Monday, June 28, 2010

Videos of the Treventus Bookscanner ScanRobot®

Treventus, which is exhibiting at the ALA conference in Washington, DC this year, has videos in YouTube of its bookscanner in operation.  If you haven't watched a video of a bookscanner in operation - or know nothing about Treventus, you might want to watch one.  (Of course, always better to see one in person.)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The pivot, careers & other random thoughts

Random Thought #1 - At the SLA Annual Conference, keynote speaker James Carville noted that waiters and waitresses in New Orleans are not trying to become actors...a reference to the fact that many waiters in New York City are actually actors who are trying to make a living before their "big break".  Instead, he noted that wait staff in New Orleans see their work as being their career.  According to Carville, it is also likely that the person's parents also had worked as wait staff, making it "like father, like son" (my words).  His point was that because this is an honorable career in New Orleans, people do it well. Indeed, the service in every eatery - no matter its size, cuisine or price - was excellent.

It occurred to me that we often don't have many children following in the same footsteps as their parents anymore.  It used to be more common.  For those working to digitize materials and create forward-thinking digital libraries (or even new technologies), are you inspiring family members to follow in your footsteps?  Do they see your work as an honorable and important career that could also be their career?

Random Thought #2 - I attended the AlwaysOn Venture Summit East conference earlier this week (which had nothing at all to do with digitization).  One of the speakers talked about "the pivot". In that world, the pivot is when an entrepreneur realizes that the product/service that he is developing isn't what is needed and so "pivots" to a new product/service.  The speaker noted that an entrepreneur may pivot - change directions - several times before hitting on the right product to develop.

In terms of digitization, organizations make decisions about what they are going to do and how they are going to do it, and obtain funding to do exactly that.  Because the funding and project are now linked together, it can be difficult to make major changes.  Imagine, though, if a project could "pivot" once it was realized that there was a better path to follow.  Imagine if that change was seen as part of the learning or development process - a positive - and supported by the institution and the funding agency.  Would we have better digital collections online?

Random Thought #3 - The BP oil spill - disaster - in the Gulf of Mexico is on everyone's mind these days.  During my last morning in New Orleans, I chatted with another guest in the hotel who happened to also be a mayor of a town in northern Louisiana.  He noted that a hurricane can dump salt water 240 miles inland (near his town), which means that a hurricane could do the same with oil.  Hurricanes take many paths through the Gulf of Mexico and then onto land.  Imagine the devastation if one or more hurricanes picks up and deposits oil on land, cities, farms, historic sites, homes, people, cars, other words, every inch for miles. Could a culture survive that?  Would the cultural heritage - both physical and digital objects - survive?  What can we do to ensure that the answer is "yes"?

Event: Spanning the Boundaries of Digital Curation Education (part of iPRES2010)

As received via email.

We would like to invite you to participate in a workshop called Spanning the Boundaries of Digital Curation Education, which will be held over two half days: the afternoon of September 22 and the morning of September 23 in Vienna, Austria.

The workshop will be held in association with the 7th International Conference on Preservation of Digital Objects (iPRES2010) in Vienna on Sept 19-24.

The number of projects and institutions providing training and education on aspects of digital curation has increased dramatically in recent years, resulting in a vast and often overwhelming number of courses for potential attendees to consider. It is clear that increased collaboration is needed in order to establish a more coordinated approach.

The primary goal of this workshop is to facilitate the sharing of information and ideas across the boundaries of professional education (national, institutional and educational level).  While the number of digital curation educational offerings across the globe has increased significantly in recent years, there are still relatively scarce human resources for developing and implementing educational content.

The workshop will explore potential areas of collaboration and will include short summary talks about current educational activities by workshop participants.  We will then engage in small group discussions devoted to planning and strategies for sharing and collaboration within given regions and discussion among all participants about implications for collective action and formulation of next steps.

This event is designed for those who are engaged in efforts to prepare professionals to care for digital collections.  This includes full-time professional educators, but also professionals who work as adjunct instructors, those who offer continuing professional education workshops, and those providing professional development opportunities to staff within their own institutions. It is intended to be a very inclusive and interactive.  In order to encourage participation from a diverse set of individuals, we are not requiring participants to submit formal papers.

If you would like to participate in the workshop, please send a message to by July 15, 2010 with "Spanning the Boundaries" as the subject line and including the following within the body of the message:
  • Your name
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Job title
  • Current and planned digital curation education efforts
  • Whether or not you would like to give a brief presentation about your current/planned efforts

This information will allow the organizers to determine how much time should be devoted to the individual talks and structure the small group discussions in a way that reflects the composition of the intended participants, based on nationality and institutional affiliation.

We encourage you to consider this exciting opportunity and to alert your colleagues who have related interests.  We hope to see you in Vienna!

Sent on behalf of the Spanning the Boundaries workshop team:
  • George Coulbourne, Executive Program Officer, Office of Strategic Initiatives, Library Of Congress
  • Costis Dallas, Associate Professor & Interim Director of Museum Studies, Faculty of Information, University of Toronto; Assistant Professor, Communication, Media and Culture Department, Panteion University; and Research Fellow, Digital Curation Unit - IMIS, Athena Research Centre
  • Joy Davidson, Associate Director, Digital Curation Centre (UK)
  • Wendy Duff, Associate Professor, Faculty of Information, University of Toronto; Director, Digital Curation Institute
  • William Kilbride, Executive Director, Digital Preservation Coalition (UK)
  • Christopher (Cal) Lee, Assistant Professor, School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina
  • Nancy McGovern, Digital Preservation Officer, Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research, University of Michigan
  • Simon Tanner, Director,  King's Digital Consultancy Services, King's College London, Centre for Computing in the Humanities
  • Manfred Thaller, Professor of Humanities Computer Science, University at Cologne, Germany
  • Helen R. Tibbo, Professor, School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Event: 6th International Digital Curation Conference

As received via email.

6th International Digital Curation Conference
Participation & Practice: Growing the curation community through the  data decade
6 - 8 December 2010, Chicago, USA

The call for papers for IDCC10 is open until 23 July 2010.

Submission information can be found at:-

Presenting at the conference offers you the chance to be part of the growing curation community
  • To share good practice, skills and knowledge transfer
  • To influence and inform future digital curation policy & practice
  • To test out curation resources and toolkits
  • To explore collaborative possibilities and partnerships
  • To engage with curation educators and trainers
The draft programme is now available at:-

Key speakers to include:
  • Kevin Ashley, Director of the Digital Curation Centre
  • Christine Borgman, Presidential Chair & Professor of Information Studies, University of California Los Angeles
  • Sheila Corrall, Professor of Librarianship & Information Management, University of Sheffield
  • Stephen Friend, President and CEO Sage Bionetworks
  • Chris Lintott, Principal Investigator, Galaxy Zoo, University of Oxford
  • Clifford Lynch,  Executive Director of the Coalition for Networked Information
  • MacKenzie Smith, Associate Director for Technology, MIT Libraries.
  • Barend Mons, WikiProteins, Erasmus Medical Centre, Rotterdam
  • John Unsworth, Dean and Professor Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
  • Antony Williams, Vice President of Strategic Development, ChemSpider at the Royal Society of Chemistry
Registration will open on 1 September 2010.

Sent on behalf of IDCC10 Programme Committee:

Co-chaired by Kevin Ashley, Director of the Digital Curation Centre (DCC), Liz Lyon, Associate Director of the DCC, Allen Renear and Melissa Cragin from the Graduate School of Library and Information Science (GSLIS) at the University of Illinois, Clifford Lynch, Executive Director of the Coalition for Networked Information.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Event: Staying on TRAC: Digital Preservation Implications & Solutions for Collaboratives

Received in email...I do not know if space is still available.

Staying on TRAC: Digital Preservation Implications & Solutions for Collaboratives 
San Jose, CA

When it comes to developing a long-term digital preservation program, knowledge is power. That is why BCR and LYRASIS have partnered to bring you the Staying on TRAC: Digital Preservation Implications & Solutions for Collaboratives (formerly the Digital Preservation for Digital Collaboratives Workshop).

Using CRL/OCLC Trustworthy Repositories Audit and Certification: Criteria and Checklist (TRAC) as the  foundation, the workshop will provide you with the information and tools you need to plan, assess, and outline a digital preservation plan for sustaining collaboratively generated digital content. 
Workshop attendees will explore implemented solutions including ExLibris’ Rosetta, OCLC’s Digital Archive, Tessella’s Safety Deposit Box, Chronopolis from University of California San Diego, Educopia Institute’s MetaArchive, and DAITTS from Florida Center for Library Automation.

The workshop will consist of the following webinars and in-person session:

1st webinar, July 13, 1-3 pm ET:
• Introduction to the Digital Preservation Landscape
• Digital Preservation Standards
2nd webinar, July 14, 1-3 pm ET:
• Sustaining the Digital Investment: Developing a Digital Preservation Program
3rd webinar, July 16, 1-3 pm ET:
• Developing Preservation Policies for Collaboratives

In-Person Sessions, August 3-4:
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, San Jose, CA
• Day 1: Elements of TRAC and Using TRAC in Planning and Assessment
• Day 2: Technology (TRAC III: Technologies & Technical Infrastructure), including panel presentation of implemented solutions.

LYRASIS will provide post-workshop webinars and support to assist collaborative teams in completing their preservation plans.

BONUS:  Five collaboratives who complete their plans will be selected for an onsite digital preservation readiness assessment. Each assessment will be conducted by two of the faculty members.

Workshop Fee: 

The cost to attend this invaluable workshop is $150 for the first member of a registered collaborative team, and $75 for additional on-site attendees from the same collaborative team. At least one member of the collaborative team must attend all sessions (two team members are encouraged). Additionally, all members of the collaborative may participate in the webinar sessions and through the use of technology, onsite attendees will be able to communicate with all team members during sessions of the workshop.

NOTE: The fee covers the webinars and in-person session as well as all workshop materials, and post-workshop online activities. Continental breakfast and lunch will be provided at in-person session.

On-site space limited to 40 attendees! Register today!

For additional information, contact LYRASIS Digital Services, 800.999.8558

The workshop is presented by LYRASIS, Northeast Document Conservation Center and OCLC, with partial funding provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

SLA2010: Days 2-6 - Notes -- Part 3 (and video)

This is part three...

Elaine Dean The Association -The fact that the economic turmoil of the last two years had affected the Association was discussed at several sessions.  Dan Trefethen, SLA's treasurer, provided an overview of the organization's financial situation at the Closing General Session and gave enough detail to make the current situation very real.  The current Board of Directors and Association staff have been working to put SLA in better financial shape, and that work will continue.  It was stressed that this is a time of charge for the Association.  Clearly we cannot continue to do all of the same things that we do now and in the same way.  Someone said that "everything is on the table" for discussion, review, re-thinking, etc.

Addendum (6/18/2010): A few things that I forgot to mention.  First, the number of Association members now stands at ~9,700.  Yes, this is less than last year and likely due to a number of factors including the economy.

Second, historically, the Association has relied on dues, sponsorships and revenue from the Annual Conference to cover its operating expenses.  That three-prong approach no longer works, given the current economic realities.  How SLA funds its activities will need to change.

Third, no matter what dues category a member is in, each member receives $600/year of benefits from SLA.  No member pays in dues enough to cover his or her benefits from the Association.  That additional money must come from somewhere.

Finally, in the last year, the Association staff has decreased by nearly 30% due to staff reductions and attrition. If you haven't noticed a negative change in service, that is because the staff is working hard to keep everything running as members expect.

Given the state of other organizations, this news was likely not a surprise.  It did provide fuel for interesting conversations over meals and in the hallways...and all of those conversations will increase over the coming months.

By the way, Dennie Heye did a quick interview (mp3) with SLA CEO Janice LaChance where she talked about the work the Association has ahead of it. 

The Video - All of the Board of Director candidates were video recorded answering the question:
SLA celebrated its 100th anniversary last year. How does SLA help its members become essential in the new knowledge economy?
We each at 2 minutes (max) for our reply.  If you're curious, you can view mine below.

SLA Kentucky Chapter -While I am a member of the Upstate New Chapter of SLA, I have built friendships with members of the Kentucky Chapter.  Like angels, members of the Kentucky Chapter have taken many people under their wings and offered their hospitality irrespective of the conference location or time of day.   If you ever get a chance to hang out with Chapter members, take it!  You will not be disappointed.

SLA2010: Days 2-6 - Notes -- Part 2

This is part two...

Statue near Harrah'sOn Monday, I moderated the session "The Consultant's Toolkit: Tips, Techniques and Words of Wisdom" for the Consultants Section of the Leadership and Management Division.  On the panel for the session were:
In the audience were ~60 people, with ~30% already working as consultants, ~40% who were thinking about consulting as a career, and the remainder there to pick up tidbits that might help them deal with consultants.

Some lessons from the panel:
  • When beginning a consulting business, it is important to have an lawyer, banker and accountant as advisors.  If you also include an insurance agent, you then have your BAIL team (banker, accountant, insurer, and lawyer).
  • A lawyer and accountant can advise you on the best form for your business, e.g., corporation, S-corp, limited liability partnership or sole proprietorship. (more info)
  • An information consultant does not have high start-up costs.  Often you can get started after designating some space in your home, acquiring basic office furniture, and a computer.
  • While start-up costs are low, it can take months or years for a consulting practice to find a rhythm and to have steadier cash flow.  
  • Marketing is always important, even when you have many projects.
  • It is important to have enough financial resources to survive periods of low income.  You'll also need to have money to live off of at the start of your business, since it is generally unlikely to have a paying client immediately.
  • Don't invest in a lot of marketing material.  While an expensive brochure sounds great, most find it unnecessary to invest in a lot of them.
  • Setting your fee structure means understanding your costs (all of them).  You also need to know what your market will bear.  Mary Ellen Bates' book Building and Running a Successful Research Business: A Guide for the Independent Information Professional, Second Edition contains useful information that will help you with this task.
  • Understand what type of work you want to do as well as the type of work that you do not want to do.  
  • For work that is outside of your scope, hire someone else to handle it.  It could be a contractor or part-time employee.
  • Being a consultant can mean working all the time, since you're your own boss and there is always something to do.  It is important to create time away from work.
  • The number of projects/clients you can handle at one time will vary.  
  • Your consulting practice/focus will change over time and that's okay.
  • It is important to interact with other consultants and learn from them.  There seems to be a growing number of consultants in SLA.  There is also the Association of Independent Information Professionals.  Jan Sykes noted that the Consulting Section is going to work on a consultants directory for SLA.
The group told many stories to illustrate the points above as well as the other things discussed.  Consultants in the audience provided good information, too.  The questions raised by the audience were very useful.

Interestingly, after the session, I had two people tell me that they learned that they did not have the moxie to be a consultant and thanked me for helping them learn that!

SLA2010: Days 2-6 - Notes -- Part 1

I've divided this blog post into three parts. This is part one...

Typical New Orleans architecture3000+ people attended the SLA Annual Conference this year in New Orleans, LA. We survived this heat (90+F), humidity and heat advisory warnings. (Some of us even thrived in it!) At one point, the heat index was 112F.  Besides the unusual high heat for this time of year, we were also surprised - pleasantly - by the wonderful seafood.  Yes, there is an oil spill off the Gulf Coast, but there is plenty of great seafood in restaurants across the city. By the way, even places that serve "fast food" had good local cuisine and seafood! (I should also note that contrary to some opinion, New Orleans in not on the coast, but rather on the Mississippi River, so there no oil washing up here.)

By the way, it is important to note that 101 people attended a virtual version of the conference.  This was SLA's first attempt at this and it will offer a virtual conference option next year.

The Conference - The more involved you get in SLA, the longer the conference becomes. For most, the conference begins on Sunday and ends on Wednesday. The Board, however, meets on Friday and Saturday, and there are other meetings on Saturday and Sunday. Given that I attended meetings on Friday, my conference this year was six days in length and I spent much of that time learning more about the inner workings of the Association as well as listening to members ideas and concerns about SLA.

The opening keynote on Sunday was given by James Carville and Mary Matalin, husband and wife political strategists from opposite sides of the political landscape.  While they talked about the changing landscape of information and the media, they were most passionate when talking about the current situation in the Gulf of Mexico. While I appreciated hearing them, what made the biggest impact on me was hearing them talk about the culture of this region and how it is in danger.

"The net seizes our attention only to scatter it." - Nicholas Carr

The closing keynote was given by Nicholas Carr, whose latest book is The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains.  While research is still being done, evidence seems to point to the fact that our ability to concentrate and focus is being changed by the way we are now reading (or skimming) information.  Our brains, which hundreds of years ago needed to be able to shift focus quickly in order to spot danger, were re-wired through book reading to focus for long periods of time on one activity.  Now we're re-building the ability to quickly change focus from on thing to another (multi-tasking or quickly serial-tasking).  What does that mean for a student's ability to do research and learn?  How will it impact our lives and our work?  And will some people -- perhaps some professionals -- keep the ability to concentrate on one task for long periods of time rather than emphasizing focusing for micro-moments? 

Carr made me realize that I need to try to limit my online reading (skimming!) time and ensure that I spend time in activities that require intense focus and concentration.  And I probably need to shut down some of my computer tools more frequently so I don't try to multi-task.

Oh...Carr said that 20 year olds spend an average of 7 minutes per day reading the printed word.  Besides the potential impact on a person's ability to concentrate, I wonder how this impacts a person's vocabulary and use of language.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Event: CURATEcamp 2010

As received via email.

Please join us at CURATEcamp 2010, an unconference on curation micro-services, at the University of California, Berkeley, August 16-17, 2010. Thanks to the generous support of Penn State's Digital Library technologies group and the California Digital Library, food (breakfast and lunch) and lodging will be provided at no cost during the conference. Lodging will be single rooms in the UC-Berkeley dorms on the Clark Kerr Campus from August 15-17. You are responsible for your travel arrangements and off-campus lodging arrangements should you prefer the hotel experience to the dormitory experience. Space is limited, so register today:

More information at:

Call for Proposals: Open Access to Science Information: Trends, Models and Strategies for Libraries

As received via email.

“Open Access to Science Information: Trends, Models and Strategies for Libraries”
IFLA Satellite pre-conference,
Sections: Science and Technology Libraries, Health and Biosciences Libraries
Chania, Crete, Greece, 6-8 August 2010
Call for papers

Dear Colleagues,
We are pleased to announce a Satellite Meeting in conjunction with the World Library and Information Congress: 76th IFLA General Conference and Assembly, "Open access to knowledge - promoting sustainable progress", 10-15 August 2010, Gothenburg, Sweden. The pre-conference Satellite Meeting “Open Access to Science Information: Trends, Models and Strategies for Libraries” will take place in the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania (MAICh) Conference Centre, Chania, Crete, Greece at 6-8 August 2010.

Call for papers

The Satellite Meeting is organized under the umbrella of the Applied Stochastic Models and Data Analysis International Society - ASMDA ( and it is aimed to all those in the Library and Information community interested in improving access to science information including life and physical sciences as well as medical and technical information.

We invite people to submit papers on the following topics:
  1.  Libraries, Open access and heritage,
  2. Organizational changes,
  3. Open resources management and quality,
  4. Users and services,
  5. Staff contribution and staff enrolment,
  6. Copyright and licenses,
  7. Technological support: preservation, migration, sustainability and interoperability,
  8. Institutional Repositories enhancement,
  9. Academic authors’ contribution,
  10. Open Access Journals and libraries journal subscription policies.

Proposal submissions

The language of the session is English. Presentations should be no more than 20 minutes in duration. There will be additional time for questions and discussion.

Interested colleagues are invited to submit a proposal for a paper, a workshop or a session on the topics listed above which should not be more that 500 words long. Also, a short curriculum vitae of the author(s) is considered important.

Proposals should be sent to:

Satellite Meeting Chair: Dr. Anthi Katsirikou, University of Piraeus Library, Greece (email ) or

Satellite Meeting secretary: Ageliki Oikonomou, MSc, University of Piraeus Library, Greece (email

Important dates:
  • June 30, 2010: Abstracts for papers and workshops to the Programme Committee.
  • July 15, 2010: Notification of acceptance of papers and posters.
  • July 20, 2010: Speakers Registration in order to be included in the Conference Program.

 Conference Halls and the Conference Location at:

Friday, June 11, 2010

SLA2010: Day 1 - First Open Board of Directors Meeting

Outdoors at the Market Cafe in the French Market district I and the other board candidates have been encouraged to attend the open Board of Director meetings at the SLA Annual Conference.This allows us to hear what they discuss as well as interact face-to-face with the current Board members.  (We're also listening in on the monthly board conference calls.)  This afternoon was the first of two meetings.  The breadth of topics discussed was amazing, especially at this meeting where some committee reports are presented.  We got through all of the agenda items today except for two which were saved for tomorrow for the second open Board meeting.

To be on the Board means being able to attend to the details of the Association, and take both a short and a long view of its needs.  Because much of the work of the Association is done by volunteers, there is also a concern that the work not be onerous (e.g., division reports).  While the work may not be onerous for many of the volunteers, the amount of work that the Board does is incredible.  The 14 members of the Board work hand-in-hand with the Association's 20-member HQ staff to oversee an Association of 9,700 members.  (Yes, that is fewer members from last year likely due to the economic turmoil that is occurring in libraries and other information organizations.) This is truly a working Board!  And...yes...I due want to participate on it and help SLA remain viable and successful!

BTW in past years, I've blogged for SLA during the conference.  Because SLA desires to create a level playing field for its candidates, I am not blogging this year.  I am twittering, though, which allows me to comment and interact with others in real-time.

What's in store for the rest of the day?  Besides enjoying the area, while trying to stay cool (it's 93F outside and high humidity), there is a Board dinner tonight and another opportunity for us all to get to know each other.

Photo above was taken yesterday in the French Market area of New Orleans, when I had a chance to walk around and see some of the city.  So nice to eat outside while listening to live jazz music!

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

SLA2010: Librarians and Information Professionals in the "Big Easy"

The Special Libraries Association Annual Conference is June 13-16, 2010 in New Orleans, LA.  This conference location and date have seen set for several years, and comes five years after hurricane Katrina (blog post) and weeks after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  The area, which has been making steady improvement since 2005 is now starting to feel the economic impact of the oil spill.  Let's hope that our presence (and the money that we spend) will help New Orleans continue to have good times.

If you look at the calendar on my web site, you will see a number of events that I'm involved in at the conference.  That, however, isn't the full story.  Since I'm a candidate for the Board of Directors, there are many other commitments on my plate, including attending the open Board Meeting on Friday and Saturday, being video-recorded on Saturday (2 min. "speech"), and much more.  I have a lot of stamina and I'll need all of it for this conference!

The theme of the conference is "Entering SLA's Next Century: Let the Good Times Roll!"  For many cultural heritage institutions (and the organizations around us), however, these are not the good times.  While some are seeing budgets that are not as tight as last year, others are seeing their budget slashed.  And there are ar growing number organizations that are going through severe cutbacks.

With our future in mind, we need to:
  • Invest in ourselves - Education and training keeps us knowledgeable, employable, and desirable.  There are many organizations that provide training opportunities and we need to take advantage of them.  And we must be willing to spend our own money, if necessary, to get the training that we need.  Consider it a birthday or holiday gift to yourself. 
  • Network more - While what we know is important, who we know can be more important.  We find information, resources, and even job opportunities through other people. When times are tough, our people network is even more important.  Unfortunately, networks take time to build and cultivate, so getting your network in shape is something that you need to do all the time.  No matter the state of your network, now is a good time to check-in with people and revitalize your bonds.  Try to create stronger connections with as many people as possible.
  • Advocate for all cultural heritage organization and for the use of information -We can't leave advocacy to some group of people and hope that it is enough.  We all need to be advocates!  Our representatives are great voices for us, but our voices (and those of our users) actually carry more weight.  I takes time and effort to advocate, but it can be as easy as making a phone call or sending an email/letter/fax. 
  • Be transparent - We, what we know, our content, our organizations, etc. need to be findable and known...not hidden.  Gone are the days when it is good to put information out of view.  Now if information is hidden and not findable, it is as if it doesn't exist.  And if you are not findable, you don't exist.  I know that transparency isn't easy because it requires trust that we might not automatically have.  But we need to take the step and be as transparent as possible.  It will help to position us and help us survive.

As you might guess, these are some of the things I'll be talking about during various events at the conference.  And if you know me, you know that these are beliefs that I hold dear.  I hope they resonate with you and with people next week.

    Tuesday, June 08, 2010

    SLA2010: Digitization-related vendors at the Special Libraries Association Annual Conference

    For those of you that are attending this, the following digitization-related vendors are exhibiting at the SLA Annual Conference.  The exhibit hall (INFO-EXPO) is open Sunday, June 13 - Tuesday, June 15. 
    • Access Innovation - taxonomy, conversion services
    • BackStage Library Works - conversion services
    • The Crowley Company - hardware
    • Cuadra Associates - DAM software
    • Data Harmony - taxonomy
    • e-ImageData - hardware
    • Ex Libris  - DAM software
    • InMagic - DAM software
    • Northern Micrographics - conversion services
    • OCLC - DAM software, services
    • PTFS - DAM software, conversion services
    • S-T Imaging - hardware
    • VTLS - DAM software
    If I missed anyone, please let me know.

    By the way, as a candidate for the SLA board of directors, I'll be in booth 1329 (SLA Marketplace) on Sunday from 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. with the other director candidates.  Please stop by and say "hello"!

    Monday, June 07, 2010

    Report to The National Archives on local authority digital continuity

    The National Archives in the U.K.has produced specific guidance for records managers in central and local "to devise a coherent electronic records management policy, an implementation strategy and performance assessment." One of their reports on the topic was recently released (see announcement below).

    Archives Sector Development at The National Archives has recently published a report on the digital continuity risks of large local authorities in England, accessible from:

    Digital Continuity requires strategic alignment, senior understanding and commitment and effective working relationships between Senior Information Risk Owners, ICT Managers, information assurance and governance officers and those responsible for business processes as well as records and information management. This report is not part of the central government-funded Digital Continuity project but was commissioned to provide an evidential basis for future dissemination of that project's findings to the wider public sector.

    The main findings are:
    • Varying degrees of senior engagement exist in the authorities concerned;
    • A few authorities have information management strategies capable of delivering continuity but only one of the 35 respondents appeared to be addressing it at the strategic, board level;
    • Many information management programmes are partial and disconnected, indicating significant continuity risk; and
    • Many authorities appear to be struggling with coordinating the main internal players in information management.

    The underlying survey, analysis and report writing were conducted by our contractors, Richard Jeffrey-Cook of In-form Consult and Philip Lord of the Digital Archiving Consultancy.

    In addition to our contractors, we'd like to thank Socitm, the Records Management Society and the Association of Chief Archivists in Local Government (now part of the Archives and Records Association [UK & Ireland]) for their cooperation and facilitation in running the survey. We hope that the report will be useful not just to us but also in providing levers for local authority information managers to influence their senior management.

    Please address any comments or queries to:

    Friday, June 04, 2010

    Event: Web Archiving, Oct. 14-15, 2010 in Paris

    This news comes from the European Archive.

    We are happy to inform you that the European Archive Foundation is organising a two-days training session on the Web Archiving in Paris on the 14th and 15th of October, 2010. 
    The training will cover all aspects of Web Archiving for librarians, archivists as well as technicians in charge of web archiving. Special attention will be given to providing the necessary background on Internet technologies in general and Web publishing in particular to understand the media and requirements for its preservation.
    This training will present a complete overview of web archiving methodologies with, for each of them, contextual background and assumptions as well as preferred use. 

    For further details and to participate in the next session, please fill the registration form on our website at and send it back to us by email at

    Thursday, June 03, 2010

    Report: JISC Project Report: Digitisation Programme: Preservation Study April 2009

     As received in email.

    JISC, the Digital Preservation Coalition, Portico and the University of London Computer Centre are pleased to announce the release of a new report investigating long term access to digitised collections.

    The digital universe grew by 62% in 2009, but those adding to these resources need to think long term if they want to make best use of their public funding. Clearly stated preservation policies are essential in guaranteeing that researchers in the future will be able to access and use a digital resource, according to a new report funded by JISC. But the responsibility needs to be shared between funders, who must articulate the need for data curation, and universities, who need to implement a preservation policy for each digital collection.

    The advice comes as the government announces a new 'right to data' so that government-held datasets can be requested and used by the public, and then published on a regular basis. JISC has invested more than £20 million in the last five years so that students and researchers can have instant and flexible access to a range of the UK's most important archival collections.

    Alastair Dunning, programme manager at JISC, said: "Although our initial goal was to examine our own projects, the recommendations and outcomes are relevant to funders and projects in many different sectors."

    Dr William Kilbride, Executive Director of the Digital Preservation Coalition, said: "JISC challenged us to work in fine detail and in broad strokes at the same time. We immersed ourselves in the detail of sixteen different projects with a brief to support these projects and use that experience for a strategic and lasting contribution based on hard empirical evidence."

    The results of this work published today contain recommendations for institutions, funders and those assessing funding projects and programmes.  The authors anticipate that the template used to survey the projects could also form a useful blueprint for funders and assessors in the future.

    Webinar Recording: What kinds of data are libraries managing, how are they doing it and with what staff?

    The Greater Western Library Alliance webinar on data curation entitled "What kinds of data are libraries managing, how are they doing it and with what staff?" is available for replay.  During the program, Anne Graham and Amy Stout of the MIT Libraries discussed issues around starting a data management program and provided an overview of what libraries need to know before starting a data management program.  Sayeed Choudhury discussed early experiences related to the Data Conservancy, one of two current awards through NSF’s DataNet program.  The webinar is 1 hr. 7 min. in length.

    Tuesday, June 01, 2010

    Call for Papers: EuroMed2010

    As received via email.

    EuroMed2010  - Call for Papers – New Deadlines  and best paper award
    Dedicated to Digital Cultural Heritage and Digital Libraries

    November 8 - 13th, 2010
    Limassol, Cyprus

    You are kindly invited to submit a paper to the EUROMED2010 joint conference which will provide an   opportunity to exchange research results, opinions, experiences and proposals on the best practice and hi-tech tools from Information and Communications Technology to document, archive, preserve, manage and communicate Cultural Heritage (CH). The main goal of the event is not only to illustrate the programs  underway but also excellent work wherever it is located and however it is supported, in order to promote a common approach to the tasks of e-documentation of World Cultural Heritage. Furthermore, regional capacities in the area of Cultural Heritage and IT will be facilitated in advancing their know-how through the exchange of information and generation of new ideas and cooperation's, where the world meets the finger prints of several ancient civilizations on earth.

    To reach this ambitious goal the topics covered will include experiences in the use of innovative recording technologies & methods and how to take best advantage to integrate the results obtained to build up new tools and/or experiences as well as improved methodologies for documenting, managing and communicating CH.

    The EuroMed2010 joint event will focus on interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary research concerning both cutting edge Cultural Heritage Informatics and use of technology for the representation, documentation, preservation, archiving and communication of CH knowledge. The scope includes standards, metadata and every phase of CH information technology: initial data capture/digitization, information/data processing, reconstruction, visualization and documentation as well as dissemination of results to the scientific and cultural heritage communities and to the general public (Multilingua, Multimedia Digital Library). We are also interested in aspects of the wider legal, IPR and ethical responsibilities of Cultural Heritage Informatics. Research subjects parallel the interests of  CIPA, ISPRS and EuroMed including culturally significant monuments, artefacts and sites as well as the activities of museums, libraries, archives, and organizations involved with their care.

    Those researchers who wish to participate in this event are invited to submit papers on original and unpublished work addressing the following subjects:

    • Digital Data Acquisition Technologies in CH
    • 2D and 3D Data Capture Methodologies and Data Processing in CH
    • On-site and remotely sensed data collection
    • 2D and 3D GIS in Cultural Heritage
    • Remote Sensing for Archaeology and Cultural Heritage Management &  Monitoring
    • CAD and FEM based Digital Reconstructions and 3D Modeling
    • Reproduction Techniques and Rapid Prototyping in CH
    • Visualisation Techniques (desktop, Virtual and Augmented Reality)
    • Virtual Reality in Archaeology and Historical Research
    • Multimedia, Multilingua, Data Management and Archiving
    • Construction and indexing of large scale Multimedia/Multilingual
    • Encyclopedias in Cultural Heritage
    • Computer Animation for CH Applications and Virtual Heritage
    • Game Technologies in Cultural Heritage
    • Non-Photorealistic Rendering of CH Data
    • Virtual Museum Applications (e-Museums and e-Exhibitions)
    • Digital/Virtual Documentation of Archaeological Excavations
    • Novel Internet-based Cultural Heritage Applications
    • Portals and Digital Libraries of Culture
    • Usability, Effectiveness and Interface Design for CH Applications
    • Innovative Graphics Applications and Techniques
    • Interactive Environments and Applications
    • Digital Libraries and e-Archives in Cultural Heritage
    • National Digital Libraries and Aggregators as cross-domain systems
    • Long term availability of content and its long term accessibility
    • Effective IC-Technologies for the creation, management and reuse of content  and knowledge
    • Storytelling and authoring tools
    • e-Learning in Cultural Heritage
    • Tools for Education, Documentation and Training in CH
    • Archaeological Analysis and Interpretive Design
    • Standards, Metadata, Ontologies and Semantic Processing in Cultural  Heritage
    • Authentication, Accreditation and Digital Rights Management
    • Legal issues: Water-Marking, Orphan Works, Copyrights and IPR
    • Professional and Ethical Guidelines
    • The Economics of Cultural Informatics and Tourism
    • Natural and Man initiated deconstruction of Cultural Heritage and  Prevention techniques.
    • ICT assistance in monitoring and restoration
    Submission of Papers:
    Submissions for the joint event are completely electronic, and both the  paper and all supplementary material must be submitted through the on-line  submission website.
    The conference accepts only original, unpublished work  written in English.  The 10 best papers will be published in the Elsevier journal:
    We are soliciting three types of contributions:
    • FULL research papers presenting new innovative results. These papers will  have a full-length oral presentation and will be published in a high-quality proceedings volume. Each submitted paper must not exceed 8 pages in total.
    • PROJECT papers focusing on the description of project organization, use of  technology, and lesson learned. These papers will have a short oral  presentation and will be included in a "Projects Papers" proceedings volume.  Each submitted paper must not exceed 8 pages in total.
    • SHORT papers presenting preliminary ideas and works-in-progress. These  papers will have a short oral presentation and will be available as posters  in conference breaks. They will be published in the "Short Papers"  proceedings volume. Each submitted paper must not exceed 6 pages in  total.
    For information concerning style and format of all submissions, please refer to:

    Important Dates:

    Paper submission FULL papers: June 14th, 2010 (24:00 UK Time). Paper submission PROJECT/SHORT papers: June 14th, 2010 (24:00 UK Time). Notification of Refereeing results:   July 15th, 2010

    • Camera ready FULL papers to printer: August 9th, 2010
    • Camera ready PROJECT/SHORT papers to printer: August 23rd, 2010
    • Proposals for showcases/ demo's:  June 28th, 2010
    For more information about the joint conference please visit the webpage: or directly contact the chair of the event at:

    The event is in cooperation with a number of European Commission Projects in the area of Digital Libraries / e-preservation in CH and the EU Member States' Expert Group on Digitization and Digital Preservation.

    Call for Proposals: Digital Govt. Info - Best Practices Exchange 2010

    Received via email.

    The Best Practices Exchange ( is an informal gathering of practitioners working to create systems to manage, preserve, and provide access to digital government information.  The Exchange provides an opportunity for them to discuss their real-world experiences, including best practices and lessons learned. Past attendees include librarians, archivists,  information technologists, educators, and researchers. 

    BPE 2010 will take place in Phoenix, Arizona, 29 September through 1 October.  The program includes keynote addresses by David Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, and Laura Campbell, Associate Librarian for Strategic Initiatives, Library of Congress and the leader of the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program.

    Exchange sessions -- the heart of the program -- feature two or three individuals sharing their experiences and ideas about how to manage digital collections.  Presentations are typically fifteen to twenty minutes, followed by informal, collaborative discussions with other practitioners.

    Don't let a lack of funding keep you from participating! Due to the generous support of the Library of Congress, National Digital Information and Infrastructure Program, there is no registration fee and some meals are provided.  A limited number of scholarships that cover three nights in the conference hotel are available for those who make presentations.


    Individuals are invited to propose presentations that will spark participant discussion in four areas.

    1. New ways of working
           The advent of new tools and new media suggest that libraries and archives will have to develop new ways of working in order to take advantage of them. What you are doing and what should our professions be doing to meet these new opportunities? Topics could include: innovative collaborations; new skills; strategic plans and prioritization; education and outreach; and evaluation and measurement.

    2. New tools
           Are you using or developing a new tool? Are you using an "old" tool in a new way? This is the chance to show off the newest tools, share creative uses for "old" favorites and pass on tips and tricks. Rapidly evolving technologies are allowing for automation, collaboration and innovation. Sessions in this track can be more “show and tell” like than those in other tracks, but actual demonstrations aren't required.

    3. New media
           More and more of the content people are creating, and which we will have to manage, is new to us. What are the expectations and the models? Who is creating what and how will archives adapt to the changes technology continually introduces? This track will focus on the collection and preservation of social media, the rising use of digital audio and video, and complex, evolving records types such as content from geographic information systems.

    4. Policy and Administration
           All our activities take place in an administrative, legal and fiscal context. This track will spotlight the challenges involved in designing, developing and managing programs for the long-term sustainability of digital objects.  Potential topics could include ensuring program and project transparency; finding and maintaining funding sources; achieving procedural accountability for a trusted digital repository; collaboration; supporting and developing partnerships; and developing and maintaining institutional policy and procedures.

    As the digital preservation is changing constantly and those working in the field are always coming up with new ideas, a fifth track is available for other topics.  If you have a great idea, we want to hear about it.


    Proposals should include a 200-500 word abstract, the proposed track (if applicable), and the name, title, and organization of each presenter. Please send all proposals to by 30 June 2010. The Committee will respond to all proposals by 1 August.  Submit proposals online