Scanning question (Is destruction of old tech docs a moral crime?)

Cindy Croxton sales at
Sun Jul 21 21:50:43 CDT 2019

Send an email to a11anmah0n2y at for the 026 manual. He has 029s, 
as well as the service manual for the 029.

He has a friend who worked on all these machines until the early 2000s.

He will give you the fellow's email address for the 026 info you want.


On 7/21/19 9:07 PM, Guy Dunphy via cctalk wrote:
> At 01:48 AM 21/07/2019 -0400, Paul Birkel wrote:
>> If I may summarize/generalize, Guy, I think that your point is that there
>> are Technical Artifacts and there are Cultural Artifacts -- and the two sets
>> overlap to some degree.  Where the overlap lies is subject to great debate,
>> IMO.
> Indeed. Complicating factors are:
>   * Technical artifacts/documents can be essential tools, required to maintain
>     other things, of either interest, or actual critical dependencies of activities.
>   * The boundary of what tech items are *important* can shift depending on
>     large scale economic/cultural events. In certain potentially possible
>     future scenarios, they may shift a *lot*. Someone jokingly mentioned the
>     'John Titor searching for a specific old computer' legend, but such scenarios
>     (minus the time travel) are quite conceivable.
>   * As opposed to cultural items, tech items have an extra attribute: still works or not.
>     Which is very important. Unless they are demonstrably working, understanding of
>     their functions and use can become mythologised, and lose veracity and context.
>   These are much less likely to apply to purely cultural artefacts.
>   No one is going to die, or starve, or whatever, if say the Mona Lisa was lost.
>   I recommend a book "The collapse of complex societies" by Tainter.
>> Most of us probably wouldn't destroy a Cultural Artifact (e.g., Taliban
>> destruction of Buddha of Bamiyan statue) but many might destroy a Technical
>> Artifact in the belief that its overt information content defines its value,
>> and that one that value has been captured digitally the Technical Artifact
>> effectively lives on in that form.  The corpus is merely that ...
> Even if the digital version _did_ fully capture the information content, I
> strongly dispute that the physical item/document has lost it's value.
> That 'digital is all we need' viewpoint is a trap for the naive, because:
>    1. No one can ever fully trust the validity of any digital work.
>       Trusting such things to be 'true' demonstrates a foolish assumption that
>       there are no hostile actors, who'd ever wish to deceive and mislead.
>       (Shows a collossal blindness to historical reality, and contemporary politics.)
>    2. Relying on digital records assumes that the human race will never have
>       any kind of 'technical interruption', in which digital storage hardware
>       can't be maintained, with the necessary continual refreshing and updating.
>       Ever tried to get a 20 year old hard disk going and recover the data?
>       _Sometimes_ it's possible, if it was stored in perfect conditions.
>       Flash memory, EPROMS, CDs, DVDs, etc, all are ephemeral.
>> At what point do you believe that a "mere" Technical Artifact becomes a
>> Cultural one -- where the latter presumptively comes accompanied by a
>> Requirement to Preserve?
> Now we get to a critical point.
> There's no chance of defining any specific cutoff criteria. It's a question on which
> everyone will always differ. And this is why 'centralization is bad.'  If remaining
> technical historical artefacts/books are allowed to be gathered into central archives,
> then it's only a matter of time before those items will be destroyed. Accidents, deliberate
> subversion, stupidity, financial upsets, natural disasters... But most often by some
> official unilaterally deciding 'these items are not worth preserving.'
> Museums are OK, and it's good to make things publicly viewable, but only if there are _many_.
> The best way to preserve any kind of history (tech or cultural) is for the physical items
> to remain many and well distributed among private individuals who value them. Then even
> in the event of some kind of widespread pogrom (not inconceivable with today's insane
> Leftist herd mentality developments) there will be people who quietly preserve things.
> In such times any kind of public museum/library institutions are toast. (And btw my wife
> lived through the Pol Pot genocide in Cambodia, don't argue with me on this one. Or I will
> tell you some stories that will give you nightmares.)
> The necessity to preserve multiple redundancy, is why destroying a hardcopy of a 'rare-ish'
> manual in order to scan it, is so bad. Especially when the tendency to do that has become
> widespread, so there's a high rate of attrition of whatever do remain in private hands.
>> Being the "last known survivor" of a particular piece of hardcopy seems both
>> an inadequate basis for determination in general, and operationally it's a
>> pretty weak method since "last known" becomes dependent on a Registry of
>> sorts (and likely requires good provenance to preclude forgeries, else
> There can never be such a registry, and even to try making one would be unwise
> since it just creates a 'burn list' for anyone who decided to wipe parts of history.
> The term 'last known survivor' is short hand for 'Gee I can't find any references to
> others of this item/book.' There probably are some, just not visible. And that's as
> it should be.
> For eg I have a quite old book, that a specific national group would greatly prefer did
> not exist. Since it destroys a foundation of their lying political narative.
> There is ONE reference I can find to another copy, and that's in the stack of a major public library.
> It's one of the top items on my 'to scan' list, once I have the capability to scan fat books without
> damaging them. In the meantime, it shall remain nameless.
> Others may have copies. No way to tell. I have to assume that my copy might be, or become, the last.
>> In your perspective is Artistic Merit an important consideration in
>> determining Cultural value, and thus Requirement to Preserve?  How does one
>> judge that?
> Like Art. One knows it when it is encountered. A totally personal call. And this is good,
> because it preserves diversity of content.
>> As much as I like hardcopy Technical Artifacts for various reasons, I have
>> difficulty with the concept that all hardcopy, even the very last known
>> original, is worth (in the ROI sense, to include proper archiving and
>> maintenance) preserving.
> Well you should take that up with your great-great-great grandchildren, when they want to
> know what today's tech (and its manuals) were really like.
>> I'm reminded a bit of "A Canticle for Leibowitz"!
> A great story. But also an example of how off the rails a single institution can go, in terms
> of preserving information about technology. Without working examples.
> BTW. I have three IBM 026 card punch machines as a future restoration project. But can I find
> a service manual? No. None online, only one for the later 028. And even if there was a PDF
> I expect it would be the usual terrible quality.
> Does anyone have a physical copy they would sell? Or as my last resort, loan?
> Ditto for a service/schematics manual for the Documation TM200 punch card reader. No copy can be found.
> Guy

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