Well spring is well and truly here - at least in England - and over Easter we had the warmest day in April since 1949; the weather forecasters always have to make a fuss over any weather which is out of the ordinary...
The advent of spring brings along the traditional task of 'spring cleaning' and this time around, office computer equipment has fallen under the spotlight. Having replaced a number of computers over the last few years, on the basis that they were getting old (four years or more) and could fail at anytime causing potential catastrophic loss of data, they were stored in case there was any important data on the drives. Not having needed anything from them since they were removed from service, the logical thing to do is to 'security data-clean' the hard drives and sell them as a working, but old machine. Having downloaded Dban.exe from www.dban.org (this is a free disk cleaning program), I started the process of wiping the disks clean. Before pressing the button at the point of no-return, I had this sudden thought - "Are there any files that I may want in the future? Have I copied off all my files? Did the computer store files in the wrong directory because I did not change to the correct directory before saving? Are there any important downloaded files in a remote Windows directory?" Too late, they're gone now!
This brings me round to another point about my 'favourite' subject, digital photography. I did have photos stored on a couple of computers, and I am sure that I had copied them off - somewhere, but having numerous 'safe' storage areas on various computers and drives, I don't know where, but I am sure they are there somewhere...
Even with secure, periodic data storage and rewriting, unnoticed data corruption could be transferred from copy to copy. It could go unnoticed until after the original had long gone. Negatives and transparencies are susceptible to destruction like everything else but they are more easily retrieved than a data file; just one corrupt data bit can make a file unreadable.
Anyway, if I have obliterated any valuable files, I will never know. I do know that over the years (not many in the scheme of things), hardware has become obsolete and files unreadable by the next generation of equipment. I know that many of my files have been lost that way. I understand that Microsoft no longer supports Windows XP service pack 2 and older software; Sage (accounting software) has now been changed so that it will no longer run on Windows XP SP2. Who is controlling obsolescence?
Front Cover: The Divinity School by David Morgan
3 Seen in Passing by David Morgan
3 Your Forum
4 The Members of rollei.org.uk by Andrew Dodson
6 Presenting Medium Format Slides by Wolfram Borgis
8 The Rolleiflex as an Icon, by Emmanuel Bigler
16 Oxford Meeting April 2011 by David Morgan
20 The South Downs Way National Trail by John Wild L.R.P.S.
24 Your Forum continued
28 A Little Giant Called Harry by Jim Graves
28 Your Forum continued
29 Auction note
30 Call Yourself a Photographer by Jim Graves
31 Copy old photos with your multi-function printer by Ian Parker
Hereford Cathedral, City Centre and Castle Green from the air by Derek Foxton
Blenheim Clock Tower, by Peter Moyse