About the Computer Archaeology Laboratory


Where are we?

Computer Archaeology Laboratory
Flinders University at Tonsley
1284 South Road, Level 3
Tonsley, SA 5042
Ph: +61 8 - 8201 2675 (school office)
College of Science and Engineering
enquiries@csem.flinders.edu.au

Who are we?

Welcome to the Computer Archaeology Laboratory

You may well be wondering “what is computer archaeology”?

It is the science (and art) of recovering computer data encoded and/or encrypted in now obsolete media or formats.

It is not merely data recovery, that is, migrating from old media formats to newer ones. It is ensuring data intelligibility. You may be able to recover the data, but not access it or understand its content. For computer archaeology to be successful, the data must be intelligible.

As hardware and software become obsolete, we are facing a “digital dark age”, where we will not have a record of our history both scientific and cultural.

The Computer Archaeology Laboratory not only has the tools to create disk images of obsolete media, but thanks to many generous donors, the Computer Archaeology Laboratory has a small collection of a range of computer systems from 1980s through to early 2000s, personal computers and games consoles. We do not yet have all systems and will gratefully accept donations.

These are employed for cross-disciplinary experimental research and teaching using obsolete tools, hardware, software and platforms to develop methods and tools to conserve, preserve and maintain access to born digital artefacts such as literature, art, and research data.