The Real Paul Jones

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JCDL: Is Digital Preservation an Oxymoron?

Paul, · Categories: Alumni and other friends, General, Information Commons, JCDL

Panel on (mostly) born-digital preservation. MIT prof at retirement turns in his laptop as his personal archives.
Average life of a document on a government web site is only 44 days. Brewster gets props for some goodness but links are often broken. Long-term access fails (says she, she being Liz Bishoff).

Robert Horton – Minnesota Historical Society – speaks first.
largest of state historical society. 300 employees. broad collections including tv, video, audio of legislature, etc etc. every 20th century medium difficult to preserve. think of silent films and varieties of audio. what is the “use value”? the more something is used the more likely it will be preserved in some form.
government records perspectives now. move to egovernment makes records management extremely difficult. procedures now used are no longer sensible or even doable.
minnesota does not try to control behavior. everyone shouldn’t have to be a records manager (says minnesota). starting with lower hanging fruit with specific results. have to have partners. UCSD’s supercenter has been their partner. Using grid technologies and GIS resources via SDsupercenter. 1.5 terabytes there.
Technology is not the problem, but organizational change is. How to fund and educate and to manage partnerships. How to move lessons learned at the edges of the organization to the center.
From eGov. must connect to enterprise architecture.
Must build capacity by showing immediate return — to get funds. Like the plant in Little Shop of Horrors — Feed Me!

Mark Halbert from Emery U – part of DLF’s Aquifer Project also NDIIPP funded etc. Preservation is not boring, says he. Now he explains his NDIIPP project which is about getting 3 terabytes of Southern (that’s Southern North America) resources as a Metaarchive.
distributed preservation strategy – LOCKSS (lots of copies keeps stuff safe)
dim archiving – not necessarily high accessible. in fact. hold costs by not letting people see it!
flexible organization model
formals content selection process – use the farris encyclopedia of southern culture as the framework
project time line – network underway now. initial archiving will be done in august.
metadata schema – standards based http://www.metaarchive.org
cooperative agreement designed to grow and change over time.
copyright ambiguities are the biggest challenges. LOCKSS is not friendly to copyright restrictions. lawyers see copies are well copies; archivists see copies as preservation and necessary.

Taylor Surface next up. He’s from OCLC. Director of Content Management something or other (says intro). He too is part of NDIIPP with UIUC. OCLC on digital content preservation. OCLC as a service provider for other organizations. Two services. Web archiving service to provide permanent access via links and/or archived materials as captured from the web for certain constituents. Digital masters supports digitization services and preserving “digital masters” for control and management. Used by about 10 state libraries.
Preservation planning. the OCLC policy, which you can read on the web (says he). Global digital format registry. (my my spelling is bad). Specificially informed risk accessment methodology (INFORM). Trusted digital repository registry for a national and/or international repositories to show that your work will be preserved.
Question time.
What is a “dim archive”? Martin answers. That Dark Archiving is impenatrable, but they don’t like to provide high availability to preserved materials. That means that you can get to a registry but you may not be providing access especially high availablity.
Gary Marchionini asks about software for preservation etc. Emery uses LOCKSS (open source etc). Bob says storage resource broker from SDSC and contentVM in minnesota. OCLC guy makes his pitch and says they currently use Oracle but that that is changing even now. and there will continue to be changing.
selection at emery. the most difficult issue is what formats will preserve what including the relationships in software and in databases. how to preserve intellectual content? files of ?? format will have rotted (say like wordstar?). migtation will be concerned with the selection.
formats for gov records. only about 1% of gov records is preserved. content is more important than structure for gov docs says Bob of minnesota.
More on structure and on formats.

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