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Category: digital preservation

The Edges of the GIS Electronic Record

I spent a good chunk of the end of my fall semester writing a paper ultimately titled “Digital Geospatial Records: Challenges of Selection and Appraisal”. I learned a lot – especially with the help of archivists out there on the cutting edge who are trying to find answers to these problems. I plan on a number of posts with various ideas from my paper.

To start off, I want to consider the topic of defining the electronic record in the context of GIS. One of the things I found most interesting in my research was the fact that defining exactly what a single electronic record consists of is perhaps one of the most challenging steps. ... 

SAA 2006 Session 103: “X” Marks the Spot: Archiving GIS Databases – Part III

With the famous Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy quote of “Don’t Panic!”, James Henderson of the Maine State Archives gave an overview of how they have approached archiving GIS data in his presentation “Managing GIS in the Digital Archives” (the third presentation of the ‘X Marks the Spot’ panel). His basic point is that there is no time to wait for the perfect alignment of resources and research – GIS data is being lost every day, so they had to do what they could as soon as possible to stop the loss. ... 

Thoughts on Archiving Web Sites

Shortly after my last post, a thread surfaced on the Archives Listserv asking the best way to crawl and record the top few layers of a website. This led to many posts suggesting all sorts of software geared toward this purpose. This post shares some of my thinking on the subject.

Adobe Acrobat can capture a website and convert it into a PDF. As pointed out in the thread above, that would loose the original source HTML – yet there are more issues than that alone. It would also loose any interaction other than links to other pages. It is not clear to me what would happen to a video or flash interface on a site being ‘captured’ by Acrobat. Quoting a lesson for Acrobat7 titled Working with the Web : “Acrobat can download HTML pages, JPEG, PNG, SWF, and GIF graphics (including the last frame of animated GIFs), text files, image maps and form fields. HTML pages can include tables, linkes, frames, background colors, text colors, and forms. Cascading Stylesheets are supported. HTML links are turned into Web links, and HTML forms are turned into PDF forms.” ...