The government of India has launched an new digital library for school books. “Now, under Digital India initiative, the Government has launched a platform that extends may help Indian school students tremendously. Aptly called eBasta (Basta means school bag in Hindi), this new platform was unveiled today by the Government that will provide digital and eBook versions of school books and other study material to school students through-out India…. The school or teachers can log on to the portal and search for eBooks and other digital content. They can then logically organize it by creating eBasta for their own students. It’s exactly like you create a bag full of schools books that are related to each standard or course.”
Chattanooga, Tennessee now has an online archive of historical film footage. “More than 400 reels of film depicting snippets of life in Chattanooga during the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s were donated to the Chattanooga History Center in 2009. Many of those films are finally available for viewing as a part of the center’s online digital archive. The collection originated from the Continental Film Co. of Chattanooga and primarily features industrial film, advertisements, tourism ads and documentary films from a variety of companies.”
The state of Pennsylvania is developing a new database of chemicals used by fracking companies. “Pennsylvania will require shale gas companies to disclose electronically the chemicals they use in hydraulic fracturing in a new state-run database by next summer.”
Indiana Modernist residence Miller House and Garden Now has an online archive. “The robust digital collection contains 17,699 downloadable images, including architectural drawings, material samples, photographs and administrative documents related to the history of the property. The archive spans more than 50 years, from the initial planning and construction of the house to later renovations and interior design projects.”
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Releases Database of Consumer Complaints Against Financial Organizations
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has released an online database of consumer complaints against banks and financial institutions. “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Thursday went live with an updated online database that includes more than 7,700 narratives from homeowners, loan recipients and others who provided first-hand narratives detailing their frustrations.” I took a quick look at the narratives and most of the ones I looked at were against really aggressive debt collection companies. You can get an RSS feed of the narratives database as it’s updated. Also available is a spreadsheet view of the consumer complaint data – company, zip code, issue and sub-issue, date complaint received, etc.
Under development: a digital archive for brass bands in Ireland. “A Queen’s academic is appealing for Ulster families to search their attics and family photo collections to share prized photos of their ancestors performing in brass bands. Professor Michael Alcorn, head of the School of Creative Arts at Queen’s, is hoping to retrieve artefacts, instruments, uniforms or anything connected with brass bands in Ireland between 1850 and 1970.”
Companies House, which is a UK government agency dealing with the licensing of companies, has launched a new Web site in beta along with an API. “It said the service has made 170 million company records available free of charge, including information on financial accounts, directors and secretaries, and that users will be able to find real time updates. Although all of the information was previously in the public domain, Companies House levied a charge for access.”
32 years of the LGBT publication Dallas Voice are now available online. “University of North Texas digitized and put online 32 years of Dallas Voice from Volume 1, Issue 1 as part of its North Texas LGBT history archives. UNT also has been working on the project in conjunction with The Dallas Way and Resource Center, which donated its Phil Johnson Archives. Thousands of pages of Dallas Voice articles and ads are searchable.” Also, the archive is a lot, lot more readable than the screen shots in the blog post make it out to be.
NASA images have been aggregated into one big collection. “The NASA Images collection, built and unveiled last week by Luna Imaging, combines over 70 NASA Image galleries into a single, searchable source. These includes familiar collections such as NASA’s Image of the Day Gallery and the Jet Propulsion Image Gallery, but also plenty of obscure treasures. In total, the collection contains over 100 thousand photographs that range from historic documentation of the Apollo moon missions to the latest shots of distant quasars by the Hubble Space Telescope.”
A professor and a hashtag has turned into a crowdsourced list of readings on the Charleston shootings. “The professor [Chad Williams] reached out to the historians Kidada E. Williams (no relation), a professor at Wayne State University; Keisha N. Blaine, an incoming professor at the University of Iowa; and Christopher Cameron, an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte who is the founder of the African American Intellectual History Society. The four scholars solicited suggestions on Twitter under the hashtag #CharlestonSyllabus, and the project quickly took off.” Note that the list at http://aaihs.org/resources/charlestonsyllabus/ is no longer accepting suggestions, but contributors are asked to continue to use the #CharlestonSyllabus hashtag; a TheCharlestonSyllabus.com Web site is under development.
Akron, Ohio has a new online photo archive. And unlike many photo archives I cover, this one is recent. “An online treasure trove of photographs of Akron is now available — for free use by anyone — thanks to local photographer Shane Wynn and two nonprofits who work to give the city a boost. Wynn spent more than 40 hours last year taking the shots, capturing more than 1,400 images of the city, including wide-angle photos taken from the tops of parking decks and a ladder.”
Scottish explorer David Livingstone now has an online archive. “The site, Livingstone Online, http://www.livingstoneonline.org, is the digital home for the documents chronicling the life and work of Livingstone, a missionary, physician and abolitionist best known for his travels in Africa in the mid-19th century…. More than 7,500 original images of Livingstone’s writings can be found on the site and the archive is expected to expand to more than 12,000 images by 2016. The archive also includes drawings and illustrations depicting Livingstone’s work and findings.”
Quartz has launched a new home for the charts which appear on its site. “Atlas gives each of our charts its own home, along with a set of tools for interacting with them: You can now download the data behind our charts, embed our charts elsewhere on the web, grab an image of our charts, and of course share our charts on social media. They will look great regardless of whether you’re using a big screen or mobile device.”
Under development: a digital archive of British Comic Fanzines. “For several months now, British comics fan David Hathaway-Price had been gathering and scanning every British comics fanzine that he’s been able to buy or had loaned to him. His aim is to create a Fanzine archive / repository, celebrating all of the brilliant work that was produced in the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s in British comic zines such as BEM, Comic Media News and many other fondly-remembered titles.”