Scrap the Crap...

I needed to pick up a scrapbook for a friend.

I just needed a normal black book with black or white pages to stick photos and letter into, like the ones I am familiar with. I did not realize that 'scrap booking' is a major industry with its own section at the craft store.

To find a plain leather bound book without the words 'memory' or 'moment' stitched or printed on the front, I had to sift and wade through shelves of albums created by the Martha Stewart Home collection to match your walls, in creamy pastel puke me paint coordinated colors.

Come on seriously, how many shades of robin's egg blue and eggshell does one really need?

I remain a true blonde and if I am ever caught in a craft store discussing whether the puffy stickies over the velvet stickies would work better with the puke me paint album cover...pleez, pleeez, just shoot me!!


They have an entire section of scrapbook material from little suitcases to organize your plethora of 'scrapbook' crap such as stickers, scissors, background paper, lettering, glitter, blah, blah ,blah. You name it, they have it. Its like putting a Myspace site together minus the music and video player but I am sure they aren't that far behind Hallmark.

I wonder which of the two scrapbooks, virtual or real, will stand the test of time?

Which one will be around in 100 years?

There are scrolls thousand of years old that still provide answers and details of ancient times. My Grandmother's old photos and her great, great Grandmother's hand written letters are sitting in a shoe box on a shelf in my Mothers closet just as good as the day she wrote them. While digital mediums such as floppies, old tapes, and film need million dollar temp controlled rooms to survive as little as a few decades.

Will the internet be able to go the dame distance? Will future generations find any educational advantage to Hello Kitty stickers and 'pimp me' induced sites on the web.

As far as digital medium is concerned, I have to ask? Who can keep track of those tiny memory cards? I can't! I have a habit of reusing them, moving files around, crashing computers, and losing half of my photos. Its the present day version of forgetting to process rolls of film only to discover them years later and developing pink grainy art and the loss of photos.

For now, Myspace and Ofoto seem an easier solution for me but for my ancestors and for preservation, what does the future hold for these sites?

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), still cannot give a precise time line for the deterioration of many of the formats we currently rely on to store precious digital records. A recent report by NIST researcher Fred R. Byers notes that estimates vary from 20 to 200 years for popular media such as the CD and DVD, and even the low end of these estimates may be possible only under ideal environmental conditions that few historians are likely to reproduce in their homes or offices.

Digital preservation should be big business along with finding ways to properly discard the multitude of obsolete objects the world is in store for.

Blondes aren't throwing away their shoe boxes just yet!!

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