"The only reason that you can't open 25 year old documents is because you saved them in a proprietary format."
When I wrote that, I knew someone would try to dispute that. Sure, *.txt, woo.
Documents are about more than just text. I can't think of a common documentary format from 30 years ago that will support:
- embedded graphics
- complicated formatting - footnotes, etc. ...and still be commonly readable today.
For a piece of paper, it's not even a question.
PS, EPS, PDF, TIFF, JPEG, TXT, CSV, CSV
Yes TIFF and JPEG are image formats and marking them up has the same effect as writing with a pen on a document totay.
We didn't have much choice since we are dealing in times where the technology was not fully developed they did/do a better job of representing the printed word better than most new formats of today (saving a print file for an Epson printer will not print on a Brother unless you use a supported format which is what I'm saying). Saving a PS will print on any PS capable printer. My other comment was down moderated which to me is stupid since I have files that are from the 80's and 90's and they can still be printed today as they were back then. The printer at the time had the font and once set it would print in that font.
Today we have those plus ODT, ODS, and many others that are completely published and open. If you care to keep the work you do and don't wish to rely on one specific organization for your documents inform yourself.
I am not saying that it's better than paper. I'm just saying that if you wanted you could and you can.
As for paper if it is not taken care of then it too disappears. I can no longer find my kids pictures with Santa from 10 years ago. Documents become brittle if not kept in a proper place. They discolor if they are not protected from the light. If the paper is not intended for archiving it may just fall apart.
Moderators can mod me down all they want it won't change the fact that I do have old digital and paper documents which I can still read today.