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Somebody told me that digitization will let us preserve things forever, but I feel like it's the opposite because of how complicated accessing digital data is and how fast technological systems evolve. Old formats get superseded by updated ones and niche platform-specific ones get abandoned when that platform does. We can look at a wall relief from 5000 years ago and work out an approximation of what it was saying just by looking at it, but how would you get any data out of a floppy filled with files for a program that hasn't been updated in 100 years?

Eventually the effort of maintaining compatibility with old things is going to cause data to be effectively lost, but some formats will obviously last longer than others. Personally, I think the humble .txt file will outlast most others because its simple, yet vitally important to many basic computing tasks so you can't easily get rid of it and there's not much incentive to improve the format. That said, I could also see a specialized format that is used for something like .nes which is used pretty much just to preserve old data being maintained by enthusiasts while more general-purpose formats get killed off to force people to adopt newer ones. Which ones do you think will pass the test of time and which will be be the quickest to die out?


tiff or png because a picture is worth 1000 words


File:[MoyaiSubs] Mewkledreamy -….jpg (251.14 KB,1920x1080)

The other post about images is a good idea, but maybe the ideal solution is something that's easily interpreted in binary or hexadecimals or something. Maybe looking at video games and people who mod and tinker with them is the ideal way to learn how to make something readable to people who were never intended to read it.
Access to the data will probably become increasingly more important than worrying about the quality of the data itself. I can know more about what forums were saying 20 years ago than what happens in some official discord or twitter, so information loss is already a fact of life we've accepted.


They'll be obsoleted by apng and webp within 10 years.


>We can look at a wall relief from 5000 years ago and work out an approximation of what it was saying just by looking at it,
No, we can't.
Without the rosetta stone, we would have no idea what any of these ancient scripts are saying. But there is only one rosetta stone, and many ancient texts. For most of them, we can only acknowledge that they look like actual writings, and that they are probably not the prehistoric equivalent of random key-bashing.
"Pre-historic" is a fascinating term in that regard. It's only pre-historic because we have no idea what they wrote.

On topic:
I think very basic image and music formats have the best chance at being resurrected (if the data itself survives). Of course, they probably won't look or sound anything like what they used to, given that they are being reproduced on completely different hardware with no output control in between generations.
But for example bitmaps encode every single pixel into a number. They are technically just a long stream of pixels.
If you split that stream at the right points, you get a sensibly looking image (just from the coherence of shapes), even if the colors are all completely wrong. Once you have a set of 10k such images, you can make educated guesses on what the correct colors would be.
This would hold true even in a speculative future where no one has any idea of today's languages. If they dig up some old physical data carriers from one of those long-term data storage centers we are setting up, they will probably be able to figure this shit out.


Wall reliefs are drawings or sculptures, so they don't require you understand the language. Granted, there is a lot of speculation on the context and implications of such abstract things, but the data they portray is clearly visible to anyone with eyes and a human brain, even if the cultural interpreter is only functioning at the most universal level. Scripts can suffer the issue of losing the interpretive link to modern languages, but the actual data is still there and we can be pretty sure that it is language. Working to understand what glyphs mean is very different from trying to gain access to the glyphs.

What you described with the "best guess" analyses of surviving images would probably be the closest equivalent to this. They'll have to say "this is a reconstruction of what we think their art looked like, but we really can't know for sure". And unless they find the storage, hardware, software, and power source all in working order it's going to be a nightmare even getting to that stage. I suppose the bright side is that any successful extractions will be much richer in information.


>objective acquired: eliminate all gamer grannies
3000 A.D. here, what's the context, the meaning, and the greater cultural significance of this?


I expect .xlsx to presist in regular use until atleast one hundred years after microsofts total demise


File:img-jeFbJ1BUkFsQ8K9iT5T92.jpeg (440.27 KB,1024x1024)

Jpg maybe, helluva amount of just your usual family photos stored in jpg. What we rescue first when stuff occurs? Photos, good old, here to be. Here to stay.


This seems true, and I think Excel itself will continue to be huge, but .xlsx is just barely older now than .xls was when it got replaced by .xlsx. .xls is still supported for legacy purposes (though often imperfectly), but older Excel formats like .xlc have been phased out entirely. Microsoft likes having shiny new things to sell and they can pretty much force people to accept it as long as it's not breaking everyone's workflows all at once.

There are a ton of family videos stored on VHS too, but if you don't convert those to a modern format soon it's going to get increasingly difficult to play them.


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I got an vhs player and it works
When it comes to digital media, you only need a soft for files and i doubt jpg viewers gonna disappear suddenly, so why.


Normalfags store everything on the cloud nowadays.
If the cloud auto-converts everything from jpeg to the futuristic-and-great format, they will probably not even realize, nor will they notice the drop in quality.
When they try and fail to access the data on their old storage devices, people will laugh at them for living in the past.


File:9c8b4c4202bf00008696b3375d….jpg (100.38 KB,512x768)

every move is cheat and lies and yeah it's all in ya mind


I think compression of files (png, jpg, flac, mp3, etc) is going to be hard to reverse engineer with only access to some examples of compressed files, but if some digital archeologist can find a batch of files in an uncompressed format (bmp, wav) along with the compressed versions then it will be possible. It's funny to think a few random images on somebody's drive could be the format equivalent of the rosetta stone.

Look how complicated PNG alone is


notepad is so cute...


>It's funny to think a few random images on somebody's drive could be the format equivalent of the rosetta stone
finally, all the TBs of manga porn I have will be put to good use


very optimistic in the face of tradion


>Portable Network Graphics (PNG, officially pronounced /pɪŋ/[2][3] PING
always pronounced it as PEE-en-JEE


File:img-fTr7DqnEGpLd9TW5oWdBn.jpeg (532.72 KB,1024x1024)

So before that u wasnut curtain about "good use"

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