Published By: Steve Payne

How many of you have old 8mm or VHS family movies, or maybe some other older format movie tapes?  A lot of you, if your family is anything like ours.  Do you remember shooting videos of family events and later gathering around the movie projector or VCR/TV to watch and enjoy?  

How long has it been since you watched those old movies?  Do you even still have a working 8mm projector or VCR?  As technology has changed, those old machines have been replaced by DVD players, MP4 players, computers, tablets and smart phones.  

Today’s family videos are digital and stored on hard drives, memory cards, DVD’s, and in the cloud.  The last company to manufacture VCR’s, Funai Electric Company, ceased making them in 2016 due to declining sales and difficulty obtaining parts.  Even the long-term future of DVD’s and DVD players is uncertain.

And how long will those old movies last before degrading?  Some estimate VHS tapes will last only 10-20 years before degrading, and, depending on storage conditions, maybe less.  DVD’s should last much longer, but in fact, any physical storage medium can degrade or become damaged or destroyed over time.  Fortunately, there are companies and software programs to convert old tapes to digital formats and storage.

As the holiday season is upon us, we are reminded once again of how important family memories are.  I would love to get out our old movies and see them again; watch important and funny family gatherings and events; see our kids as they first arrived and as they grew and participated in sports and school activities; see our parents and other relatives when we were all much younger.  What memories they would bring back!  I hope my 8mm projector and VCR work and the tapes haven’t been damaged.  Maybe I should get smart and convert them all to digital files before it’s too late!

Some of the most important and popular features of LifeShare are the abilities to send messages, pictures and videos to loved ones, and through them to connect with each other and enrich the lives of seniors and their families alike in very special and meaningful ways.  This is especially true during the holidays.  LifeShare gives us one easy way to stay in touch, share our feelings, life events and memories even if we live at a great distance.

And with LifeShare, our loved ones don’t have to worry about equipment and tapes, and whether and how they work.   At LifeShare, “we believe the most successful technology is the simplest to use technology.”