My point of departure is that the imminence of loss and the potential impossibility of restoration and retrieval have become the ‘default’, and not the exception, in the digital storage ecosystem. To learn how to deal with this permanent state of absence can be crucial for a new understanding of the basis of historical preservation. After all, as Henri-Pierre Jeudy wrote in one of his essays about historical conservation, “a contemporary aesthetics of abandonment would consider the ‘ruins of modernity’ to be something other than a disaster” (Jeudy 2005: 70).