In developing a new project on my site, I am forced to think about archiving my work and archives in general. This comes recently after Ev Bogue & Gwen Bell deleted their sites and switched to inboxes and after I switched to Facebook’s timeline.
Archives, I sort of believe are an idea of the past, print world. Online, we’re usually in the NOW, what are people saying/doing on twitter now? What is my most recent post, our posts can easily be lost and forgotten when we become used to solely working in the present (which isn’t a bad thing.)
When facebook introduced timeline, I was shell shocked at first. I can see everything I’ve done since joining in 05. I can see how childish I looked then, ho drunk I looked in 07, I can see how my hair’s changed, my art, my writing, my musical taste, friends gained and lost-it’s all right there in my face, which means my friends can all see it too.
At first I was terrified and embarrassed. But then I felt pretty good after sitting with it for a while. I’ve changed so much, my life has changed. I’ve evolved, it’s a clear chronicle of my evolution the last 7 years of my life. AHA! I thought, that’s why we still exist in archives. I can use them as an example-look I was a lazy, drunk, asshole with no prospects, hobbies or talents outside partying. I’ve completely changed, I’m an example that anyone can.
I believe that motivation/inspiration are active processes and seeing an archive of past work builds motivation. Look what I’m doing! Reading over previous work helps me to develop new ideas in the same way reading past journals does.
There is a point and a use for archives still. Will this change in the future? Probably, the net evolves daily.