Sam Gustman – Preserving the Stories of Our Past for the Future
In his work for the USC Shoah Foundation, Sam Gustman has pioneered data preservation techniques that will allow the testimonies of 55,000 genocide survivors to exist and be accessible for future generations. The Foundation was created in 1994 by Steven Spielberg, who, after the release of Schindler's List, recognized the importance of the first-person narrative and began documenting survivor testimonies. Today, under Gustman's guidance, the Foundation continues to research new methods of collecting, preserving, and presenting survivor testimonies and holds 11 patents on the digital collection management technologies it has developed. In his work, Gustman explores the fragility of digital media and questions what the supertext of the future will look like in a world of shifting technologies.