Slow Fires in Technologies

From ElateWiki

The concept of "slow fires" elegantly refers to the aging out of paper-stored information through the disintegration that comes with time and weathering. These same ideas apply to digital technologies, which have faster aging-out cycles than paper. The updating of authoring tools, digital file readers, and various platforms all have effects on digital information.

It wasn't that long ago when contents were stored on heavy magnetic storage devices that took two hands to wield. And then in terms of desktop storage, there was the 5.25" floppy disks and various other types leading to the present time of thumb drives and miniaturized external hard drives.



Slow fires may affect the readability of files. Without the equipment to extract machine and human-readable information from the various storage devices, that information all may be gone. Files also need to be openable or readable. Over time, many files may corrupt, so even with the originating version of the software that created those files, those files may not be readable.

File Type Creatability

Authoring tools also need to be solidly designed to be able to access prior versions of particular file types. Given the need for constantly updating files, files that are read-only have very limited usage. Part of their functionality has disappeared into slow fires.

Changing Software Companies

With the high economic competition, software companies may come and go, and with them, their various product lines. Going with a defunct company's software and contents is a fast way to feed the slow fires. Companies with volatile pricing structures also force interventions to protect digital contents, with often forced needs to transition off of various proprietary systems.

Some Effects

These factors all force a confluence to larger companies and open-source non-proprietary softwares that create files that are platform agnostic.

See Also