Coming Soon: A Revived Patch Bay

An "under construction" sign

As we quickly approach the one-year anniversary of the last time I updated this blog, a couple things have become clear to me:

  • the best burger in West Hartford can be found at Park & Oak, don’t listen to any bullshit about Plan B
  • I do not currently have the mental/emotional/sleep capacity to continue researching and writing technical posts here while working extensively during the day on emulation and EaaSI-related documentation

I’m extremely proud of The Patch Bay back catalog, particularly the evergreen posts on time, color, and audio in analog video that I cranked out last year during the Summer O’ Unemployment. And I’m thrilled that the day job I stumbled into still gives me the space to tinker, explore, create new resources for archivists and share – to the point that, for now, there have just been better platforms to disseminate the things I’ve been working on than the Patch Bay.

(Check out the EaaSI blog on the Software Preservation Network’s site, or tune in to our ongoing webinar series, to get what I mean!)

But! It’s made me sad to watch The Patch Bay drift into dormancy (he says, letting Netflix roll over to the next episode of “GLOW”). So it is time to fulfill my destiny as a millennial and become a content aggregator.

In all seriousness, thanks to Kelly Haydon for originally suggesting some time ago that The Patch Bay start taking guest posts, and for kicking things off by pointing me in the direction of some amazing student work that will start this new phase. In essence, I hope to turn this site into more of an editorial project, soliciting guest posts and working with the submitter to create something in the Patch Bay spirit of connecting preservation and technology.

So, in addition to a “stay tuned”, consider this post also a call for submissions! Have you written (or do you want to write) about a topic related to audiovisual and/or digital preservation? Have no blog of your own on which to post it? Send it over! Based on past material covered by The Patch Bay, topics might include, but are in no way limited to:

  • tutorials for using a particular piece of software or toolchain (i.e. several applications together in a workflow)
  • the history of analog and/or digital audiovisual technology
  • personal narrative pieces on the experience of using or learning about technical concepts in preservation
  • tips for equipment maintenance or repair
  • and so on!

A few guidelines to keep in mind:

  • I’m willing to look at/edit/post anything between ~1,000-5,000 words (my posts have averaged around 2,500, but, whatever, it’s a blog and I’m flexible!)
  • Whether starting from something you already have written or from scratch, we’ll work together in an OnlyOffice doc to get your post ready for prime time (copy editing, adding images, fleshing out or cutting things down)
  • I run this site in my free time, so please be patient in awaiting responses, edits, posts!
  • Unless otherwise noted, all content on The Patch Bay is posted under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license (CC-BY 4.0). If you have any objections or would like your content posted under a different license, I am open to discussion, but strongly encourage the use of Creative Commons or compatible copyleft licensing.

Benefits of submitting or posting on The Patch Bay!

  • Free web archiving services for your writing: when your post goes up, I’ll both submit a snapshot of the page to the Wayback Machine, and if desired, create and send you a WARC file of your post (backup/storage is on you from there)
  • Social media promotion: will boost each post to my ~70 Mastodon and ~500 Twitter followers, it’s not that many but only cool people allowed
  • Sometimes other people link and even assign your posts to read in classes or workshops and it feels good to know you’ve contributed to the shared knowledge of the the community?

If any of this interests you, or if you have more questions, feel free to get in touch by emailing ethan.t.gates (at), or DM’ing me on Mastodon or Twitter.

And if you’re just a loyal reader – watch this space!!!! Seriously, we’ve got some cool stuff coming soon.

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