Museums+Heritage: V&A launches ‘world’s largest and most accessible’ cultural heritage preservation database. “Launched as part of the V&A’s ongoing Culture in Crisis programme, the Museum’s new free-to-access Culture in Crisis Portal is claimed to be the world’s largest and most accessible database of cultural heritage preservation projects.” The V&A in this case is the Victoria & Albert Museum.
Japan Times: Art gets a second life via digitized showcasing. “NTT East Corp. has launched a project to preserve Japan’s cultural properties in an effort to conserve assets susceptible to damage from natural disasters or deterioration over time. Under the project, the telecommunication firm plans to digitalize cultural properties, such as paintings, architecture and historical documents, and store the data on the firm’s server.”
Academia: Tweeting in Zapotec: Social Media as a Tool for Language Activists. “Social media is used by speakers of languages big and small. For languages with a small number of speakers, social media may offer opportunities not easily available elsewhere, such as low-cost publishing and distribution of text. Furthermore, smaller languages are often devalued by surrounding communitiesÑin these situations, the use of language in global media, such as Twitter, can have additional layers of impact and can be a form of language activism in itself.”
NC State University: Cape Lookout Research Could Help National Park Managers. “To help with long-term preservation decisions, researchers with North Carolina State University, the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Park Service collaborated on a decision support model for Cape Lookout. The Optimal Preservation Model (OptiPres) factors in the vulnerability and significance of historic and cultural resources, while allowing managers to adjust their plans based on varying funding levels, says Erin Seekamp, associate professor and tourism extension specialist with NC State’s Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management.”
CBR: University of Bradford Uses HPC System to Build 3D Models of Lost Heritage Sites. “Archaeology researchers at the University of Bradford are using a combination of crowd sourcing and its first high performance computing (HPC) system to create 3D models of historical landmarks which have been severely damaged or completely destroyed.”
Mashable: Restoration YouTube will bring you deep into an internet rabbit hole. “The restoration community is a corner of YouTube boasting thousands of subscribers and millions of views. For the most part, it breaks down into four major subdivisions: shoes, swords and knives, small machinery, and toy restoration. Surprisingly, though, while all of these items are different, most of the content creators all had similar things to say.” The art restoration is pretty terrific too. Check out Baumgartner Restoration’s YouTube channel.
NewsCentral24x7: How a Script-Agnostic Media Can Empower The Illiterate. “In such an English-dominating virtual world, where technology, too, is largely developed and designed by native English-speaking persons, how do the oral or illiterate communities become a part? There is no denying that with the help of basic digital tools, people can be empowered to tell their own stories, beating long-set information exchange criterion of being able to read and write one or more script. By using the medium of spoken words and audio-visual story-telling, masses are better placed in the current information economy.”
Techworld: Meet the charity scanning and archiving thousands of historic watercolours. “A charity is undertaking efforts to build a historical database of watercolour paintings, saving their fate from being hidden away within the corridors of private homes or the archives of public institutions. In the pre-photography era, governments would train soldiers on military expeditions in watercolour painting to document the war efforts. In fact, this practice continues today. But before war photography was even possible, sketching battlefields or other operations was one of the few ways to record history in real-time.” I mentioned this initiative in 2017 and now it’s available.
Recording Academy: Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation Names Research And Preservation Grant Winners. “The Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation has announced the recipients of their Research And Preservation Grant Program, established to continue the cultural understanding of Latin Music and its history.”
Ecns: Drones increasingly used to protect Great Wall. “The use of drones helps human inspectors gain a precise understanding of the preservation of the Great Wall at delicate levels and reveals more information on areas difficult for people to access. Yanqing has the most extensive Great Wall elements in the capital city as well as a complete preservation system. Authorities said drones, satellite images and other new technologies will provide the most comprehensive, accurate data on the Great Wall to create a digital archive platform.”
Library of Congress: Born to Be 3D: Born-Digital Data Stewardship. “On November 2, the Library hosted a forum on born-digital, three-dimensional data stewardship. Born-digital 3D materials constitute important cultural documentation, facilitate scientific research, and such assets are entering cultural heritage collections. Yet, preservation approaches and stewardship requirements are not yet mainstream or standardized for born-digital 3D materials.”
Phys .org: Novel digitization methods and restoration technologies for preserving cultural heritage. “How can we protect and preserve cultural heritage? Researchers from 16 Fraunhofer Institutes are collaborating on the executive board’s cultural heritage project to develop the technologies needed for this undertaking. Whether it is visible in historical temples, ancient statues, or paintings by the great masters, cultural heritage must be preserved. But maintaining historical art treasures is not solely the responsibility of restorers – this task calls for research and the high-tech solutions it can provide. A glance inside some of the Fraunhofer labs reveals numerous researchers working on just these kinds of solutions.”
Educause Review: Managing the Cultural Record in the Information Warfare Era. “Several rapidly emerging lines of technology development and exploitation are converging, and they are going to change the world in the next decade. They will have massive social and political impact; indeed, we are already far down that path, as I’ll discuss shortly. These trajectories will create new complexities for a wide range of scholarly investigations. They will challenge us to rethink the way we define and teach information literacy. They will demand that memory institutions such as libraries and archives reconsider the documentation and contextualization of the cultural record, and they may even drive the creation of new public infrastructure supported by memory institutions and responsible content creators and distributors.”
Getty Iris: Conservation and Technical Reports for Modern Buildings Now Freely Available Online. “Established in 2014, Keeping it Modern is an initiative of the Getty Foundation that supports the conservation of twentieth-century architecture around the world. Experimentation with materials and construction techniques during this era resulted in great architectural innovation, but they were often untested and have presented complex conservation challenges with age…. Now the Getty Foundation has launched the Keeping It Modern Report Library with the first 20 completed reports, free to download and use by practitioners in the field or anyone interested in cultural heritage preservation.”
New York Times: These Cultural Treasures Are Made of Plastic. Now They’re Falling Apart.. “Of an estimated 8,300 million metric tons of plastic produced to date, roughly 60 percent is floating in the oceans or stuffed in landfills. Most of us want that plastic to disappear. But in museums, where objects are meant to last forever, plastics are failing the test of time.”