Dig Report

Initial findings are promising, though we hope to carry out further research in order to fully ascertain the origin of the artefacts uncovered so far. These appear to be cultural goods, most likely primitive digital commodities as were commonly available during the late 20th century (i.e. just prior to the so-called 'Blackout' period of dematerialisation). Initial theories of these artefacts as being part of a votive deposit have now largely been ruled out.

We have yet to determine the type of encodings used, as they match no known current data types. One theory that has been posited is the possibility to decode the data present using one of the early pre-holographic methods, possibly through the optical demodulation of a pulse-code data stream (infra red?). Given the size and dimensions of the artefact, it is presumed (or at least claimed by one of my colleagues!) to spin during the decoding process, though as always, it would be prudent to keep assumptions to a minimum whilst we uncover more information to test the veracity of these claims. As for the type of data contained on the disc, we are almost certain there is an audio component, as implied by the markings inscribed on the upper surface, but given our knowledge of the video storage methods of the era we doubt any presence of a video component.

We suspect a variety of similar artefacts may be uncovered once expansion of the dig site has been approved, but knowing how long these bureaucratic procedures can take, it may be weeks before we can continue. However, two of the three artefacts have already been quickly earmarked by research institutes (one in London, the other in Somerville, MA), so there is still one disc remaining in our possession, which we will continue to study until that is inevitably also sold, either for exhibition or research.

© 2002–2023 Christopher Leary
Header image: Understory cover art, by Guy Warley.