them out
without going to the trouble of finding the device capable of reading the
content of the disks.

The advantage of low tech approach is that there is no need for any type of
electronic device in order to see the photos. You need only your eyeballs,
no electronics, no electricity, no nothing :-)

I keep two copies of my digital photos on DVD+R disks, but I have decided to
print very few of good family photos on paper and keep them in an album. 60
years from now if a family member stumbles upon the DVD+R disks and the
paper album they most likely will toss away the DVD disks but curiously will
flip through the album. Also, it is very important to have some notes or
annotations at the back of photo.
February 8, 2005 12:23:46 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Peter" <durians.nomail@gmx.net> wrote in message
news:36q2rhF52ske3U1@individual.net...

> That is one of the more important aspects, often overlooked IMHO - open
> standards. Don't try to make an archive with closed formats/standards.
> Sooner or later you'll get into problems ( or the generation after you
> trying to move the archive to new media). This even holds for filesystems
> where you put the data on, &c., &c.
>

Almost makes one want to go back to the simple card catalogue!

My hometown library uses one, and has for over 100 years. They have a
database, too, but everything is also printed up on cards, and the patrons
can use either system.

Low tech, pain-in-the-butt, but an excellent long-term strategy.
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 1:25:01 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Peter wrote:
>
> That is one of the more important aspects, often overlooked IMHO - open
> standards. Don't try to make an archive with closed formats/standards.
> Sooner or later you'll get into problems ( or the generation after you
> trying to move the archive to new media). This even holds for filesystems
> where you put the data on, &c., &c.
Or non-open source compression!
BTW, anyone ideas how successful Adobe is in pushing a standard for RAW format?

-- Hans
February 8, 2005 1:26:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

There has already been problems in some CDs 10 years old that has started
loosing their data from the medium coming apart allowing air to migrate into
the aluminum causing bad spots. If that goes that's 650 plus megs gone, now
there is DVDs that could be over 4.5Gs lost. It isn't will there be a way to
read then in the future, is will there be something there to read. Just a
thought.
Answer #1
DVDRs are the same diameter as CDRs. There, the similarity ends.

DVDRs have a thick polymer substrate layer above and below the data
layer, CDRs are missing the one above the data layer and therefore
much more prone to air exposure of the data layer, and top-surface
scratches.

One thing about a good book. NO power required to read.
February 8, 2005 1:31:26 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Even Egyptian Hieroglyphics will fade out in time.
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 11:55:01 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Douglas W. Hoyt wrote:
>>>>>>Now, how do you keep track of all your old digital photos?
>
>
> Photos are named with the year/month and then a 3-letter identifier, and
> then a consecutive number for the series. A photo taken today to start a
> new series would be named something like:
> 0502home001
>
> And the 132nd vacation photo taken in San Francisco last month would be
> named something like:
> 0501sfo132
>
> These are put into folders that would string out alphabetically (by year and
> month) in Windows Explorer like this:
Never rely on something over which you have absolutely no control like
Explorer. Though in this case I suppose it won't do harm.

<snip>
>
> Then the finished collection gets saved to MULTIPLE hard-drives, including
> at least one portable hard-drive that is not on the premises. Hard-drives
> are very likely a more secure medium than CD's--and can hold your entire
> collection.
If you are as paranoid as I think you are or myself you'd better get a RAID
disk array with a journaling file system, a linear tape drive and a vault for
the tapes. It's what banks use and reasonably affordable nowadays.

-- Hans
Anonymous
February 8, 2005 9:02:52 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Owamanga wrote:

[snipped]


I suggest you consider
> something like JAlbum (its FREE):
>
> http://jalbum.net/
>
> ..or jump right to the samples page for eye-candy:
>
> http://jalbum.net/samples.jsp
>
> This can make web-page indexes of image collections, displaying
> thumbnails with small previews (600x400 for example) and EXIF data.
> The resulting files are small enough to be kept on your HD (about 8Mb
> per 100 pictures, smaller if you so configure it).
>
> --
> Owamanga!

Thanks Owamanga,
Looks interesting if it can handle and index media other than hard
disk.
Phil
!