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December 2000


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Wayne Miller <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Sat, 9 Dec 2000 11:16:22 GMT
text/plain (49 lines)
Dear Tom,
While I, in large part, agree with you, you seem to ignore the existence of
CD's as a cheap, relatively stable storage medium. And while you are right
about the time/labor intensive nature of digitization, you should not
neglect the VERY intensive nature of conservation/preservation of
originals. And when we are talking about highly acidic newsprint, the 'slow
fires' are continuing to oxidize originals as we debate. Storage conditions
are, of course, extremely important. But the sad truth is that funders find
digitization sexy and archival environmental controls like kissing your
Wayne Miller

Thomas W. Perrin writes:

>  My comments on Digital photography being performed by low end cameras
> were based
>  upon an examination of the machines and their specifications at the
> Canon booth
>  at the American Library Association meeting in New Orleans a year and a
> half ago.
>  While it is true that I can put together a superb (color, high
> resolution, depth of field) digital photography setup in my home for
> less than $5000, including computer, the fact remains that the
> processing of material is slow. (as it should be).
>  I suggest that the machines being purchased by institutions are more
> likely to fall into the expensive ($15,000 and up) low resolution (300
> dpi), black and white, high speed, high volume cameras.
>  There is a significant technical limitation with regards to image
> quality: the higher the quality, the more memory is required and the
> processing time between images is correspondingly increased, thus
> slowing the whole process down. The progression of the limitation is
> geometric rather than arithmetic. A small increase in resolution
> mandates a disproportionately greater increase in memory and speed
> requirements.
>  I can purchase a large format digital Leica camera for $24,000 that
> will exceed any specification that film has to offer. But it's
> impractical with regards to memory storage and speed for the kind of
> volume processing that we are talking about.
>  On the other hand, IF the originals are preserved, then within decades
> we may be able to revisit them with more efficient technology.
>  Tom Perrin