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Posted by Mark Hine at 11:44AM   |  Add a comment

Digital content is, almost without exception, a computer file. If you think about the flexibility of a computer file, reaching back perhaps to your interactions with DOS and file based computing, the commands COPY, RENAME, DELETE, MOVE, and SAVE may come to mind. These basic file commands represent the fundamental ease at which digital content can be stored, transferred and manipulated. The act of digitizing analog content provides us with this flexibility and, with care, sustains the content in a more durable form. Photos, documents, video, audio and artifacts can all be captured in one manner or another to preserve a digital copy.

Digital imaging (scanning, photography) has come a long way in the past ten years with capture results nearly imperceptible from the analog original. One facet of digital imaging that is unique is the idea of non-destructive editing. We can make a copy of a digital photo for example - make changes or edits, crop, rotate, re-color and re-size all without affecting the original. In short there is no control-z (command-z for Mac users) in the analog world. That's the 'undo' command for the uninitiated!

Digitizing analog content provides additional flexibility when sharing or presenting content. Sending via e-mail, uploading to a drop-box service, inserting into presentation software (PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi) and building complex multimedia are just a few uses for digitized content as components. Of course saving, deleting, compressing and other file based actions also underline the flexibility and mobility of digital content.

For best results, the resolution of the digitizing process must be carefully considered. How large should the object be when printed or displayed? What are the file storage requirements? What are the file format requirements? And finally, should the content be archived and how?

For assistance with these and other digital content questions, contact Digital Media Services. E-mail us at dms@ithaca.edu

 


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