paper tape archiving

Paul Koning paulkoning at
Wed Jul 29 16:27:17 CDT 2020

> On Jul 29, 2020, at 5:14 PM, Bill Degnan via cctech <cctech at> wrote:
> Hi all.
> I was wondering if there are any good online resources on reading for the
> purpose of archiving 8-bit papertapes of unknown origin.  I have been
> reading tapes as text and also as binary, 8/n/1 thinking that's going to
> capture everything.  I load into a hex editor, and if necessary convert to
> octal.
> I am wondering if there any persons who have a systematic process they'd
> like to share for this kind of work. I will share the tapes I have with the
> community, but there is no point if I am not doing it right.

The starting point is what you described: capture all 8 bits in every frame.  That includes any embedded 0 (blank tape) frames in the middle.  If the tape starts and ends with 0 frames, it's reasonable to omit those, but 0 in the middle is often actual data.

The other thing, of course, is to capture as accurately as possible any writing or labels on the tape and/or any container it comes in.


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