Through looking on the various archives listed, MITH’s Vintage Computers in particular, it became very apparent that without some kind of structure or classification all properties that one would consider an “archive” cease to be effective/exist. When browsing through the content of an archive, I was able to identify a certain hierarchy and tagging system. There were subsets within subsets that classified content into easily manageable, easily accessible, pieces of information. This gets back to the idea of indexing, and how it is a vital attribute to anything considered an archive. Without an active index and tagging system, I could look at the same information and take away nothing of value. Applying this concept in other settings, it made me question what exactly makes an archive an archive. Is it the shell in which content is housed? Is it the content itself?
If you have a library with no books, and no system of organization, all you have is any empty building. If you consider the content itself to make an archive, this would mean as soon as you fill the building with books it now becomes an archive. But what if you have a collection of books sitting in the sidewalk? What is the archive now? When I think about archiving in this sense, it makes it very apparent that the system of organizational is the primary contributor to the archival properties.