Monday, October 20, 2014

Version 2.0 of the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF)

This announcement came to me in mid-September.  My apologies in not posting it sooner.  The event mentioned below is being held today (Oct. 20).

The International Image Interoperability Framework community ( is pleased to announce the release of the second major version of its specifications intended to provide a shared layer for dynamic interactions with images and the structure of the collections and objects of which they are part. These APIs are used in production systems to enable cross-institutional integration of content, via mix and match of best of class front end applications and servers.

This release adds additional functionality derived from real world use cases needed by partners within the community, and reflects more than a year of experience with the previous versions and significant input from across the cultural heritage community. It also formalizes many of the aspects that were implicit in the initial versions and makes puts into place a manageable framework for sustainable future development.
Detailed change notes are available.

The specifications are available at:
Accompanying the release of the specifications is a suite of community infrastructure tools, including reference implementations of all versions of the Image API, collections of valid and intentionally invalid example Presentation API resource descriptions, plus validators for both APIs. Production ready software is available for the full Image API stack, with server implementations in both Loris [1] and IIP Server [2], and rich client support in the popular Open Seadragon [3].

There will be a rollout and dissemination event on October 20th, 2014 at the British Library to celebrate this release and engage with the wider community. Further details at, all are welcome but (free) registration is required.

Feedback, comments and questions are welcomed on the discussion list at

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Wayback Wednesday: Tips to help you as you attend conferences (including a new handout)

Among my blog posts are posts that contains tips and other information related to attending conferences.  Those posts include:
Last week, I spoke at a session for the SU iSchool MSLIS students, who are interested in attending conferences. The New York Library Association Annual Conference is coming up soon (November) and so this was a good time to talk about conferences in general and NYLA specifically. For the session, I developed the handout below, which incorporates advice from several different people. I know that there is much more that could have been said, but I didn't want to totally overwhelm them.  If you find this handout useful, please use it!

Thursday, October 02, 2014

The stratosphere in the library profession & a call for a change

Galaxies 'Coming of Age' in Cosmic Blobs (NASA, Chandra, 6/24/09)Since May of this year, there has been a conversation about how members of our profession conduct themselves at conferences.  The conversation has swirled, coalesced, and then swirled again...and its not yet done.  Rather than point you towards the conversation, which might give a splintered point of view, I want to put forth a call for a change in how the stratosphere - those held in super high regard - in our profession is created and what their obligations are.

First, who is in the library profession's stratosphere?  This is an ill defined group and likely we won't agree on who is in it.  However, to me, it includes:
  • Movers and Shakers
  • Emerging Leaders
  • Those that regularly give keynotes at large library conference
  • Those in library and library association leadership positions
  • Those to whom much has been given (e.g., phenomenal institution or community support)
  • Anyone else who has been put on a pedestal

Yes, it is a big group. Potentially some don't stay in the stratosphere forever.

Second, while this is what I deem the stratosphere to be in our profession, how should the stratosphere really be created? It needs to be less about a small group moving others into the stratosphere...and less about people self-nominating themselves...and more building consensus about who really is doing phenomenal work.  I know...this is not and would not be easy, but it should allow us to acknowledge the real movers and shakers in our industry.

Finally, no matter how it is created, I think those in the stratosphere need to live up to a higher calling.  As the saying goes:
To those whom much is given, much is expected. - John F. Kennedy
 If you are in the stratosphere, here are my expectations of you:
  • You didn't rise into the stratosphere on your own.  You had help.  Now turn around and help someone else in the profession.  That help could be in providing introductions, in including that person in conversations, in helping that person get a job or a conference gig, or something else.
  • When you look to "lift others up" into the stratosphere, don't just help those that look like you, who went to the same university as you, or who work with you.   We are a diverse profession, yet the stratosphere isn't as diverse as it should be.  Help to change that.
  • Listen more than you talk.  Yes, we want to hear what you have to say, but we also want you to hear what we have to say.  As a member of the stratosphere, you are in a position to create change, and we have information and opinions that you need to hear...that we want you to hear.
  • Abide by the codes of conduct that are being adopted by associations and conferences.  Even if the association you're in or the conference you're attending doesn't have a code of conduct, abide by those codes that others are adopting.  The codes are there to protect everyone, including you.  And if for no other reason, do this because it will help you to continue to set a good example.
  • Recognize that you represent all of us, not only to members of our profession, but also to those unfamiliar with our profession.  If people begin to talk about your actions more than about what you say, you are hurting the profession.
  • If you hear yourself saying that you don't care what other people think about you - and you say it a lot - stop and listen. You're ignoring feedback that you need to hear and likely act on.  
I'll stop there, although I'm sure there is more that I could say.  I do know that more will be said by others, because this is a topic that is not going away soon.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Blog post: For God’s Sake, Stop Digitizing Paper

In his blog post, Joshua Ranger argues that we should stop digitizing materials that are already in a stable format and turn out attention to those materials that are in an unstable format, like audio and video.  Ranger makes several interesting arguments, which are finding an audience that believe these arguments are worth making.  I suggest that you read his entire piece, then discuss this with your colleagues. Do you find merit in his arguments?  Are his priorities the ones that you are following?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

State of Delaware: Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and Digital Accounts Act

Likely you have already heard about this, but in case you haven't. Here is the synopsis as written into the Delaware State House Bill No. 345, which amends that State's Title 12:
Recognizing that an increasing percentage of people's lives are being conducted online and that this has posed challenges after a person dies or becomes incapacitated, this Act specifically authorizes fiduciaries to access and control the digital assets and digital accounts of an incapacitated person, principal under a personal power of attorney, decedents or settlors, and beneficiaries of trusts. The Act should be construed liberally to allow such access and control, especially when expressly provided for in a written instrument. Section 1 creates a new Chapter 50 in Title 12 to contain the Act itself while Sections 2 through 4 amend existing statutes pertaining to personal powers of attorney, guardianships, and trustee powers to include the authority permitted under Section 1.
 As Nate Hoffelder wrote:
Delaware is the first state to follow the latest suggestion from the Uniform Law Commission, a non-profit group that crafts model legislation and lobbies to enact it across all jurisdictions in the United States. Last month the ULC adopted a new legal standard, the Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (UFADAA), which laid out what rights heirs should have over digital content belonging to the deceased.
Hoffelder notes that other states do have laws related to how the digital assets of the decreased should be handled, but that Delaware's law is more comprehensive.

While these state laws only govern people living in those states, they do create a path that other states - and our federal government - can follow.  This also should provide impetus for people to consider their digital assets when create a power of attorney and/or will.  If people do that and take advantage of these laws, then pushing other governments down this path becomes much easier.