Last week, on the 8th I attended this years second Humanities Department Seminar Series at Melbourne Museum called ‘Museums, libraries and galleries must be more than just the ‘Rosetta Stones’ of material culture’, given by David Demant.

At first David made me think I’d stumbled into a Sociology lecture with his talk of semantics and language usage… but then he started making sense. See David was stressing the point that museums, libraries and galleries need to be aware of how they label things, of how they classify or catalogue objects and information, because language changes over time.

What’s the point in having the best descriptions and titles for our museum artefacts or digital documents if in 100 years from now, they can not be put into context because the language used to describe them is lost? Makes one think we should start storing a dictionary for every year along with our digital information!

David suggested that the Coptic language was like a key to the Rosetta stone, what will be the key to our digital information? What will help unlock our digital codes in future if the software to read it is no longer available?

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Till next time!
DFTBA (Don’t Forget to be Awesome)

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