Digitization Discussion

March 25th, 2011 § 4 comments

Neo Libre – Content Digitization from Neo Libre on Vimeo.

The two most popular recommendations for use of our open week on April 5 were (1) discussing digitization and (2) welcoming a guest speaker. I’ve combined the two by inviting both Wendy Scheir, Director of the Kellen Archives, and Allen Jones, Director of Digital Library Programs at The New School, to talk with us about the practical concerns of digitization in libraries and archives. They’d like to respond to your specific interestsso please propose discussion topics and questions by replying to this post.



§ 4 Responses to Digitization Discussion"

  • Darrell says:

    I guess I’m not interested in digitization specifically, but more preservation as a whole. I’d be interested to know what the library/Kellen Archives are doing to ensure preservation of their materials, be they digital, analog, or other. For instance we all know that no matter how much you back up your data, digital copies can be unreliable. In only the twenty-some years we’ve had this storage method (in a wide sense) formats have changed, surges have killed hardware, files have been lost to software error, etc. As for analog materials, they tend to take up a lot of space, and this can obviously make their selection, storage and preservation a difficult process. Also as Shannon mentioned last week, many items in the Kellen Archives are large art objects or things not normally seen in a traditional archive. Is there a dilemma for preservation of these types of objects…for instance would you photograph or digitally scan a sculpture and then toss it to save on space or is preservation of the original paramount?

    Sorry that was long.

  • Allison says:

    What I’m most interested to hear about are practices in digital archiving that deal with material which is indigenous to digital space. When we visited the Municipal Archives, our guide expressed wariness at the prospect of digitizing physical artifacts such as photos, paper documents, newspapers, etc. However, he didn’t seem to be equally concerned with the fate of former mayoral files that are exclusively digital, such as e-mails, documents, etc. I don’t have a specific question related to this topic yet, but perhaps a discussion about archiving the physical vs. archiving the digital would inspire some!

  • Christo says:

    What are strategies for handling (preserving and making accessible) the most cost prohibitive digital content or material stored/used in proprietary systems and databases?

    What ideas inform a strategy for digitizing objects as opposed to documents and recordings? What typically happens with an objects after it has been digitized?

  • Nick says:

    I am actually interested in the economics of it. I may fairly ignorant in this regard, but I’d like to know what choices have to be made, what factors actually go into the decision to digitize, what is chosen TO digitize, etc. Why is it such an onerous economic enterprise to digitize? What’s the actual process? Or anything related to the actual process itself, the policies which affect it, etc.

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