A thought about archives. I searched a digital archive at work today and noticed its oldest documents went back to 1998 and 1999. Noticing that, I meta-noticed how old those documents seemed. Five or six years feels at once like nothing—my life has changed little in that time; my sense of the ambient culture, likewise—and somehow epochal. For example, Google did not exist at all six years ago, and “Bushies” meant “Australian outback types” or didn’t mean anything, but Massive Attack was still cool.

A well-maintained future archive may hold fifty years of documents, as well as a whole lot of other digitized stuff. The thought I had was, How old will stuff from 1999 seem in a fifty-year archive?

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