RD: All right, our food is coming, future transcriber. You know, it’s interesting, the idea that you could collapse something as big as a decade, whether of your life or of a magazine —
PF: Well, the reality is, the decade of Wag’s Revue in terms of digital data is trivial.
RD: Well, right, and that’s what I mean! The compression is sort of impressive.
PF: It’s text, right? Even if it’s images of text, it’s still not that big. When you think about it, text is an amazing medium. We came up with that and we kept figuring ways to squeeze it tighter and tighter, and get more and more of it on the page, even when that page was parchment.
We’re kind of cashing in on that, with computers. There’s nothing technical about a computer, it just happens to be good at moving really quickly. We basically connected letters to numbers, and that got us all sorts of stuff. That got us search.
The reality is that the costs of a 6-year archive in perpetuity are fairly minimal; they probably wouldn’t approach more than $100 a year. The number one thing is, who is going to take responsibility for this?
PF: And that’s actually really tricky. I’ve been thinking about that, because a friend of mine told me about how New York City foster kids have all their documents in bags, and …
RD: Did you say in bags?
PF: Bags; like they go from place to place, when they’re in the system, and they don’t have a place to stay. They literally go from place to place with garbage bags of their stuff. That’s where they’re at. It’s really sad. It’s really tough, and they don’t have memories. They don’t have pictures of the people they lived with when they were 3 or 4.