Tuesday Tech: When Irreplaceable History Lives on Obsolete Tech

What happens when irreplaceable history lives on obsolete tech?


This is a question that many of us who lived through the popularity of the Walkman, floppy disk and record player can relate to. What will we do with all of that amazing stuff we’ve collected but can no longer use?

We hope to provide an answer to these questions with the Info Commons’ newly acquired tools.

               What tools are you using to preserve your history?             

"Cory Arcangel, a Brooklyn, New York–based artist, was watching a video from 1985 on YouTube (below) in which artist Andy Warhol generates a "painting" of Blondie lead singer Debbie Harry on an early Amiga computer, when he wondered, what became of these files? After a quick message to the Andrew Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, he found out: Sitting in the archives, yet to be catalogued, was a series of 3.5-inch floppy disks.

The Computer Club at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh set about retrieving and saving Warhol’s mid-’80s digital experiments. When they succeeded this spring, headlines heralded the achievement for reviving unseen works of one of the 20th century’s best-known artists.

But it also brings up a good question: How much more irreplaceable information, whether historical treasures or family moments, resides on obsolete formats, decaying in archives and closets? And even if the information is salvageable, what happens if we’ve already lost the software or hardware needed to read it?”

Continue reading here.


The so-called Big Five publishers — Penguin Random House, Macmillan, HarperCollins, Hachette and Simon & Schuster — don’t appear to be participating in Kindle Unlimited, Amazon’s new e-book subscription service.

Following the model of services such as Oyster and Scribd, Kindle Unlimited offers unlimited e-books for a fixed monthly fee. Searches through Kindle Unlimited’s library of 600,000-plus titles turn up bestsellers from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, W.W. Norton, Scholastic and other publishers, but no titles from the five major houses. Amazon’s recent dispute with Hachette has highlighted tensions between online retailer and traditional publishers. HarperCollins declined to comment, while Amazon and the other four publishers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

More book news here.

The Wednesday Biz: More BPL Business Library Events

Building a Website: Today’s Essential Marketing Tool

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 6:30P

Central Library, Dweck Center

Marketing expert Santos Morales will explain how to build a site for your business that draws attention, increases sales and keeps customers coming back.

Putting Your Website to Work: New Strategies for Increasing Sales

Tuesday, July 29, 2014 6:30PM

Central Library, Dweck Center

Jennefer Gustaffson of the LDC of East New York will detail how to unlock the power of your website with search engine optimization.

SCORE One-on-One Business Counseling

SCORE  provides free business counseling with volunteers trained by the Small Business Administration.  Experienced business people offer private, one-hour sessions of business coaching.  Appointments are available Monday through Friday; please see the schedule below.

SCORE counseling will only be available at the Information Commons, 10 Grand Army Plaza during the summer period from June 16th through Sept. 30th 2014.

You may schedule an appointment with SCORE by calling the Business Library Reference Desk, 718.623.7000, press “3” during the hours that a reference librarian is available (8:00AM - 1:00 PM).  Walk-in sessions may be available if scheduling permits.

Tuesday Tech: Make Your Own Photo Booth with a Raspberry Pi


Sink your teeth into some meaty tech with this Make Your Own Photo Booth With a Raspberry Pi project, via -@drumminhands

What is a raspberry pi?

"The Raspberry Pi is a low cost, credit-card sized computer that plugs into a computer monitor or TV, and uses a standard keyboard and mouse. It is a capable little device that enables people of all ages to explore computing, and to learn how to program in languages like Scratch and Python. It’s capable of doing everything you’d expect a desktop computer to do, from browsing the internet and playing high-definition video, to making spreadsheets, word-processing, and playing games.”

Very cool stuff!