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Help & guidance Guides to Good Practice

Deciding what to archive

Kieron Niven, Archaeology Data Service / Digital Antiquity, Guides to Good Practice

Vector images are often created in archaeology as a step within a larger project workflow either as the output from a data processing application or as a stage towards producing high quality illustrations. In both cases such files represent the creation of a ‘final product’ image, usually for inclusion within a project report, and many are often formatted in terms of a printed page. A further step may even see vector images rasterised as JPG or TIFF files prior to their inclusion within a document. It is therefore important for the data creator to evaluate the importance of the vector image within the workflow and to decide whether the file in question has reuse value in that particular format. In cases where the image exists in both its source (e.g. CAD) and derived (e.g. raster images) forms then it may be decided that the vector image is not retained and archived.

In addition to the image itself, many vector image applications allow the inclusion of scripts (e.g. JavaScript, AppleScript or VBScript in Illustrator[1]) within files. Scripting within such files aims to automate or simplify tasks at the creation or editing stage and are not considered to be a core component of the vector image. If such scripts are seen as being worth preserving then they should be stored and documented separately to the image.