Here are a few examples of preservation of photos of relatives: these photos are in their original frames, on the wall or (currently on dresser waiting to be put back up after we painted the wall. These photos show several generations of my family from my great-grandmother to my youngest grand-daughter.
Professional or amateur, photographs perform a valuable service by preserving pictures of personalities and princesses, politicians and plutocrats. Photos—published by periodicals and newspapers, and in alumni yearbooks–the perfect way to remember classmates and professors.
Places and Panoramas preserved for posterity, on photographic film and/or paper by both professional photographers and people with cameras ranging from little point-and-shoots …and by Pros with elaborate camera systems…producing permanent portraits of places and people which will last indefinitely in publications, on electronic platforms, on walls, and in properly stored shoe-boxes.
Preconceived ideas aside, perhaps the preferential aspects of comparison of preservation possibilities would be a combination of the two systems: paper and virtual. Online computerized storage is efficient and far less space-saving than accumulations of various paper forms. However–they are also more vulnerable to a number of unspeakable catastrophes to the power grid. Yes, I know, paper can burn and become ruined by floods…there is never a perfect system.
I am a great advocate of paper…printed out documents and manuscripts (especially manuscripts) properly stored in file folders in fire-proof cabinets. Given a choice of an ordinary paper dictionary…or a hundred electronic forms of the dictionary…the paper will win my heart any time.