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Longevity

There's one other issue with raw files. Currently, many camera vendors use proprietary formats for raw files, raising a concern about their long-term readability. Hardware manufacturers don't have the best track record when it comes to producing updated software for old hardware—I have cupboards full of ancient orphaned weird junk to prove it—so it's entirely legitimate to raise the question of how someone will be able to read the raw files you capture today in 10 or 100 years time.

I don't have a crystal ball, but Adobe's commitment to making Camera Raw a universal converter for raw images is clear. At the same time, it'sno secret that some camera vendors are less than supportive of Adobe's efforts in this regard. If you're concerned about long-term support for your raw files, you need to make your camera vendor aware of the fact. You can also support any initiatives to produce an open, documented file format for raw captures, and, if necessary, use your wallet to vote against vendors who resist such initiatives.


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