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Digitization definition

Digitization is the process of converting analog information into a digital format. Digitization enables the data to be read, stored, and shared by computer systems. The process makes data more accessible and easier to share, store, and edit.

See also: digital data, analog computer

Digitization examples

  • Scanning a paper photograph into a digital image.
  • Converting analog sound into audio files.
  • Turning handwritten texts into digital documents.

History of digitization

Digitization came naturally together with the rise of computers in the middle of the 20th century. It became more widespread in the late early 21st century because of the increased computing power, affordability of digital storage, and the widespread adoption of the internet.

Advantages and disadvantages of digitization

The advantages of digitization are significant:

  • Preserving data quality over time, unlike physical formats that degrade.
  • Allowing for easy storage, access, and sharing of information.
  • Making data analysis and editing much easier.

However, digitization also has some drawbacks:

  • In order to access and interpret the data, people need to have access to special devices. This potentially excludes those who can’t afford such technology.
  • Digitized data is also susceptible to cyber threats and requires special measures to ensure it’s safe.
  • The process of digitization can be resource-intensive, especially for large amounts of data or high-resolution media.