Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint

The TP! Wire Service carried an item about this blog posting earlier in the month and I've been trying to apply it as I work on upcoming presentations. The idea is that a PowerPoint presentation should contain no more than 10 slides, last no longer than 20 minutes, and the font used should be no smaller than 30 point. The 20 minute rule has to do with his environment (investment banking), but the whole idea of being succinct (and not our wordy selves) is an interesting one. At any rate, I thought the posting was worth mentioning here. And I'm struggling with the whole "succinct" thing and trying to cut down the number of slides I use. An interesting challenge!

BTW he (Kawasaki) has some interesting content, even for us that are in a totally different industry, like:

Monday, January 30, 2006

Event: The 3-D’s of Preservation: Disasters, Displays, Digitization

The announcement says:

Symposium co-sponsored by the Bibliothèque nationale de France and the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) - Preservation and Conservation Core Activity (PAC) and Section on Preservation and Conservation

March 8 - 10 2006 - Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Site F.-Mitterrand²

3-D films have once again become popular, especially in the IMAX format. 3-D glasses put the viewer in the middle of the action, as the actors seem to emerge from the screen. In much the same way, certain issues in preservation seem to emerge above others and surround librarians and archivists, clamoring for attention of leaders in the field.

The Bibliothèque nationale de France, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), the IFLA Preservation and Conservation Section and IFLA Core Activity on Preservation and Conservation (PAC) invite you to attend a special symposium to talk about three of the leading concerns in preservation circles today. Recent disasters around the world have highlighted the need for better planning and preparation to ensure the survival of library collections and cultural materials. Increasing numbers of exhibitions of library and archival materials point to the need for standards and best practices to make certain displayed items are not damaged. Digitization of materials is burgeoning around the world, yet we are not certain of the status of preservation of these important files.

Preservation experts from around the world will gather at the Bibliothèque nationale de France on March 8-10, 2006, to present papers and discuss these issues with members of the IFLA PAC Regional Directors and members of the IFLA Standing Committee on Preservation and Conservation.

Registration is free of charge but compulsory. Seats are limited in number; please find below the registration form to send back before February 28, 2006 by email marie-therese.varlamoff@bnf.fr or isabelle.fornoni@bnf.fr or by fax: +33-1-53-79-59-80

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ALA session: Copyright and mass digitization

myork writes:
This session was well-buried in the programming and meeting announcements, but the room was still full for an interesting discussion of copyright issues in the dawning era of mass digitization. The session was sponsored by the OITP Advisory committee and moderated by Clifford Lynch, who was introduced by saying that he needed no introduction to this crowd, rather than to say he is a “force for good.”

Panel participants included Jonathan Band, Esq., a copyright attorney; Liz Bishoff, Executive Director, Colorado Digitization Project; and, Dan Greenstein, University Librarian for Systemwide Planning and the California Digital Library.
You can read myork's entire notes from this session in the LITA blog.

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Saturday, January 28, 2006

Event: Digital Preservation in State Governments

I received this notice in e-mail.

You are invited and encouraged to attend...

Digital Preservation in State Governments: Best Practices Exchange 2006
March 27-28, 2006
Wilmington, NC, Hilton Riverside Hotel
Registration Deadline: February 23, 2006

This 2-day meeting, hosted by the State Library of North Carolina, provides a forum for staff from state governments and other organizations working to implement solutions for preservation and access to digital collections to come together and exchange hands-on experiences, lessons learned, and best practices in building digital repository systems; collecting and appraising digital assets; metadata; access to digital archives; digital preservation; and other areas. The "Exchange" also provides an excellent opportunity for you, educators in the field, to share your knowledge, exchange ideas, and forge relationships with practitioners in libraries and archives (librarians, archivists, records managers, IT professionals, product developers) that will be beneficial for everyone involved.

The meeting format is somewhat non-traditional in that there are no "official" presentation sessions. Rather, participants are asked to register their interests and willingness to share experiences in particular topic sessions where open discussions (with some moderating) will take place. There will be multiple sessions for each topic which should result in rich discussions and results. For more information on the meeting format, go to the meeting website at http://statelibrary.dcr.state.nc.us/digidocs/bestpractices

While the State Library cannot cover or assist with travel or meeting expenses for attendees, the registration fee is only $150 and we have negotiated an excellent rate with the Hilton Riverside in Wilmington: $59.75 for both single and double occupancy (you can't beat it!). Wilmington is served by two major airlines and is only a 2 hour drive from the Raleigh-Durham area.

We currently have 40+ participants registered representing the state libraries and/or archives in Arizona, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming, as well as various university libraries, the Library of Congress, OCLC, and the Internet Archive. We hope you will consider joining us.

For registration information and meeting details, go to the Best Practices Exchange 2006 website at http://statelibrary.dcr.state.nc.us/digidocs/bestpractices

If you have questions, please contact Christy Allen at 919-807-7447 or callen@library.dcr.state.nc.us

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Friday, January 27, 2006

Discussion among the students (Long Tail & preservation reformatting)

Last Friday, I posted a small part of my IST 677 lecture. This week, I asked students to comment on the readings they had done thus far for this class, and several mentioned the articles on the "Long Tail" which I wrote about last week. For some, the readings on the Long Tail really helped them grasp how much content is out there (and often hidden).

Other students have commented on the term "preservation." Everyone seems to understand that digitization does not preserve the original artifact, but does preserve the item's content (e.g., the words in a book). However, confusion sprang up over the term "preservation reformatting"; a phrase used Abby Smith's "Why Digitize?" (Preservation reformatting can be defined as a new format provides a faithful rendering of a printed text from the original item.) The traditional way of doing preservation reformatting is to microfilm the materials. Microfilming does has its problems, especially if the quality assurance procedures are lax, but microfilm stored in the correct conditions will last for many years. (And that has been proven.) Microfilm can also be read with low-tech equipment (a magnifier), unlike the high-tech requirements for viewing a digital image.

So, is digitization a valid way of doing preservation reformatting? Yes, but we must recognize that keeping that digital asset viable for the long-term is not easy. We might even say that it is fraught with problems! So if you are trying to preserve the information for the long-term (decades), in a different format from the original, creating microforms is still the way to go.

So why digitize if it is not about preserving the content of the original item? Access. Unlike microfilm, digital assets can provide greater access to the materials. Access assures that the materials are known, used and studied. Yup...access!

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Thursday, January 26, 2006

Posting: A DAM survey

HangingTogether, a blog by some people at RLG, has a good posting about survey results released by ClearStory on Digital Asset Management (DAM). The survey respondents seems to all have been museums. Guenter Waibel says:
  • 40% of respondents claim they are in the early stages of a DAM project, while 28% are busy weighing implementation options.
  • 63% of respondents use cross-departmental committees to cut through the fog of DAM issues.
  • Digital asset management was identified as the area of IT spending with the highest expectation of a spending increase in 2006.
  • The most important consideration in deploying a DAM for museums is the integration of the DAM with the CMS (Collections Management System) (cited by 78% of respondents).
Waibel finds the survey results to go along with his thinking on this matter, but finds a problem with part of the ClearStory whitepaper (where these survey results are stated). In the whitepaper, ClearStory equates DAM with digital preservation. Waibel says it "seems to seriously underplay the additional complexity involved in the latter." Indeed. DAM doesn't automatically ensure long-term access to the materials. I wonder if ClearStory will hear enough griping about this that they'll re-write the whitepaper?

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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Event: Online Course on Digitization

For people who are not taking classes at an Information School (e.g., SU's School of Information Studies), but would like to learn much more about digitization, here is an online class being offered by the Illinois Digitization Institute.

February 27 - March 17, 2006

The Illinois Digitization Institute is offering more on-line digitization courses in 2006! The first course will be from February 27 - March 17, 2006.

Using WebCT courseware, this web-based course will allow participants to contribute to online discussions and solve real world digitization problems right from their own computers.

Topics to be discussed are:
  • Benefits and costs of digitization projects
  • Issues involved in designing, setting goals,and evaluating digitization projects
  • Planning issues including: budgeting, workflow, copyright, and delivery
  • Metadata standards and metadata creation
  • Selection of materials to be digitize and equipment selection
  • Best practices and basic scanning and image manipulation skills

The course will run Mondays - Fridays each week, with the online portion taking approximately two to three hours per day. Other readings and assignments may take more time to complete. The registration fee is $300.00 per person. No refunds will be given after Friday, February 24, 2006.

For more information or to register for a course visit:


Questions? Please contact Amy Maroso by e-mail:
maroso@uiuc.edu or by phone: (217) 244-4946.

Article: Web helps librarians find digitized documents

FCW.com writes:
Late last week, the Government Printing Office –- the federal agency in charge of informing the public about the government’s work –- added an online database to its GPO Access Web site called the Registry of U.S. Government Publication Digitization Projects. It will serve as a locator tool for identifying federal document collections that are being digitized.
The project web site says:
Project entries derive from voluntary and solicited contributions from Federal depository and other libraries, Federal and other government agencies, and other non-profit institutions. GPO will input entries for the collections it digitizes. Project entries may include information about planned, in-process, ongoing, and complete projects.
Not a lot in this Registry yet, so let's hope it grows quickly.

Article: File This Under Data Overload

The January 2006 issue of Wired magazine has an article about the work being done at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. and its new Electronic Records Archives (ERA) project. ERA will be built over the next six years with the help of Lockheed Martin at a cost of $308 million. (Lockheed has a long history of working with information. Remember that it started Dialog, in the 1960s.) Research director of ERA, Robert Chadduck said, "The challenge is to create a transcontinental, persistent archive." This archive will need to be accessed from anywhere, at any time.

In the article, Allen Weinstein, the ninth archivist of the U.S., notes that he is worried about losing the expertise that the people at the National Archives have. He said, "They've been living with history." Nice to see the recognition that computers -- at least for the moment -- can't replace everything that humans do.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Digitizing at McMillan Public Library in Wisconsin

I was searching online to see what people had said about their selection criteria and ran across a document at the McMillan Memorial Library web site (part of South Central Library System), which then led me to find several other pertinent files there. The information would especially be of interest to a public library that is interested in digitizing materials, since everything is written from a public library's perspective.

1/28/2006: Text corrected and some text deleted. Some of the files listed above are not hidden, but are listed on the Local History section of the library's web site (at the bottom). Thanks Andy for your comment and pointers.

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Monday, January 23, 2006

DC 2006

The sixth International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Application (DC 2006) will be held October 3 - 6 in Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico. The web site contains information on the conference, including a call for papers.

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Global Digital Format Registry

Harvard University Library received a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for a two year project leading to the deployment of the Global Digital Format Registry (GDFR). The project will begin in February. A copy of the project proposal to the Mellon foundation can be downloaded from http://hul.harvard.edu/gdfr/documents/Proposal-2005-09-29.doc.

According to the web site:
The Global Digital Format Registry (GDFR) will provide sustainable distributed services to store, discover, and deliver representation information about digital formats.
The site goes on to say:
The wide diversity and rapid pace of adoption and abandonment of digital formats present an ongoing problem for long-term preservation efforts. As noted in the Library of Congress planning report, Preserving Our Digital Heritage: Plan for the National Digital Information Infrastructure Preservation Program (NDIIPP), "Longevity of digital data and the ability to read those data in the future depend upon standards for encoding and describing, but standards change over time." The purpose of the GDFR project is to address this concern by providing a sustainable resource for managing format-critical representation information necessary to the preservation function.

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Friday, January 20, 2006

The Long Tail

This morning I spent some time working on next week's lecture for the distance (online) class I'm teaching at SU. Two of the reading for this week were:
Commenting on these in my lecture, I wrote:

You might think the "Long Tail" articles more appropriate for a digital libraries class, but I included them here as a reminder of how much stuff has been created. They also get at the idea of access; the need to access older materials. Digitization can help us use those materials that are part of the Long Tail, either by digitizing the items themselves or by digitizing finding aidsÂ…even by creating and digitizing catalogue records.

Will we one day have everything digitized and available at any moment? (Like the crew of the starship Enterprise accessing anything from any point in time from their computers?) Who knows. For now digitization programs are deciding what materials they should digitize given the amount of money that they have. They know that they cannot afford to digitize everything, so the selection process (future lecture) is very important.

Even if everything is eventually digitized, I can imagine that people will still value the original artifacts. Like Admiral Kirk with his books in the Star Trek movies.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006

Digitization, document imaging or scanning?

In talking to people about the Digitization Expo scheduled for May 24 in Buffalo, I've found that some groups don't use the word "digitization." I guess this should not be a surprise. It turns out that local governments don't talk about doing digitization programs, but about doing document imaging as part of their records management. Likely the same holds true in many corporations, because they are dealing with documents, not with photographs, ephemera, etc.

Over lunch yesterday, a colleague and I talked about this and realized that when talk about digitization to a group that includes people from non-library backgrounds, we need to include the phrase "document imaging" as well as the word "scanning." Yes, digitization is much more than just scanning, but often those just beginning to think about this topic, think about scanning.

Just as we use various words to describe this thing called digitization (which -- by the way -- half of the world cannot pronounce correctly), we also need to use the words "project" and "program." Just because we used to the phrase, we talk about "digitization projects," but a project is a short-term thing and often a one-time event. What we want people to develop instead are "digitization programs" where digitization is part of what the organization does long-term in support of its mission.

I've already been using the term "digitization program" and talking about the distinction between a program and a project. Now I need to add in those different terms like "document scanning" when I talk to non-librarians, since those phrases will catch their interest. As we learn -- and forget -- we need to use the words that make sense to our audience.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Kirtas introduces machine that will digitize 2400 pages/hour

The APT BookScan 2400 will digitize books more quickly by using two cameras, instead of one. The article says:
The APT BookScan 2400 offers search and data management using XML, and document repurposing with OCR for 177 languages. The BookScan Editor provides an automatic batch mode processing operation that performs extensive image post-processing functions. This offers significant image cleanup and enhancement, multiple output options, and an integrated interface for structural metadata.
It is important to point out that the machine does not "scan," but takes VERY high-quality photographs of the pages. It uses a 16 megapixel camera (see product specs) as does the APT BookScan 1200. There is no indication given of the cost. [Feb. 9: This machine has a list price of $189,000. The APT 1200 currently lists at $149,000.]

For those of you at the ALA Mid-Winter conference, Kirtas is exhibiting there. In addition, the company's CEO (Lotfi Belkhir) is giving a presentation. I think he's talking about the difference in quality between manually digitizing books and using an automated system.

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Article: British Library Unveils Online Mozart Musical Diary

I ran across this article while working on something very unrelated! The article states:
Users can browse Mozart's handwritten pages and listen to short introductions from 75 of the eighteenth century composer's works, among them opening bars of a number of "lost" works, including "Little March in D," which was recorded for the first time for the online exhibit.
There are many other words on this site. You'll need the Shockwave plug-in to view the pages. The software really does a wonderful job integrating the text, audio, music and images. This is a VERY cool web site!

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Article: Library to store records, movies in Cold War vault

Once the 2.7 million sound recordings and 1.1 million moving image items are moved to this facility, they will be digitized.

The conversion process can be lengthy. For example, the batch of recordings that ships next month contains oldies from the Â’50s, Â’60s and early Â’70s in single record format that technicians must individually play back and reformat. So when a researcher requests an album, the employee must first play the recording on a turntable connected to a computer and then send the file to the Library.

For compact discs, high-speed duplication is impossible. Cassette tapes copied at high speeds have lower sound quality, making high-speed duplication unacceptable for preservation. And the digitize-on-demand process means researchers may need to wait a day for their requests.

One collector disagrees with the library's digitization plans. Paul Mawhinney, who has accumulated more than 3 million recordings, said:

I think that the actual collection in vinyl is actually far superior to digital format. Nobody knows how long [digital] is going to last.

As with many projects, this will be interesting to keep an eye on! Hopefully we all will be able to learn from their experiences.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Today I begin teaching Creating, Managing & Preserving Digital Assets

Yes, today the semester officially starts, although some students have been online since last week. The class I'm teaching at Syracuse University is IST 677: Creating, Managing and Preserving Digital Assets. I began this class a couple years ago and now it is taught by several people. This semester I retooled the syllabus to "kick it up a notch" (as Emeril Lagasse would say).

By the way, last year I asked for input on what people were teaching about digitization and got great input. Thank you! It helped to see how others are approaching the topic.

The class will be blogging, starting on Jan. 30. I'll let you know when that blog is ready for your eyes, so you can see what the students have to say (and maybe give them some feedback).

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Receive e-mail notification of Digitization 101 updates from Feedblitz

Following a colleague's lead, I've added Feedblitz as a way you can receive update notifications from this blog. I'll keep Bloglet for those currently using it, but will remove the ability for new users to sign-up for it. Bloglet can be very inconsistent, which is not good for those who are relying on it as a way of staying up-to-date. Feedblitz is evidently better maintained and supported. (Hurrah!)

If you are one of the 118 people reading this blog using Bloglet, please consider using Feedblitz instead. It is free and easy. E-mail from Feedblitz for Digitization 101 will come from the e-mail address Digitization101@mail.feedblitz.com or feedblitz@mail.feedblitz.com.

If you are a new to Digitization 101 and you want to receive timely, relevant digitization news by e-mail, you can sign up for Feedblitz by entering your e-mail address in the form located in the left-hand navigation column. Signing up for Feedblitz is free. You will, however, have to have an active e-mail account to which Feedblitz can send a subscription confirmation.

Also be aware that you can read this blog using your blog reader. There are buttons in the left-hand column for two blog readers: Feedburner and Bloglines. There is also a link to the Atom feed for this blog, which can be added to any blog reader. Using a blog reader is a great way of monitoring many blogs (and RSS feeds) at once. Personally, I'm hooked on Bloglines and have found that it has helped me track topics as well as locate new ideas.

1/18/2006: Added feedblitz@mail.feedblitz.com as an e-mail address notification might come from.

Thanks to K.M. Dames for pointing me to Feedblitz.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Event: Scholarship and Libraries in TransitionA Dialogue about the Impacts of Mass Digitization Projects

Scholarship and Libraries in Transition: A Dialogue about the Impacts of Mass Digitization Projects

Symposium Presented by University of Michigan University Library and National Commission on Libraries and Information Science

March 10 and March 11, 2006
Rackham Auditorium
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan

What are the transformative issues and implications that emerge from mass digitization initiatives? How will initiatives such as the Google parnership with academic libraries impact libraries, universities, government, information policy, publishing, and education? What are the professional, social, and economic issues? How will we identify and respond to the challenges and opportunities to shape future directions?

To help explore these questions, the University of Michigan University Library and the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science welcome your participation.

For more information, contact:
(734) 764-9358

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Should you store on CD or magnetic tape?

In the article "IBM expert warns of short life span for burned CDs," Kurt Gerecke, a physicist and storage expert at IBM Deutschland says, "If you want to avoid having to burn new CDs every few years, use magnetic tapes to store all your pictures, videos and songs for a lifetime." The article states that cheap CDs may last two years, while higher quality CDs may last five years. (If your experiences have been better than that, you should be very thankful.) This is in stark contrast to the 100 year life span of CDs that is often discussed. According to Gerecke, magnetic tapes are better for long-term storage since they have a life span of 30 years to 100 years. However, no storage medium will last forever, so timely migrating from one storage media to another is necessary.

When talking about what media to use to store archival quality images, people have very specific ideas. Many people -- including me -- point to CDs. People involved in mammoth digitization programs might talk about using hard drives for long-term storage, due to the space requirements. There is perhaps no correct answer, but rather an answer that first a particular situation. What is worth remembering, though, is that those files cannot be stored away and forgotten. They must be maintained or they will be lost.

By the way, "j" in her posting about this says:
Conservation OnLine provides lots of information about preserving various formats. It includes some items about CDs and digital files in its audio materials and electronic storage media sections.

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Sunday, January 15, 2006

Martin Luther King Jr.: Digitized and available illegally

A Washington Post article captures a sad reality, the family of Martin Luther King Jr. owns the copyright to his words and images, and has enforced that copyright. It is their right. Sadly, though, it means that many people cannot be as inspired by him as they might be if they could hear the audio of his speakers and read the full-text of his words. There was a time when King's "I Have a Dream" speech would be played on the radio on his birthday. (Yes, the whole thing.) Now, you only hear only snippets.

Some web sites have placed audio of Dr. King online illegally as well as made the text of his speeches available (e.g., American Rhetoric). One might argue that they are wrong for doing so. One could also argue that their illegal actions help to keep Dr. King's dreams alive.

American Rhetoric believes that its use of the speech is Fair Use. The web site says:

The site is making such material available in the effort to advance understanding of political, social, and religious issues as they relate to the study and practice of rhetoric and public address deemed relevant to the public interest and the promotion of civic discourse.

AmericanRhetoric.com believes that the nature and use of the artifacts on this site constitutes "“fair use"” of any such material as provided for in section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act. The material on this site is intended primarily for research and educational purposes, has been previously published, and is distributed without profit.

The amount of materials that the web site has digitized or digitally enhanced is amazing. There are some wonderful speeches here.

As we celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Jan. 15 although observed on Monday in the U.S.), think about his words and his family's right to his words. Under what circumstance would you go against those rights? Do you agree with those who have digitized King's materials and made that material available? Would your project have the same conviction and guts, if it felt it was right?

Addendum (1/16/2006): This is a good biography of Dr. King here. It includes the fact that he was originally buried elsewhere and then moved to the King Center after that was built. The King Center is having fiscalal crisis and may become part of the U.S. National Park Service. There are obvious pros and cons to that...

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A bad case of "canned ham," Part 2

Back in October, I noted that I was getting tons of comments that were not pertinent to this blog. I turned on the feature that makes people have to type in a stupid code as a way of eliminating those comments. And that worked for a while. Now the s-p-a-m comments are back -- somehow getting past that code -- and after battling them for a week (or so), I've decided to turn on the feature so that all comments must be approved (moderated) before being posted. I'm sorry to have to do this, but this bad case of "canned ham" has to stop.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Looking Back, Looking Ahead

On Jan. 4, I did a presentation for a local group of women business owners called Women Business Owners Connection (WBOC). The presentation was entitled "Looking Back, Looking Ahead" and the PowerPoint can be viewed here. This is a topic I've grown a bit passionate about and it does apply to you, your organization and the projects your working on. Let me explain.

A little background first -- When I incorporated my business, I was told that I should write something at the end of each year that captured in words that year's activities (an annual report of sorts). It was explained that there were some legal reasons for doing so, although it was also explained that it was mandatory. I didn't do anything at the end of that first year, but did at the end of year two. And then I saw the power of this activity.

We do accomplish much during the year, make many decisions and do a lot of activities. But we often have a hard time remembering what we did, especially if we need to recall something from several years ago. So capturing this information on some regular basis can be very helpful. It also allows us to see -- by looking back over the various reports -- how our businesses/organizations/departments have changed. We might also see indications of what changes we need to make in the future.

In the last couple of years, I've worked with two volunteer organizations on their year-end reports that they have sent to their members. Since each member sees a different view of the organization, this year-end report ensures that everyone has the same information about what was accomplished as well as notes about ongoing activities. With one organization, the report always turns up activities that weren't widely known (marketing done, classes held). In these cases, there is a sense of "wow" when people see the report and realize all of the activities.

How can you use this idea? Well, it is important that your organization keep track of what it has accomplished, so sit down (perhaps with a group of people) and make notes about last year. Oh, you say that it's not your job to do this? Well, you likely need to know what you did last year, so start with that. You might even then think about how your work impacted on your department or the organization as a whole. What did the organization accomplish because of you?
And be sure to answer this question:

What was the most important thing that you did in the last year?

The PowerPoint contains links to two handouts. One is a report produced by a local group that is an excellent example of the information that can be captured, as well as how it can be used to keep members informed. The other is the format that I use for my yearly report along with some notes to help you think about the categories. The format I use is very formal, but yours does not have to be.

Once you've thought about that last year (or whatever time period you're dealing with), then turn your attention to the year ahead. What changes do you want to make? What goals should you set? And remember to ask these questions:

When the year is done, what do you want to have accomplished?
What is the most important thing you'll do in the next year?

During the meeting, I mentioned keeping a "business journal" and was asked more about this during the Q&A. A business journal is a journal where you keep track of what you've done at work each day. I started this practice many years ago when I worked in a company where we had to produce monthly reports of our activities and accomplishments. I would write each day in my journal what I had worked on and the (general) amount of time I had spent on specific activities. (A great way of learning how much time specific things take as well as how much time gets wasted.) When I began my own business, I journaled using Microsoft Outlook. Now I use my electronic calendar and notes in my personal journal to jog my memory.

If you're finding that tracking details about "what you did when" would be helpful, consider starting a business journal to where you can write quick notes.

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Event: 2006 Digitization workshops at METRO

The Metropolitan New York Library Council has posted their list of digitization-related workshops for the first half of 2006. Some are for METRO members only, while others are open to the public. Check here for details.

Event: Copyright Challenges & Opportunities: Practical advice for the digital age

On Wednesday, April 12, the Ball State University Libraries is pleased to sponsor a one-day conference, "Copyright Challenges & Opportunities: Practical advice for the digital age." Today's library and information professionals must know how to properly use another person's intellectual property. The challenges in the copyright law can be intimidating. By attending this conference, you will hear from nationally-known experts in the field. Topics include:
  • The Top 10 Digital Legal Issues Facing Educational Institutions
  • Digital Licensing; Digital Fair Use
  • Update on Proposed Library Legislation
  • Update on "Orphan Works" and Proposed Legislation
  • Information Policy and Digital Works and more
Register online at www.bsu.edu/library/conference/copyright

For more information, contact Fritz Dolak at (765) 285-5330 or FDolak@bsu.edu

Featured speakers:
  • Jule L. Sigall, J.D., U.S. Copyright Office Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs and Head of the Office of Policy & International Affairs.
  • Kenneth Crews, J.D., Samuel R. Rosen II Professor in the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis and in the IU School of Library and Information Science and Associate Dean of the Faculties for Copyright Management. Dr. Crews was the 2005 recipient of the "L. Ray Patterson Award: In Support of Users' Rights" from the American Library Association.
  • Dwayne K. Buttler, J.D., Professor, Evelyn J. Schneider Endowed Chair for Scholarly Communication at the University of Louisville, University Libraries.
  • Michelle L. Cooper, J.D., practices in the areas of employment and intellectual property law; prosecutes copyright and trademark applications, negotiates and drafts licensing agreements and handles infringement litigation.
  • Kevin Smith, J.D., Director of Library and Instructional Resources at Defiance College in Defiance, Ohio, focuses on library and academic institution licensing concerns with emphasis on copyright and employment law.
Registration by Feb. 14 is $60 (a sweetheart of a deal!), then increases to $75 per person. After April 1, the cost is $100. State of Indiana IHETS or IPSE Committee members $60; all students $20. The registration fee includes a buffet lunch.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Event: Digitization Expo, May 24, Buffalo, NY

The Western NY Library Resources Council (WNYLRC) will be hosting a Digitization Expo on Wednesday, May 24 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at the Events Centre, 11163 Main Street in Clarence, NY (a suburb of Buffalo). This the first such event in Upstate NY. The event is free, although attendees are encouraged to register in advance for planning purposes. [Go here for registration information.]

What will be at the Digitization Expo?
  • There will be vendors exhibiting and demonstrating hardware, software, and services that are used in digitization programs. Invited are companies that can digitized "hardcopy" materials as well as audio and video. Companies that provide software for digital asset management and federate search have also been invited. Companies from a broad geographic region are being invited, who are known for their products and services.
  • There will be presentations given by specific digitization programs that will discuss what they did and how they did it. Representatives from highly regarded programs are being invited, and include programs from outside of the region.
Who should attend the Digitization Expo? Anyone planning on digitizing materials or who already has a digitization program underway. This includes people from libraries, archives, museums, corporations, not-for-profit institutions, and local governments. Decision-makers and those involved at the operations-level will find this event helpful.

How can you get more information?
  • If you are a vendor and have not been contacted about this event -- and are interested in exhibiting -- please contact me (Jill Hurst-Wahl) at hurst@hurstassociates.com. I am working with WNYLRC on this event.
  • If you are interested in attending, stay tuned here (Digitization 101) and I'll post more details as they become available. Formal announcements will be sent to several discussion lists in NYS and elsewhere, so you may see information on this event in your e-mail.

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Monday, January 09, 2006

Booklet: Campus Copyright Rights and Responsibilities: A Basic Guide to Policy Considerations

This 30-page booklet was developed by representatives of the Association of American Universities, the Association of Research Libraries, the Association of American University Presses, and the Association of American Publishers. It covers topics such as:
  • What is copyright
  • The public domain
  • Licenses
  • The TEACH Act
  • Coursepacks
  • Electronic Reserves
...and much more.

The goal of the work is to lay the groundwork for institutions to develop their own policies. Looks like it does a good job of communicating the basics so that necessary conversations can begin.

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Article: Copyright Clearances, Part 1: Risk Analysis

K. Matthew Dames has started a series in the SESO CopyCense blog called CommuniK.™ The first installment is on copyright clearance (Copyright Clearances, Part 1: Risk Analysis). In intoducing the topic of copyright clearance, Dames says:
This article is the first in a series that reviews several ways information professionals can use protected works freely without getting written permission from the copyright owner, signing a license, or working with a third-party publisher representative such as the Copyright Clearance Center. The goal of the series is to arm information professionals with the tools to help them analyze and properly use what federal law describes as “limitations” on the exclusive rights that copyright owners receive.
As for CommuniK.™ it:
will present articles, essays, editorials...that deal with the intersection of law, business, and technology. The CommuniK.™ series also will be used to present multimedia work, including streaming broadcasts and podcasts.
Sounds like a series worth keeping and eye (or ear) on.

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Article: Google's Great Works in Progress

This Dec. 22 Business Week article points to the problems with Google's quality that I pointed out on Nov. 30. And what do Google's partners think of its quality? Business Week states:
So far, Google's results have failed to wow library partners. While all of the partners interviewed made certain to note that they have been extremely impressed by how carefully and safely Google's staff handles the books, they concede the overall quality of the scans hasn't been great. "We at Harvard do a more careful and high-quality digitization when we do it for our own purposes, there's no question" says Sidney Verba, director of the Harvard University Library.
Business Week created a slide show of problems. Google has said that it will fix the problems found. (Of course, this raises the cost of the project.) Hopefully it is putting steps in place to ensure that these problems do not happen again.

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Friday, January 06, 2006

Events: SOLINET Winter 2006 Preservation Classses

As found on the Archives discussion list.

SOLINET, Inc., the Southeastern Library Network, is pleased to announce our Winter 2006 Preservation classes:

Date: Wednesday, February 1, 2006
Place and Time: Live Online Class, 2 pm to 4 pm
Price: $100.00 for SOLINET members, $140.00 for non-members; early bird discounts and late fees apply. Link for more information:

Date: Wednesday, January 25, 2006, February 8 and 22, 2006
Place and Time: Live Online Class, 10 am to 12 pm
Price: $155.00 for SOLINET members, $225.00 for non-members; early bird discounts and late fees apply. Link for more information:

In an effort to promote disaster preparedness around the southeast, SOLINET is offering a series of disaster classes. Each class costs only $25! Eight (8) Disaster Preparedness and five (5) Hurricane Preparedness classes will be held during March and April 2006. Dates and times for
these sessions will be posted on the SOLINET website as they are confirmed. www.solinet.net/preservation/disasterseries.

Locations of the classes include: Augusta, GA, Baton Rouge, LA, Birmingham, AL, Charleston, SC, Ft. Myers, FL, Greensboro, NC, Jackson, MS, Lexington, KY, Nashville, TN, Panama City, FL, Richmond, VA, and Woodbine, GA.

Date: Friday, February 24, 2006 and Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Place and Time: Live Online Class, 2 pm to 4 pm
Price: $100.00 for SOLINET members, $140.00 for non-members; early bird discounts and late fees apply. Link for more information:

Date: Thursday, February 16, 2006
Place and Time: University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 9 am to 4 pm
Price: $195.00 for SOLINET members, $205.00 for non-members; early bird discounts and late fees apply. Link for more information:

Date: Thursday and Friday, February 9-10, 2006
Place and Time: Georgia Archives, Morrow, GA, 8:30 am to 4 pm on Thursday, February 9th and 8:30 am to 12 pm on Friday, February 10th
Price: $165.00 for SOLINET members, $205.00 for non-members; early bird discounts and late fees apply. Link for more information:

For more information or to register, contact Vanessa Richardson at 1-800-999-8558, vanessa_richardson@solinet.net or visit our website at http://www.solinet.net for full descriptions and online registration.

These classes are funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access. Any registrant within the host state qualifies for the member rate.

Event: Digital Preservation in State Government: Best Practices Exchange 2006

I just saw a posting for this. It will be March 27-28 in Wilmington, North Carolina at the Hilton Wilmington Riverside. The web site says:
Join us in beautiful historic downtown Wilmington, North Carolina for this rich 2-day forum in which librarians, archivists, records managers, and other information professionals will share their own experiences in managing and preserving digital state government information for public access.

Bring examples of your successes, failures, and lessons learned to share with colleagues in facilitated "exchange sessions". You will most certainly provide and take away something of value from this experience.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) Featured Project

The web site says:
The aim of this series is to highlight some of the DPC member projects listed in the DPC Members' Projects Table

A project will be highlighted on the Home Page of the DPC website every 6-8 weeks and older versions will be retained in the table of DPC Member projects.

In the first of the series, Andrew Wilson, Preservation Services and Projects Manager for the Arts and Humanities Data Service, was interviewed by Maggie Jones about the SHERPA DP project.

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Notes from the Statewide Digitization Planners Conference

In October 2005, OCLC hosted a Statewide Digitization Planners Conference in Dublin, OH. (You can view the announcement about it here.) 77 people were able to attend the conference including people representing 39 collaborative digitization projects. [There is a not a statewide project in New York State, but several people from the library councils were able to attend.]

I'm sure that many of the attendees returned to their institutions and circulated their notes from the conference. (Personally, I've seen notes taken by two people.) Now a Summary Report about the conference has been published. For those who could not attend, this gives you a peek into the presentations as well as useful information for you to consider as you digitize materials. For those who attended the conference, these notes may provide information that your personal notes do not.

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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Event: DRM in Higher Education

As posted on digital-copyright:
  • Are you seeking greater clarity on fact versus fiction in the realm of Digital Rights Management (DRM) in higher education?
  • Do you want to explore the complex issues involved in managing copyrights on campus?
As part of its 2005-2006 Intellectual Property in Academia Online Workshop Series, the Center for Intellectual Property (CIP) at University of Maryland University College (UMUC) is pleased to assist you in this quest:

DRM in Higher Education
January 23 - February 3, 2006
Moderated by Kimberly Kelley, Ph.D., and by Clifford Lynch, Ph.D.
Dr. Kelley is Assoc. Provost, ILS, and Exec. Dir. of the CIP at UMUC.
Dr. Lynch is Exec. Dir. of the Coalition for Networked Information and the CIP's 2004-2006 Intellectual Property Scholar.

This asynchronous online workshop is designed for instructional design and information professionals, librarians, faculty, university counsel, and administrators.

WORKSHOP FORMAT: This two-week online workshop will include course readings, chats and online discussions, and daily response and feedback from the workshop moderators. Please visit the web site for all course objectives: http://www.umuc.edu/cip/ipa/workshops.html#dmca

Early registration--only $125--closes JANUARY 6.
Regular registration--$150--closes JANUARY 20.
Reserve your space now at
For additional information call 240-582-2965 or visit http://www.umuc.edu/cip/ipa

Register Now for the last online workshop in this series...

Copyright and Academic Culture
February 20 - March 3, 2006
Moderated by Siva Vaidhyanathan, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Culture and Communication at New York University.

Early registration--$125--closes FEBRUARY 3.
Regular registration--$150--closes FEBRUARY 17.
Reserve your space now at
For additional information call 240-582-2965 or visit http://www.umuc.edu/cip/ipa


JUNE 14-16, 2006


The information life-cycle

As I reflected this morning on Seth Godin's comments yesterday, my mind moved to a different aspect of what he was saying. Yes, there may develop an easier way of constructing citations. But what is being lost, as we move further into this electronic world, is a clear information life-cycle and understanding of what the type of documents mean in (and to) that cycle. Actually, I would bet that 99% of the world has no clue that there is an information life-cycle. (Reporters and librarians do...I hope.) With information appearing in electronic form more quickly, the examination or evaluation that occurred as materials moved through the life-cycle is being changed and sometimes lost.

How did my mind move from citations to the information life-cycle? When you do research, you are looking for pieces of a puzzle. Finding information in a book is fine, but books can be stale and are stagnant. What can be better -- depending on the topic -- is to locate articles, especially if you're researching an area that is changing. Some articles begin as press releases, so you might look for the original press release since it may contain information that was not in the article. Yes, a press release may be "corporate" viewpoint, but still good information. Of course, the best information often comes from conversations. This is were you'll get an inside view and hear rumors. (And many rumors contain elements of truth in them.) When you look at a footnote or bibliography, the information in the citations tells you where the information came from (source type) and where on the information life-cycle that person was looking. That tells you something about the person's effort, quality of work, etc.

As we know, placing more primary source materials online through digitization programs helps researchers. Instead of using materials further down the information life-cycle, they can use the original documents. To help these researchers, programs need to include information on their web sites about how the materials should be cited. Please don't assume that it is obvious. (It's not.)

Thinking again about citations, for those of us who are teaching, we need to remember to explain why citations are important and what they tell us. And we need to explain about the types of sources that can be found -- both in hardcopy and electronically -- and how to recognize them (which can be difficult online for many people) as well as judge their quality. This is a job/task that we can't forget.

Many years ago, I did a series of Info-Tips in e-mail and one was on the information life-cycle. In 2003, I guest lectured at a class in SU's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. The one handout was on the information life-cycle and is what I have referenced here.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Seth Godin talks about creating bibliographies

Seth Godin, whose forte is marketing, wrote a post this morning about creating bibliographies. He says:

A young friend of mine needed to create a bibliography for a school project this weekend.

I had forgotten how annoying this task was. I was also pretty sure it was obsolete.

Why, exactly, does a teacher or reader need to know the city a book publisher is based in?

If your goal as a reader (or someone checking for plagiarism or quality of research) is to get to the books that the writer used, you need exactly one piece of data: the ISBN.

He's an intelligent man and an author. Yet he doesn't realize that not every item that might be in a bibliography has a ISBN, nor do all books have ISBNs. Therefore, why specific information is placed in a bibliography so the item could be found later (sometimes much later) is lost on him.

He is not alone. I've seen this problem with high-priced reports sold to corporations in not properly citing where information has been obtained. With them, though, the thought might be that the writer has included all that the corporate reader needs to know. That corporate reader will not need to check the references or want to look at the background materials in more depth.

As information professionals and teachers, we know what to capture about a resource so that we might find it again. Sometimes it is enough to have the URL; sometimes we know we'll need much more. Our reasoning is something that we've evidently failed to communicate to others. Looks like we need to do a better job.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Digitizing without the duplication of efforts

The JISC/CURL report mentioned earlier noted that someone (or some agency) needs to coordinate efforts so that there is not the duplication of effort. Programs try not to duplicate the efforts of others already as a way of saving money. (Why spend money doing what someone else has already done?) But it is difficult to know what another organization has planned unless everyone discloses their intent ahead of time AND that disclosure can be found. There is no central authority keeping track of who is doing what.

Who should be that authority? In some regions, that authority might be the state library. Some state libraries seem prone to step up to this role. However, it would be better if that coordination came from the national level to better ensure that regions didn't duplicate efforts (not just small institutions). Checking in with this central authority might be part of the grant process for obtaining funding.

A benefit would not only be that efforts would not be duplicated, but that partnerships might be formed. Like projects could concentrate on digitizing complementary materials rather than the same materials. The results is that better collections would be created.

Imagine if the national libraries took on this role. They then could exchange information, promote projects (digitized collections) and perhaps also work to eliminate duplicate efforts (e.g., a library in Europe digitizing the same materials as a library in South America).

And then imagine the potential bureaucracy. Yuck!

Okay...so let's re-imagine a faster, less bureaucratic way of doing this. Could someone create a central database where people could enter the project/program information along with a "status" that said where they were in the process? Then other programs could search the database BEFORE starting something new to see if someone is already doing it. Programs could talk to each other if the materials sounded similar, then decide if they should collaborate. It might not eliminate all duplication, but it could be a good start.

Who should create and house the database? The United Nations with help (marketing/promotion) from the national libraries. It could be a funding requirement that programs check this database and then disclose how their projects would be different or complementary. Perhaps we should as UNESCO to take this on?

If the U.N. can't do it then maybe one of the companies that produces library management software -- and thus has the capacity for this as well as the people network to pull it off -- could do this (e.g., SirsiDynix). The problem with having a company do this, of course, is that companies aren't always trusted. (Even companies like OCLC have their detractors.)

Perhaps for now we'll just have to follow the developments in the U.K. and see how they handle this. Hopefully they'll find a way of eliminating duplication without creating a bureaucratic mess. We won't be able to wait for the final result of their efforts before we do something ourselves, but perhaps we can see enough of their work to know if we should duplicate their efforts in order to eliminate duplicate digitization programs.

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Creative Commons made its goal!

Thanks to all those who read this blog and donated to their effort. If you're unfamiliar with their valuable work, go here to read and see more.

Study in Digitization Practices for Audiovisual Materials - SAA

As posted on the Archives discussion list:

This year, Cinetech (an Ascent Media Company), partnered with the archival community to coordinate a field-wide study of digitization practices for still and moving image archives. Our goal is threefold:
  1. to help keep the field up-to-date on digital technologies;
  2. to ensure that members of the archival/library/university/museumcommunities make the best use of their resources; and
  3. to ensure that preservation/restoration service providers take intoconsideration the needs of the community.
The first stage is a field-wide survey which will be available on-line until January 15th. If you have not yet responded, we strongly encourage you to do so. While all demographic information is being kept confidential, the general results are being made available to all participants and will be reported to the community. The higher the response rate, the more accurate the results. To get started simply click on this link:


Your involvement is greatly appreciated and a service to the community.
Thank you for participating.


Tom Tisch
Cinetech, 27200 Tourney Rd., Valencia, CA 91355; Tel: 847-657-9002; Email:ttisch@cinetech.com


Janice Simpson
Ascent Media Group, 27200 Tourney Rd., Valencia, CA 91355; Tel: 661-222-9073; Email:jsimpson@ascentmedia.com

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Article: UK Report: Digitization Coordination Needed

In the UK, a report published in November by Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) and Consortium of Research Libraries in the British Isles (CURL) "recommends a new task force to coordinate national efforts, avoiding duplication and gaps. The report also recommends that user needs be better understood, especially in areas like science and the social sciences."

According to the report, public sector projects/programs have been unstructured, piecemeal and
fragmented and a stark contrast to programs such as the one started by Google.

The report, "Digitisation in the UK: The case for a UK framework," contains 17 recommendations including:
  • Create a single point of information on current and previous digitisation projects.
  • Funding bodies should include provision of information to digitisation registers as a condition of funding.
An article about the report gives a very brief summary. JISC and CURL also issued a press release.

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