Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

SoylentNews is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop. Only 17 submissions in the queue.
posted by mrpg on Saturday June 30 2018, @04:58AM   Printer-friendly
from the 404 dept.

Vint Cerf, the godfather of the Internet, spoke in Sydney, Australia on Wednesday and issued a blunt call to action for a digital preservation regime for content and code to be quickly put in place to counter the existing throwaway culture that denies future generations an essential window into life in the past. He emphasized that this was especially needed for the WWW. Due to the volatile nature of electronic storage media as well as the format in which information is encoded, it is not possible to preserve digital material without prior planning and action.

[...] While the digital disappearance phenomenon is one which has so far mainly vexed official archivists and librarians for some years now, Cerf's take is that as everything goes from creation, the risk of accidental or careless memory loss increases correspondingly.

Archivists have for decades fought publicly for open document formats to hedge against proprietary and vendor risks – especially when classified material usually can only be made public after 30 to 50 years, sometimes longer.

From iTnews : Internet is losing its memory: Cerf


Original Submission

 
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Saturday June 30 2018, @05:44AM (2 children)

    by maxwell demon (1608) on Saturday June 30 2018, @05:44AM (#700567) Journal

    There are enough players that want to make content practically uncopyable. Which is incompatible with Cerf's goal. And unfortunately they are far more powerful.

    --
    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +3  
       Insightful=3, Total=3
    Extra 'Insightful' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   5  
  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday June 30 2018, @08:17AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday June 30 2018, @08:17AM (#700587)

    Hopefully, there will always be those who worked wearing the corporate noose, who find themselves laid off one day, and they reciprocate the kindness by coding transcoders that convert the secret sauce into public commodity file formats.

    I think its a good thing to know how to code. That way, you know good and well what your code does. Kinda like that feeling I got when I coded my own CRC and MD5 digester from odds and ends I found... when I had finally written my own C++ library under Borland Turbo C++ 3.1 for DOS, I could use it knowing good and well how to use it and what it did. I ended up using that program for years... to make sure no computer virus was messing with my boot sector or DOS system files. In those days, the "hard stuff", like reading or writing a disk sector or writing to the CRT was in boot ROM, unwritable by code, and could be trusted. Every computer shipped usually had two of these EPROMS ( like 27C256 or so ) in it, and they used to even document the source code in the "IBM AT Technical Reference" manual. I still have those.

    This was during the BBS days where warez groups and brain viruses were running rampant. Every run of an .EXE, .COM, and sometimes .BAT was a play of computational Russian Roulette on my machine. A little coding, and I could fix it to where if the code did anything persistent, like altering anything in the boot sector, startup, or system files, I would rapidly discover what it did, then run SoftIce on it and fix it, or just trash it if it wasn't worth the trouble.

    But, with the advent of Microsoft Windows and bloatware, things got so big and complex that it was damn near impossible to fix anything and know that you fixed it right. The whole game shifted to where the writer could place stuff in there that did the damndest things... just like reading some of today's businesstalk where the reader is pummeled with many words, but none of them making any sort of committment on the seller.

    Its quite apparent that our Congress considered a technically literate America to be a bad thing, so they have passed all this law to make things like I used to do illegal. Best to have people completely ignorant, and our computational infrastructure crawling with nasty code where only those people authorized to do so can inspect it.

    I am just waiting for the Medical Community to extend the business handshake to Congress to get them to make it illegal to discuss how AIDS is spread, to protect the business models of the caregivers to the sick. Knowing how Congress acts, they will probably sign it. Healthy people are "bad for business" for the medical community. Best if everyone was sick. Good for business.

    Slowly but surely we have gotten our computational infrastructure so fragile these days. I feel as if I am an old Roman engineer, knowing how vulnerable our aquaducts are to enemy attack, but the waggers of the pen, with political power, are having us build the aqueducts with little levers in the side, which if pulled, will collapse the thing. If you bring up how vulnerable we are, they will retaliate by dismissing you from your job. They wear badge-hats, and no one is going to dare disobey a badge-hat, or so they seem to believe. I would just as soon have the laws of physics backing up my claim, not some verbiage on a piece of paper, enforced by men who will go off and fire guns at another man in obedience to orders.

    • (Score: 2) by frojack on Saturday June 30 2018, @06:32PM

      by frojack (1554) on Saturday June 30 2018, @06:32PM (#700749) Journal

      I think its a good thing to know how to code. That way, you know good and well what your code does. Kinda like that feeling I got when I coded my own CRC and MD5 digester from odds and ends I found... when I had finally written my own C++ library under Borland Turbo C++ 3.1 for DOS, I could use it knowing good and well how to use it and what it did. I ended up using that program for years...

      Then you quit using it, and it was never documented, and it dies with You or your hard drive, whichever comes first.

      --
      No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.