In December, the Arizona Archaeological Council (AAC) Board of Directors and two archaeologists who are members of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) praised Digital Antiquity and its central project, the Digital Archaeological Record (tDAR), noting their importance to the future of archaeology.

After a December meeting, during which Digital Antiquity representatives Keith Kintigh and Francis P. McManamon highlighted tDAR’s user-friendly interface and some of its features, the AAC Board of Directors recommended that “members become familiar with tDAR and Digital Antiquity and make use of the repository to share and preserve the digital results of their archaeological projects.” This recommendation, coupled with a planned workshop on tDAR for the AAC’s broader membership, expresses an important endorsement of the efficient management of digital archaeological data.

Responding to the first issue of the Digital Antiquity eNews, Linda Cordell, distinguished Southwest archaeologist and member of the National Academy of Sciences, called tDAR “…the most important contribution made to archaeology since radiocarbon dating.” Patty Jo Watson, 2010 recipient of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) Lifetime Achievement Award and member of the National Academy of Sciences, shared her thoughts, noting that “the potential of tDAR is truly dazzling!”

These endorsements, by a professional organization and giants in the field of archaeology, speak to the importance of providing better access to digital data and ensuring its long-term preservation.