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1997-2007: the main challenge after two decades of digital preservation research is the weakness of the professional and institutional networks

Maria Guercio

Maria Guercio

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Maria Guercio is President of Associazione nazionale archivistica italiana


The main challenge after two decades of good research is the weakness of international and national professional and institutional networks with reference to the capacity of sharing knowledge and solutions.

It is a paradox that in the modern society, interconnected by definition, the international community involved in digital preservation (more robust and interrelated than other professionals and rich of two decades of good research and experience) does not have planned tools and communication channels strong enough to play with continuity its role with success. In fact and indeed, the networked digital world is more fragmentary than in the past, while the archival heritage can survive for future only if our professional and institutional community will be able to put in place a long-term program of research and a stable cooperation framework. The relations we have to create and maintain could be able to re-enforce our capacity of identifying and improve solutions by cooperating and sharing our experiences, our successful achievements, but also our failures.

The lack of continuity and the increasing isolation of the stakeholders is the most critical aspect of the whole sector, but the international funding and coordinating bodies do not seem to be aware of this. For instance, this factor has seriously weakened the European effort in this area and prevented the completion of ambitious and promising projects and implementation plans, at the point that no robust programs for funding preservation projects are in place within Horizon 2020 and no coordination is available to discuss and compare the models developed in the European countries. A similar attitude is present in the ICA initiatives where a temporary group of expert has been created for handling with digital records (DREG, http://www.ica.org/en/our-professional-programme/expert-group-digital-records-dreg), but no resources are available neither for events nor for meetings. 

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Fifteen years with digital preservation

Zhenxin Wu

Zhenxin Wu

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Zhenxin Wu is Professor of the Information System Department and Deputy Director of the Digital Preservation Center of Chinese Academy of Sciences at the National Science Library in Beijing, China


 

Wu 1

与长期保存共同成长的十五年

        长期保存对我而言,是我研究生涯的开始,之前我是一个图书馆系统程序员。2003年,张晓林教授找到我,希望我能参与斯坦福大学图书馆的一个项目协助做些事情,也就是日后很成功的LOCKSS项目。出于对这所著名大学的敬仰,我立刻就答应下来。从配合LOCKSS项目在中国北京建立一个测试节点开始,我逐步了解了数字资源长期保存的内涵,以及这项工作的重要意义,并产生了浓厚的兴趣。2004年,在北京作为工作人员参加组织了第一届数字资源长期保存国际会议(iPRES),目前iPRES已成为长期保存领域最有影响力国际会议。2005年Neil Beagrie先生介绍我到英国数字保管中心(DCC)作高级访问学者,在爱丁堡,我学习到很多新东西,也看到很多新思想的碰撞,结识了很多长期保存领域的专家。

        回到北京后,在中国科学院的资助下,我开始从事电子出版物的长期保存研究和试验,对文件格式管理、fixity check,起源信息管理,数据迁移,以及可信赖审计与认证等进行了深入的研究,与团队一起开发了基于Fedora的电子期刊存档试验系统,并致力国家层面的宣传呼吁。

       

 

图1.电子期刊存档试验系统功能框架  

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PERSIST: A Global Dialogue on Digital Preservation

Rob Buckley

Rob Buckley

Last updated on 1 December 2017

Robert Buckley works for the National Archives of the UAE in Abu Dhabi


PERSIST: A Global Dialogue on Digital Preservation

To those unfamiliar with PERSIST, it is a project within the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme, whose International Advisory Committee is currently chaired by Dr. Abdulla Alraisi, Director General of the National Archives of the UAE. The Memory of the World (MoW) Programme was created in 1992 to facilitate preservation of the world’s documentary heritage and to assist in providing universal access to it.

When my colleague Hamad Al Mutairi, Director of the Archives Department here at the National Archives of the UAE, and I first sat down to discuss this contribution, he drafted the outline of a general digital preservation policy. We realize that having a policy for digital preservation or digital continuity is not a unique thing; numerous institutions have one already, suitably adapted to the environment in which they operate. What is different is that the effort here is partly stimulated by our participation in the PERSIST project.

The PERSIST project is essentially a digital component of the MoW programme. It is an outgrowth of the The Memory of the World in the Digital age Conference  held in Vancouver in 2012. PERSIST aims to address the challenges of long-term digital preservation and the risks of losing access to part of our digital heritage. Partnering with UNESCO on PERSIST are the International Council of Archives (ICA) and the International Federation of Libraries Associations and Institutions (IFLA).

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Building blocks of digital preservation in India

Dr. Dinesh Katre

Dr. Dinesh Katre

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Dr. Dinesh Katre is Associate Director and Head of Department at the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) in Pune, India


 It is a matter of great pride for me to have associated myself with the global cause of preserving information in digital era. I wish to congratulate the team of Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) for taking this initiative to celebrate International Digital Preservation Day (IDPD)! This can be a very effective tool for creating awareness about rampant digital obsolescence among general public.

We have been working on digital preservation in India since 2009. I take this opportunity to present an overview of “Centre of Excellence for Digital Preservation”, the flagship project undertaken as part the National Digital Preservation Programme sponsored by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India. The Centre of Excellence of Digital Preservation is established at C-DAC, Pune, INDIA. Being the Principal Investigator (PI) of this project, I would like to share information on major outcomes of this project.

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Digital Preservation at the University of Melbourne

Jaye Weatherburn

Jaye Weatherburn

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Jaye Weatherburn is Digital Preservation Officer at the University of Melbourne


Background

Three years ago, at the September 2014 meeting of Academic Board at the University of Melbourne, the Digital Preservation 2015–2025: Strategy[i] and Implementation Roadmaps[ii] were endorsed. By early 2016 the Digital Preservation Project team had formed and commenced the “Establishment phase” towards implementing the Strategy. A central aim of the Strategy is to establish a university ecosystem of repositories with the capability to archive, preserve and provide ongoing access to the university’s digital assets.

The project has survived and thrived through a large-scale university restructure, and significant resourcing challenges, thanks to the ongoing dedication of the library Research & Collections team at the university, led by Donna McRostie.

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Digital Preservation of Indian Cultural Heritage: Issues and Challenges

Ramesh Gaur

Ramesh Gaur

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Dr. Ramesh C Gaur works at the Jawaharlal Nehru University


At the outset, let me congratulate all on initiating 30th November as the International Digital Preservation Day (IDPD17).

My introduction to digital preservation started in 2005 when I visited Germany with the support of Max Mueller Bhawan. My three-week stay, one week each at Belfield University, Belfield; German National Library Frankfurt; and State Gottingen University Library, Gottingen; provided me opportunity to closely study some of the digital preservation initiatives in Germany in particular and in Europe in general. The interaction with researchers working at project like NESTOR, KOPOL, and REUSE, etc., helped me in learning the basics of digital preservation. After coming back from Germany, I shared my experience in the form of various lectures delivered at various national and international conferences in India. Since then, digital preservation is one of the prime area of my interest.

Digital preservation is a process of preserving both digitized and born-digital contents to a distant future in reusable condition for access by its users. It involves a set of systematic guidelines, processes, strategies, technology and approaches.' The technological obsolescence, shorter and uncertain life-period for current storage media, information glut, and internet revolution are some of the major factors which have made preservation of digital information more complex and challenging. Being a librarian, preservation for access is key to my thought process.

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How do I keep my digital films safe

Joshua Ng

Joshua Ng

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Joshua Ng is the Information Technology (IT) & Technical executive at the Asian Film Archive (AFA) based in Singapore.


Hi Joshua,

I made some short films a couple of years back. Some of them were submitted to competitions and won some awards. I have been keeping them in an external hard disk, thinking that since the files are backed up, it should be safe. But I had quite a scare the other day when my computer couldn't detect the hard disk. Fortunately when I tried it with another USB cable it worked. Is there something I can do to ensure my short films are safe?

Warm regards,

Paul Soon

Filmmaker

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Plans are my reality

Yvonne Tunnat

Yvonne Tunnat

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Yvonne Tunnat is Preservation Manager at the ZBW Leibniz Information Centre for Economics


I was fresh from university when I started my job as a preservation manager in October 2011 at the ZBW. Having taken a module named “Digital Preservation” during my studies of library and information science and after a 9-week-internship at the Digital Preservation Department of the university of Utah, I obviously was the best they could find for the job, although I knew next to nothing and they knew it.

Only, I did not know it. I felt self-confident and well-prepared. I had seen the OAIS slides several times, I knew our ingest was more or less solved and I did not need to think about access as we run a dark archive, so preservation planning was the one big task left on my desk.

There was this software, JHOVE, which miraculously was able to decide if a PDF was ok, flagging the bad ones for later preservation actions. As I knew nothing (like Jon Snow), I took all JHOVE findings as granted.

My preservation plan was as following:

  1. Gather all bad PDF
  2. Migrate them to good PDF
  3. Check if they still look alike

Thanks to JHOVE, the first step was easy. I left the second step to our IT guy, who quickly built a small java program, which transformed all the bad PDF into good ones. At least, after the migration JHOVE could not find anything wrong with them anymore.

But I had to rack my brain about the third step. Somehow I needed to compare the new PDF version with the original to see if there were any changes that would make the data producer angry (like layout changes, missing content etc).

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What does digital preservation mean to you?

Jaye Weatherburn

Jaye Weatherburn

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Jaye Weatherburn is Digital Preservation Officer at the University of Melbourne


In a review conducted in 2016 for the University of Melbourne’s Digital Preservation Project, key research staff at the university were asked the question, What does digital preservation mean to you? The primary aim of this review was to identify and document gaps in service provision for research data management, and to highlight the main barriers impeding the implementation of sustainable digital preservation.

The responses from the review have been anonymised, remixed slightly, and in parts edited for length, but still accurately represent the answers as provided. They are presented here in both transcript form, and as an audiovisual creation using the Mac OS X El Capitan (version 10.11.6) speech-to-text voices: Fiona, Alex, Karen, Samantha, Tessa, and Daniel.

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Twittering on the edge of two conferences: Themes of power and empowerment at ASA-ITIC and iPRES 2017

Rachel Tropea

Rachel Tropea

Last updated on 30 November 2017

Rachel Tropea is a Senior Research Archivist at the University of Melbourne in Australia. 


2017 has been a year for digital preservation firsts – the first ever International Digital Preservation Day on 30 November 2017, the University of Melbourne became the first Australian institution to join the Digital Preservation Coalition, and on a personal level it was my first time attending iPRES.

iPRES is the major international conference on the preservation and long-term management of digital materials. In 2017 it was hosted by Kyoto University, and the theme was Keeping Cultural Diversity for the Future in the Digital Space — From Pop Culture to Scholarly Information.

At the same time, the Australian Society of Archivists Conference & Information Technologies Indigenous Symposium (ASA-ITIC) took place in Melbourne, and its theme was Diverse Worlds.

Although these communities confer separately, their concerns are largely the same as evidenced in part by their shared theme of diversity this year. And, as I hope you’ll see from my discussion of ASA-ITIC, the challenges posed by the keynote speaker Jarrett Drake go to the very core of what we all do.

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