[rescue] Preservation (was: Looking for Ultrix 4 for DECstation)

Ian Finder ian.finder at gmail.com
Fri Jul 22 17:27:10 CDT 2011

Starting a new thread.

On Fri, Jul 22, 2011 at 3:24 PM, Ian Finder <ian.finder at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I regard myself as a "temporary custodian" of my
>> gear and desperately hope that proper institutions can step to the
>> fore to preserve these wonderful machines before I pass on.
> That is exactly how I think of it, glad we're on the same page.
> I devote my time and money to this because I think this stuff should
> be accessible once people hopefully "get it."
> In 100 years, nothing would pleasure me more than if these machines
> could be preserved in such a way that they are dynamic and
> interactive, instead of sitting with a blank screen as a "mummified"
> inoperable corpse.
> I mean how neat would it be to be able to use the machine from inside
> its display case.
> Some day, I hope to put more time and my HDL skills into more
> future-proof and accessible ways to keep these systems running-- disk
> emulators, replacing all the caps with tantalum ones, and perhaps some
> sort of imaging and remote access system.
>>   One thing that sets computers apart from lots of historical "items"
>> (artefacts) is that computers were built to *do* things, an to just
>> preserve them as static artefacts denies them their context.  This is
>> a curator's nightmare -- in order for the artefact to *mean* anything,
>> is pretty much need not only to be in running order but needs to run
>> when questions are asked.
> This is why software preservation, legal or not, above ground or not,
> is crucial.
> On that topic, what is the lifespan on the (E)EPROM roms in all these
> machines and peripherals we love so dearly?
> Might it be time to start an organized stockpile of backup images for
> the rarer machines and peripherals?
> --
>    Ian Finder
>    (206) 395-MIPS
>    ian.finder at gmail.com

   Ian Finder
   (206) 395-MIPS
   ian.finder at gmail.com

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