“Turn me over, I’m done on this side!”

A couple weeks ago the archives start-up I am involved with had what we called a “friendraiser”. It was basically a cocktail in order to network, get the word out about ourselves, and ask other archivists for feedback. We also gave a presentation. The event didn’t go entirely as planned (but what does?), so we decided we needed a patron saint for our company. I suggested Saint Lawrence. He is one of three patrons of archivists that I know of, plus it makes sense geographically. Everyone liked that so we adopted him as our patron.

St. Lawrence was a 3rd-century Roman martyr who was roasted on a gridiron and is supposed to have said, “Turn me over, I’m done on this side!” So I got to thinking, gee, wouldn’t it be funny if, for our logo, we had a drawing of a small scanner with the top up, showing a document on the glass, obviously in the process of being digitised, and obviously two-sided, since there would be a speech bubble and it would be saying, “Turn me over, I’m done on this side!”

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In Terra Viventium

It’s always interesting when I join the land of the living, technology-wise. I’m not really anti-technology. It just takes me a long time to be convinced that something new is actually better. Once I see that, then I like it, provided that it is in fact better.

Recent adventures in the technological land of the living include trying to get pictures off my cell phone. For the first time.

“Other people do this. How hard can it be?”

Well. Allow me to present the Table of Contents to the hypothetical volume detailing said adventures:

Chapter 1, in which I take a picture with my cell phone and successfully send it as a text message, and assume I am now a sufficiently modern person. This was last year, btw. Ahem.

Chapter 2, in which I now have a bunch of pictures on my cell phone and then realize I have no idea how people get pictures off their phone.

Chapters 3-6, in which I ask one of my sisters. She says she uses a USB cable. I realize I don’t have one small enough to fit my phone. “Can I text you these pictures and then you download them and email them back to me?” She says sure. Somehow the settings got changed, which I don’t remember doing, and the files are now too large to send as MMS.

Chapter 7, in which I add “get micro USB cable” to my perpetual to-do list. It stays there for a very long time.

Chapter 8, in which a colleague and I go look at a building we might want to use as an archives repository. Did I think to bring my camera? No. Phone camera it is. “Oh well, this will force me to finally go get that USB cable.”

Chapters 9-15, in which the nice lady at the phone store says a memory card would have been easier. I get one for the future, but it doesn’t help me now. I go somewhere else and buy a micro USB cable. Why is this not working? Email some friends in desperation. Apparently the USB settings on my phone were helpfully set to “off”. Turn them on. File shows up on computer as “empty.” I start wondering how much chocolate it will take to turn my mood around.

Chapter 16, in which I am fiddling around with the individual photos and decide to try to this modern thing called “Bluetooth”. Many adventures ensue here but suffice it to say I finally figured it out – all by myself – and got the files transferred to my computer.