The Rosetta Project is The Long Now Foundation’s first exploration into very long-term archiving. It serves as a means to focus attention on the problem of digital obsolescence, and ways we might address that problem through creative archival storage methods.
Our first prototype of a very long-term archive is The Rosetta Disk – a three inch diameter nickel disk with nearly 14,000 pages of information microscopically etched onto its surface. Since each page is an image, rather than a digital encoding of 1’s and 0’s, it can be read by the human eye using 500 power optical magnification. The disk rests in a sphere made of stainless steel and glass which allows the disk exposure to the atmosphere, but protects it from casual impact and abrasion. With minimal care, it could easily last and be legible for thousands of years.
What kind of information should go into a very long term archive? One can imagine many possibilities: A collection of the world’s greatest literature, known cures for the diseases that plague humanity, blueprints for recreating major technology… all of these would be appropriate in a collection we might like to leave for future generations to come centuries, even millennia hence.
The information above can be found on the official website of Rosetta Project. For more details about the organization and to find out how you can volunteer, please visit their website: http://rosettaproject.org