There's been an update out in the blogosphere,
In contrast with the uninspiring hype about the Einstein-Gutkind letter auction, something cool may be coming, from an organization that hasn't been a
player so far.
The Albert Einstein Archives, at the Hebrew University in Jeursalem, which has a partnership with Caltech's Einstein Papers Project, will try to
restore digitally the original 1954 "look" of the letter. The archives owns a photocopy (actually a copy of one) presumably from a copy made by
Gutkind before he sold the letter in 1955. It's black and white and limited by the technology of its time.
Recently however, high definition color photos were made for the sale, and anybody can have them.
They show texture, and a very clear view of the current state of Einstein's script.The bad news is that it looks like it was stored negligently for a
long time, and much of the paper has turned brown.
As modest as it is, the older picture may provide the information needed to correct the browning accurately, and perhaps refresh the ink impression.
If so, then we would have a new standard image which complemented the paper original. With the latter, some privileged few could hold history in
their hands, with the reconstruction, everybody could experience history come back to life.
Richard Dawkins has also recently added to his reporting on the auction with photos of the letter (the quality is better than the 2008 auction
pictures, but not as high-def as the 2012 auction photos), the envelope it came in (don't laugh, things like that are important for document
fanciers), and some poses of workers at the storage library handling the letter. Carefully.
Richard still features part of the seller's ad and its text (hmm, I wonder if his cooperation with publicity helped him get access to the otherwise
unidentified facility to take his photos), and nothing that I found about the glaring translation problems that have been discussed elsewhere, both
recently and years ago.
edit on 21-9-2012 by eight bits because: (no reason given)