Phone Booths Reincarnated As Bookshelves Finally Make Phone Booths Useful

Illustration for article titled Phone Booths Reincarnated As Bookshelves Finally Make Phone Booths Useful

If you pay close attention to the streets of any city, you might notice the boxy, armored shields that house telephones. Yes! Phone booths still exist. Of course no one ever uses them because everyone has a cell phone but yet they still stand, like unwavering artificial trees. But what if we convert phone booths to bookshelves? Hmm...


Think about it! Solving the obsolete technology of phone booths with another type of technology on the edge of obsolescence itself (books). How poetic is that? The project was started by New York architect John Locke who's been repurposing phone booths by installing plywood bookshelves within the booth's housing. The idea is to create a pop-up communal library for a city. It's a great idea! Well, it's a great idea in theory but I'm sure all the books will be stolen and never returned when let out. This is why we can't have good things. [John Locke via Design Boom]



Example: Historians discovered a carefully preserved book over 1000 years old. In order to allow researchers to study the book without the need to constantly touch the book (possibly damaging it), hi resolution digital scans were made. These scans were stored on special archival tape drives. 30 years later, the book was destroyed in a fire. The historians went to find their back up, only to discover that the tape drives had already deteriorated too much to restore the data.

Finding ways to store critical digital data over long periods of time is a reality that most large enterprises already face. What happens in 100 years when no paper copies were made? What will we lose as a civilization that increasingly struggles to maintain and update a vast amount of old digital data?

New is not always better. There are reasons why some technologies are still around today. They last.