Cultural heritage in the age of new media Yuhang zhou
“Binding time in digital civilizations: Re-evaluating Innis after new media ” Chris Chesher
According to Innis, The concepts of time and space reflect the significance of media to civilization. Media that emphasize time are those durable in character such as parchment, clay and stone. The heavy materials are suited to the development of architecture and sculpture. Media that emphasize space are apt to be less durable and light in character such as papyrus and paper.
According to Innis media bias theory, the author analyzes the computer complication from three levels:
Computers complicate media materiality Here he pays more attention on computer storage in terms of vulnerability, obsoleteness and incompatibleness.
languages and genres
Computers are often called convergent. It means computer put various narratives and databases together. Therefore, computer as a diversity platform contributes to new kinds of cultural complexity.
media and civilizations
Digital preservation and cultural heritage Some reasons of declination of cultural heritage sites
aggressive urban expansion,
Digital media have “the capacity to become a tool to capture both the tangible and intangible essence of both the culture heritage and the society that created or used the sites” (New Heritage Conference 2006)
advantages of digital preservation
Damaged palace Restored picture
Limitations of digital preservation
In the level of technology
"Digital materials are especially vulnerable to loss and destruction because they are stored on fragile magnetic and optical media that deteriorate rapidly and that can fail suddenly from exposure to heat, humidity, airborne contaminants, or faulty reading and writing devices." (Hedstrom and Montgomery 1998) “The problems surrounding the preservation of digital information include technological obsolescence. As formats, software, hardware, and storage media become obsolete, there is a risk that information becomes inaccessible and unusable. There are many others, including the ephemeral nature of much digital information. Information may change or disappear before it can be captured and preserved.” (Muir) "
floppy disks have been displayed by USB sticks
There have been several upgrades to Windows software since it was first introduced and it would now be very difficult to convert from earlier versions to the current versions;
Thousands of software programs common in the early 1990s are now extinct and unavailable.
In the level of art value
“The fabric of tradition”
The uniqueness of a work of art is inseparable from its being imbedded in the fabric of tradition. This tradition itself is thoroughly alive and extremely changeable. (Benjamin, 1936)
Bibliography Addison, A. C. (2008). The vanishing virtual: safeguarding heritage's endangered digital record. In Y.E.Kalay, New media and cultural heritage (pp. 27-39). USA: Routledge Benjamin, W. (1936). The work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction.In Illuminations, ed.HannahArendt.New York: schocken books. Feeney, M. (ed). (1999). Digital Culture: Maximising the Nation's Investment. London:The National Preservation Office. p.11. Also available online at: http://www.bl.uk/npo/ Hedstrom, M. and Montgomery, S. (1998). Digital Preservation Needs and Requirements in RLG Member Institutions. Mountain View CA: RLG. p. 3. www.oclc.org/programs/ourwork/past/digpresneeds/digpres.pdf
Kalay, Y. E. (2008). Introduction: preserving cultural heritage through digital media. In Y. E. Kalay, New media and cultural heritage (pp. 1-10). USA: Routledge.
Malpas, J. (2008). Cultural heritage in the age of new media. In Y. E. Kalay, New media and cultural heritage (pp. 13-26). USA: Routledge. Muir, A. (2004). digital preservation:awareness, responsibility and rights. journal of information science, 73.