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on Friday divulged a plan to store all the films and video footage of its 50 years in television broadcasting in an archive that can be accessed by personal computers via fiber-optic wires.

The public broadcaster said it will index 1.56 million films and videotapes that it has aired since its foundation five decades ago.

“It will be one of the largest digitalized television program libraries,” an NHK official said.

Construction of an 11,000 sq.-meter, eight-story archive building will commence in January in Kawaguchi, Saitama Prefecture. It is expected to be completed in February 2003.

Archive users will be able to access and retrieve programs — categorized into news, documentaries and drama — on PCs installed at NHK’s Tokyo broadcasting center.

“In the future, we want to make sure that outside users can access the planned database,” the official said.

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