zetcom has supported the National Museum of Norway in archiving its collection of around 400,000 art and cultural treasures in the Arctic World Archive. The aim is to preserve cultural treasures in digital form for future generations.

 

In the arctic north of Europe, between the Norwegian mainland and the North Pole, lies Svalbard. Here, digital copies of artworks, documents and software are stored in a former coal mine.

Since 2017, the Arctic World Archive has been preserving cultural heritage that will be important for future generations. Deep under the permafrost soil of the Norwegian island, conditions here are favorable for long-term data storage.

The Arctic World Archive already contains digital copies from the Vatican library as well as copies of the Gutenberg Bible and the Ambras Book of Heroes. International delegations from Brazil, China, Mexico, Russia, Spain and South Korea have deposited documents in the Arctic World Archive.

Software is also stored in Svalbard. The source codes of operating systems such as Linux, MS-DOS or the programming languages Python and Ruby are stored here as a backup for future generations.

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Since autumn 2020, data from one of our clients has also been stored in the Arctic World Archive. We supported the National Museum of Norway in storing its collection of around 400,000 art and cultural treasures in the Arctic World Archive in the form of a MuseumPlus database.

The National Museum's collection includes Edvard Munch's "The Scream" and important works of Nordic and international art, architecture and design.

The National Museum of Norway has been working with MuseumPlus software since 2019. In MuseumPlus all information on the art objects in the museum's collections is recorded. This creates digital files in which artworks, such as the Edvard Munch's painting, are deeply documented.

The MuseumPlus database thus contains general information on each of the 400,000 art objects, as well as information on their storage and transport, the history of the exhibitions, as well as conservation and restoration measures.

"The cultural heritage of the National Museum of Norway will still be relevant in 500 years," explains Dominik Gertsch, Head of Sales and Marketing at zetcom. "So it is important to secure the collection and its data in the long term. With the digital archiving in the Arctic World Archive, the National Museum is taking on a pioneering role, which we, as software partner, can enthusiastically support. The result is a long-term process for keeping cultural treasures available in digital form for future generations."

For the storage of data in the Arctic World Archive, the Norwegian company Piql has developed a robust storage medium: analog film rolls. Images, text and other file formats are converted into a binary format and written as QR code on a Piql film.

Around 120 gigabytes fit onto a film roll, which is packed in a protective cover to protect it from air, water, fire and other influences. The deposited film rolls are expected to survive for at least 500 years in the vault in Svalbard.

(Photos: Vidar Ibenfeldt, National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design / Unsplash)

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