This project began as an investigation into video playback machines. Where do people acquire legacy playback equipment? How do people learn about obsolete technologies? Is anyone working on building “new” equipment for the purpose of accessing, preserving, and digitizing media? Unfortunately, the days of video are numbered. The general public does not have an interest in its preservation which leads to machines being thrown away everyday. Machines that weren’t made for home-use can be large, expensive, and those who know how to use them may not be around much longer. The diversity of video formats makes it difficult to be in expert in very many of them. And it is just not profitable to explore building new machines for video. I began to hear a lot of the same answers from professionals around town, we are running out of time, and can only do the best we can. In this video, I interview three AV professionals who are grappling with these issues at their institutions.
Alicia Esquivel is a recent graduate with a MS in Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin. She enjoys studying objects from the past to gain understanding of social, political and economic climates. This interest in history led to a passion for preservation practices. She recently relocated to Chicago to pursue a career in libraries, archives and museums.