BBC – Being Backward CompatiblePosted: 23-February-2009
Just how important is it for something to be backward compatible and what is the price that one pays for the same.
A while ago, I was speaking to a librarian and her major grouse was against all of my kin (i.e. technology people). As much as i tried to convince her that digitization on content (books) was a good thing, she was resistant to my well thought arguments. Finally in despair, i asked her for her reasons and they were simple.
She has digitized some content a few years (read 15) ago in a particular format that was prevalent then. Since then the company that sold her the software and hardware was no more and the digitized content was effectively useless. Someone, obviously came long and suggested that she run a migration project to move the content to the latest digital format :-). Her theory was very simple – The book was written and printed 60 years ago. Nothing has changed as far as that printed book is concerned. Technology has not made it redundant. You could read the book in the same fashion 60 years ago as you can do now and gain as much knowledge and/or enjoyment from the same. BBC is needed at the bare minimum to ensure that simple investments are not lost this easily.
In recent times I have seen advertisements for DVD players that claim to play almost anything. The ad show the domestic help putting a roti (pita bread) to play that as well. Now here I seriously wish someone could make a device that is capable of playing everything from the cutting edge blue-ray DVDs to the grand collection of vinyl that I have inherited from my dad. Currently I have at least 4 devices in the house that play music/movies from disc shaped objects. BBC within a device would make my wife VERY happy –Is someone listening?