Just this past week I was discussing with a senior collector about the struggles in the hobby right now with knowledge. We are creating so many items that its hard to keep up with what’s newly issued and as a result the older, seldom seen items get missed or forgotten. Ultimately the solution is better education and education tools.
Against that is technology is giving us better tools to record and share information than ever before. This thought comes to mind as I was responding to a share of an eBay auction for an old Camp Tom Wooten felt camp patch.
The title says it was from the 1930s. To me it didn’t quite have that “feel” as I have patches with this design in my collection that are dated in the 1940s. Well, a person quickly was able share a web-site link that showed the historical Camp Tom Wooten patches. Very neat! Very useful. There are a lot of these out there but what we need to do is figure out how to integrate them all.
In the OA Blue Book web-site, collectors can now record the history of patches in the comment fields for any issue. We could never do that before and it only works with an on-line database. (and there has to be in the design for folks to comment back either to add to the information or correct a mis-statement). We need to do more of this.
A few years back I created the ScoutPatchWiki. Folks from around the world were putting reference information in. But, it got massively hacked by foreign spammers and had to take it down. I still have the data and it looks like the software has increased its security so maybe that will be part of the new year’s resolutions is to resurrect this site.