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Most time capsules are lost, stolen, destroyed or forgotten before they can be opened. The International Time Capsule Society was founded at Oglethorpe University, home of the Crypt of Civilization, the first modern time capsule built in 1937. As progressive as the Crypt of Civilization was for its time new technologies applicable to time capsules and their preservation continue to evolve. Our technology focus areas are:



Monitoring and tracing tech

A well constructed time capsule is associated with information on the capsules location, its precise location, any markers and opening instructions. ITCS uses the former data point to map all time capsules, sharing the map online and keeps the latter two points confidential. Geo-caching technology provides a useful benchmark for time capsule technology.



Traceability and content features

The Use of Blockchain on time capsules is a rapidly evolving technology.  Relying on its discoverable, trackable and irreversible characteristics the blockchain is a formidable tool for time capsules. Time Capsule "Smart contracts" are used on the Ethereum Blockchain  with the objective of creating a discoverable, trackable record of its existence for future generations. There are further areas of opportunity in the distributed content nature of the blockchain as well as in using blockchains for identity.


Computer Sketch

Understanding the contents, at scale

To encourage study of the application of time capsules, documents as well as  human stories in the form of large volumes of video content in Time Capsules can be made searchable using AI. Use cognitive capabilities add automated video transcription and metadata creation to analyze video with the intent to generate AI-enabled insights about society and people within a set time and place, providing a framework to not only record and research history from a personal perspective, but to also see how these events made people feel.



Bringing family history to life

The relationship between genealogy and time capsules and bringing family history to life through digital time capsules is an area of development for the society.



Bringing standardization to preservation

''Archival records''' are defined as a cultural monument in US legislation. Care and protection of archival records is defined in the declaration of archives and in the code of archival ethics.

ITCS works on standards for the industry Time Capsule archives should adhere to

  • preservation policy standards set forth by the U.S. Library of Congress, the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, and WITNESS.

  • the recommended guidelines of the (United States) National Digital Stewardship Alliance Levels of Digital Preservation and the “Guidelines for the preservation of digital heritage” from UNESCO.

  •  the goals outlined within the Open Archival Information Systems  Reference Model (ISO 14721:2003).

  • Records should be maintained in a ISO/IEC 27001|ISO-27001 certified data repository system

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