Born Digital to Microfilm

The Government Records Branch has just posted information on “The Conversion of Electronic Records to Microfilm” (pdf). To quote the new guidelines:

Using the Kodak Document Archive Writer Model 9620, the North Carolina State Archives is now able to offer a fee-based service, which enables state government agencies to convert scanned images or “born digital” records—those created solely in digital form—to archival microfilm for low-cost, long-term storage and access.

The State Archives offers this service because microfilm processed in accordance with archival standards is a stable, low-risk medium that can enhance the survivability of digital files over time. Digital files are a series of 1s and 0s that need to be mounted onto hardware loaded with the correct software to make them readable to the human eye. Microfilm can always be read by the human eye and is therefore protected from technological obsolescence.