Photo Credit: Zacharie Grossen

Mount Everest. Photo Credit: Zacharie Grossen

Most everyone in our society has an ever-increasing amount of digitally encoded documents and data, be they a private person or an institution. EMPAC, for one, has hundreds of hours of video and audio documenting performances and events created here on campus. While technology continues to change more rapidly than ever, attempts to standardize digital formats are undermined by an industry that has to meet shareholders’ expectations with new gear, protocols, and ever-new methods for distribution and storage.


Johannes Goebel

Johannes Goebel has been involved with the archiving and restoration of digitally created music since the mid-’80s, when the issue was already problematic, only 30 years after digital sound entered the world of music.

As director of EMPAC, he has been collaborating with the EMPAC team to archive the work done here, resulting in a “video chair,” a 688-page printed book (also available online), and a strategy to back up video and audio data in an inexpensive and hopefully longer-lasting way.

The talk will give an overview of present preservation strategies in the digital domain and present the concrete solution found for EMPAC, which is both inexpensive and pragmatic. This approach may be of interest to anyone in the scientific world, in industry (where it is being adopted), or at home.