Google’s Vint Cerf warns of ‘digital Dark Age’

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Vint Cerf, a “father of the internet”, says he is worried that all the images and documents we have been saving on computers will eventually be lost.

Currently a Google vice-president, he believes this could occur as hardware and software become obsolete.

He fears that future generations will have little or no record of the 21st Century as we enter what he describes as a “digital Dark Age”.

Mr Cerf made his comments at a large science conference in San Jose.

“Start Quote

Even if we accumulate vast archives of digital content, we may not actually know what it is”

Vint CerfWeb pioneer and Google VP

He arrived at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science stylishly dressed in a three-piece suit. This iconic figure, who helped define how data packets move around the net, is possibly the only Google employee who wears a tie.

I felt obliged to thank him for the internet, and he bowed graciously. “One is glad to be of service,” he said humbly.

His focus now is to resolve a new problem that threatens to eradicate our history.

Our life, our memories, our most cherished family photographs increasingly exist as bits of information – on our hard drives or in “the cloud”. But as technology moves on, they risk being lost in the wake of an accelerating digital revolution.

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Updated: February 16, 2015 — 6:20 pm

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