Barcodes, smart cards, radio frequency identification (RFID), biometrics, and magnetic stripe are technologies that encompass the rapidly evolving science and industry of Automatic Identification and Data Capture (AIDC). This field of high technology uses the latest advances in scanning and computer processes to capture information quickly and accurately in an automated manner. AIDC technology is ubiquitous, from driver's licenses to credit cards, and it is revolutionizing the way we live.
But who is recording the history and documenting the work of the scientists, businesses, and organizations that are developing these technologies? That was the concern of George and Teddy Goldberg when they approached Stony Brook University in the late 1990s about establishing an archive. As pioneers in the field of AIDC and publishers of SCAN Newsletter, the industry's first trade publication, the couple wanted to ensure that the past and the future of AIDC would be documented and preserved.
Stony Brook University Libraries understood the need to collect, catalog, and make this unique history accessible and entered into a partnership with AIDC 100, a nonprofit organization comprised of the top 100 automatic information and data capture professionals. In 2000, Special Collections established an archive of record for Automatic Identification and Data Capture and is one of only a few institutions in the United States that is actively acquiring materials pertaining to this field.
The AIDC 100 Archives now provides the university community and the public with a comprehensive record of the history and current state of AIDC. The collection is comprised of the personal papers of leaders in the industry, trade publications, journals, books, and artifacts. All formats, including print, microform, audio, visual, and digital, are accepted into the archive. Engineers, computer scientists, and visiting scholars regularly consult the documents located within the personal papers of George Goldberg, Richard Meyers, Allan Gilligan, and Paul Bergé. Special Collections anticipates receiving approximately 100 cubic feet of new material per year over the course of the next five years.
The AIDC 100 has established a $200,000 endowment fund for the support of the archive and event programming. Stony Brook University Libraries hosts the AIDC 100's annual national conference titled "Truth in Technologies." Membership in the AIDC 100 is by invitation-only; its primary goal is to facilitate the business community's knowledge and understanding of AIDC technologies.
In 2006, Special Collections digitized and published the electronic versions of the national and international editions of SCAN Newsletter, founded in 1977 by George and Teddy Goldberg. Detailed finding aids and an AIDC resource page can be accessed from a Web site that provides researchers with comprehensive information about the collections comprising the AIDC 100 Archives at Stony Brook University.
Collection Profile and Overview: Kristen J. Nyitray
Illustrations: Keith Krejci