Need a story illustrating the importance of good naming standards for your photo archives? Here ya go. “You may have noticed that Newshub’s redesigned website launched in December. As part of this, we took the necessary step of moving our entire photo archive across to a new database. Unfortunately, more than 5000 of these images shared file names with another one (for instance, we had around 20 photos named ‘police.jpg’).”
If there’s never another issue of ResearchBuzz, you can blame this new dynamic Web archiving tool which was just released by Rhizome. “Rhizome is pleased to announce the first full release of Webrecorder, the free online tool that allows users to create their own high-fidelity archives of the dynamic web.” Oh boy, does this look like fun. Watch the YouTube video at the link for all the skinny.
In development: a digital archive of historical Arabic manuscripts. “St. Catherine’s Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage site that’s located on rugged terrain at the foot of Mount Sinai in Egypt, houses the oldest continually operating library in the world, containing ancient and medieval manuscripts second only to those held by the Vatican Library. These remarkable manuscripts, which delve into subjects ranging from history and philosophy to medicine and spirituality, were never easily accessed by scholars and students… That will all be changing, thanks to a major grant from the Ahmanson Foundation to the UCLA Library. The grant will fund key aspects of the Sinai Library Digitization Project to create digital copies of some 1,100 rare and unique Syriac and Arabic manuscripts dating from the fourth to the 17th centuries.”
Now available: a digital archive of… stuff. “Today every tweet is archived, every Facebook selfie stashed and cached, every arts/tech/culture blog mirrored, and the idea of the permanence of data is taken for granted. But things like physical objects aren’t permanent. They break down, melt, or are tossed in the trash, and could potentially disappear from public consciousness forever, leaving behind but a foggy memory. Thngs, a digital database for the preservation of physical objects, wants to change that. Billing itself as ‘A place for everything,’ this new system allows users to interact with objects old and new, whether they be a bust of Emperor Vitellius from the 1800s, or the Spice Girls-branded Polaroid Spice Cam from 1997.”
Now available: an online archive about India’s culture. “Sahapedia aims to educate the people of India about the traditions, visual arts, performing arts, literature and languages that is scattered across the country. The portal is accessible to all and is a strong initiative towards the digitisation and research on the traditional art forms of India and their importance in the modern era.”
A new open source, collaborative platform has been proposed for aggregating institutional archives. “With the technical and financial capacity of any currently existing single institution failing to answer the needs for a platform efficiently archiving the web, a team of American researchers have come up with an innovative solution, submitted to the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and published in the open-access journal Research Ideas and Outcomes (RIO). They propose a lightweight, open-source collaborative collection development platform, called Cobweb, to support the creation of comprehensive web archives by coordinating the independent activities of the web archiving community. “
It’s two years old, but this paper from Ian Milligan addresses issues that are coming more and more into prominence. Check out Mining the ‘Internet Graveyard’: Rethinking the Historians’ Toolkit. “‘Mining the Internet Graveyard’ argues that the advent of massive quantity of born-digital historical sources necessitates a rethinking of the historians’ toolkit. The contours of a third wave of computational history are outlined, a trend marked by ever-increasing amounts of digitized information (especially web based), falling digital storage costs, a move to the cloud, and a corresponding increase in computational power to process these sources. Following this, the article uses a case study of an early born-digital archive at Library and Archives Canada – Canada’s Digital Collections project (CDC) – to bring some of these problems into view.”
Two companies are teaming up to put a digital archive on the moon. And they want your contributions. “Astrobotic Technology Inc. and Lunar Missions Ltd, the company behind the global, inclusive, not-for-profit crowd-funded Lunar Mission One, have signed a deal to send the first digital storage payload to the Moon. The payload will support Lunar Mission One’s ‘Footsteps on the Moon’ campaign, launched earlier today, which invites millions of people to include their footsteps – in addition to images, video and music – in a digital archive of human life that will be placed on the moon during Astrobotic’s first lunar mission.”
ePADD is expanding with a grant. “The ePADD open-source email archiving and processing platform developed by Stanford University Libraries was awarded a $685,000 National Leadership Grant by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) on August 31.” This article has an extensive overview of what ePADD is and what it does, if you’re curious.