Recording Preservation

Of course, there’s still the question of digital format and media preservation, but it’s a cool technology: Playing Old Records (No Needle Required)

The method involves no contact with the recording surface. After the camera does its work, image-processing algorithms take over, detecting scratches or spots of dust and deleting them. Then software simulates the stylus motion, and the results are converted to a digital sound format.

“The advantage of the method is that it is completely noncontact,” extracting information from the groove by mapping the surface, Dr. Haber said. “You take these pictures and it’s purely a software issue of how the recording is processed after that,” he said.

[…] One day a few years ago, a radio program that caught their attention prompted them to consider a new application. “We heard a show on National Public Radio on the problems of preserving delicate recordings of the past,” Dr. Haber said. He wondered whether the precision methods the group used for particle detectors might be of use. “Why not just measure the shape of the grooves on the surface?” Dr. Haber said, and then pose the question to a software program: what would a needle do?

The NYTimes’ Review of Sony Connect

From Sony, the Hits and Misses

But in its first incarnation, you’d never guess that this service comes from a company that’s both the world’s most recognized consumer-electronics brand and the owner of one of the world’s biggest record companies. For the time being, maybe they ought to call it Sony Disconnect.

Letter to the FCC

From the Hollywood Reporter: Hollywoodreporter.com

Five senators have sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission requesting that the panel investigate whether peer-to-peer file-sharing software companies are in violation of trade laws because they enable users to illegally download copyrighted material and pornography. The letter precedes the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection hearing on online pornography scheduled for today. The bipartisan letter was signed by Sens. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, and Gordon Smith, R-Ore. The senators claim that P2P services promote “potentially unfair and deceptive trade practices that mislead and endanger.”

A recent hearing before this subcommittee: Spyware: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You