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Four Ways to Avoid the Digital Dark Age

I love learning about the past. My History channel subscription is on regular rotation on the PVR and an afternoon on cruising around Wikipedia sounds like a good time to me. I’ve always had this deep appreciation for historical documents and artifacts that help tell a story.  They give us insight into the life and times of those who came before us. It is that very history that helped spark my love of photography.

How to avoid the digital dark age

And it is that same love that makes me sad when I think about all of the things we could lose in a digital dark age. The Digital Dark Age is the predication that documents and photos that we have now will be lost in the future because they have been stored in an obsolete digital format. Think of old home movies on film cameras. If someone didn’t roll them over to a newer digital format, they will get less & less play every year. It would be awful to lose all those precious photos of family memories and good times you have stored on your computer could be lost, simply because how you have chosen to store them becomes outdated.

To help you prevent your own family memories from being lost in a digital dark age, here are a few suggestions to make sure you have your photos for years to come:

1.  Print your photos. Make an effort to print your favorite photos. You can even print your Instagram photos. It doesn’t matter if you just store your prints in a photo box or frame them; nothing will beat having actual photos in your hands!

2.  Make an album. A great album captures the stories behind the photos beautifully and will become an heirloom in your family.

3. Take photos with a non-digital camera. Buy a film camera and take images that you need to develop. This doesn’t need to be complicated – spring for a Fuji Instamax camera. Instant photos are fun and often create some of your favorite images. It doesn’t get easier than instant.

4. Store your photos in multiple places. The best way to keep your digital files safe is to back-up your photos regularly & on more than one device such a passenger hard drive, an online back-up and even an actual DVD. Keeping your photos backed up in a couple different places, in a couple of different ways, helps fight off losing your files.

Taking even one of these steps ideas will help you keep your photos safe for many years to come.