Friday, August 8, 2008

Media Obsolescence

This story and variations on the theme crop up more often that is really necessary.
Strangely no mention of the mould that can get under the plastic on optical disks...or was that the hyped-up scourge of some three or so years ago (5, 6 years ago?)? Don't hear much about it these days.

A lot in this article is true and to the point but typically this commentator offers no suggestions for a solution. More of a jaded old gripe than a helpful article. We are at the mercy of this monster we have created. Help us oh prophets of ages past who had the good sense to make information permanent. Send another Moses, with the internet etched on tablets of hardest obsidian - carved into the stone by the hand of god his self, verily...

I do need to correct this oaf on one point. I bought a turntable just 5 or 6 years ago - specifically a DJ type turntable and believe it or not - it will play 78s - so the fact that this guy threw away 'valuable' 78s is preposterous. And if they were valuable he would have been able to sell them on e-bay. Perhaps they were just old 78s nobody wanted and not actually valuable at all.

That simplicity is threatened, even in the publishing industry. I recently completed a book, printed it and gave the manuscript to my agent. To give it to a publisher, she wanted it in a digital version, so I gave her a Word file. When she opened it on her computer, it was full of garbage characters. There had been some problem in the document conversions among several programs. I couldn't fix it.
Maaaan, is this guy a Luddite! And the publisher had no clue what she was doing. And why was he submitting a 'Word' file to a publisher?! 'there had been some problem in the document conversions among several programs' - how's that for technical jargon!!! Me no understand - If I were he, I'd be embarrassed to admit such unforgivable ignorance. Just ask someone who knows about these things before you go making an arse of yourself on the internet!!!

Really, people need to read the stuff they write before they publish. Or perhaps not - it is all ephemeral and no one will know 20 years from now that Russell Smith is a clod.

No comments: