The Vatican Library chose a system developed by the U.S. National and Space Administration (NASA), to digitize eight thousand ancient manuscripts in its custody.
According to Luciano Ammenti on the Vatican Radio said, Coordinator of Computer Services of the library, it is the FITS (Flexible Images Transport System), used by the organism since the 60s to file the information on space missions.
He said that the Vatican Library made a long study on the possibility of maintaining a variety of systems and decided that it could be the right format to convert the manuscripts into digital images.
"This is the only format that has been in use for over 45 years in the computer world and is the only one that gives us the assurance of longevity, in addition to being fully free and fully modifiable," he explained.
He stressed that it is a 64 bit format, meaning that the generated files have no size limits.
"Those, with their spontaneous organization, have maintained it for over 45 years. The only experience in the world of an operating system or software as a product of longevity is the Unix operating system," he said.
"It is the father of Linux, the software that runs on all phones in the world, that has also been around for 40 years, is also generated by the scientific community and is updated for free by the scientific community," he praised.