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Category: software

Chapter 10: Open Source, Version Control and Software Sustainability by Ildikó Vancsa

Chapter 10 of Partners for Preservation is ‘Open Source, Version Control and Software Sustainability’ by Ildikó Vancsa. The third chapter of Part III:  Data and Programming, and the final of the book, this chapter shifts the lens on programming to talk about the elements of communication and coordination that are required to sustain open source software projects.

When the Pacific Telegraph Route (shown above) was finished in 1861, it connected the new state of California to the East Coast. It put the Pony Express out of business. The first week it was in operation, it cost a dollar a word. Almost 110 years later, in 1969, saw the first digital transmission over ARPANET (the precursor to the Internet). ... 

Chapter 7: Historical Building Information Model (BIM)+: Sharing, Preserving and Reusing Architectural Design Data by Dr. JuHyun Lee and Dr. Ning Gu

Chapter 7 of Partners for Preservation is ‘Historical Building Information Model (BIM)+: Sharing, Preserving and Reusing Architectural Design Data’ by Dr. JuHyun Lee and Dr. Ning Gu. The final chapter in Part II: The physical world: objects, art, and architecture, this chapter addresses the challenges of digital records created to represent physical structures. I picked the image above because I love the contrast between the type of house plans you could order from a catalog a century ago and the way design plans exist today. ... 

Chapter 5: The Internet of Things: the risks and impacts of ubiquitous computing by Éireann Leverett

Chapter 5 of Partners for Preservation is ‘The Internet of Things: the risks and impacts of ubiquitous computing’ by Éireann Leverett. This is one of the chapters that evolved a bit from my original idea – shifting from being primarily about proprietary hardware to focusing on the Internet of Things (IoT) and the cascade of social and technical fallout that needs to be considered. ... 

Chapter 4: Link Rot, Reference Rot and the Thorny Problems of Legal Citation by Ellie Margolis

The fourth chapter in Partners for Preservation is ‘Link Rot, Reference Rot and the Thorny Problems of Legal Citation’ by Ellie Margolis. Links that no longer work and pages that have been updated since they were referenced are an issue that everyone online has struggled with. In this chapter, Margolis gives us insight into why these challenges are particularly pernicious for those working in the legal sphere. ... 

The CODATA Mission: Preserving Scientific Data for the Future

The North Jetty near the Mouth of the Columbia River 05/1973This session was part of The Memory of the World in the Digital Age: Digitization and Preservation conference and aimed to describe the initiatives of the Data at Risk Task Group (DARTG), part of the Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA), a body of the International Council for Science.

The goal is to preserve scientific data that is in danger of loss because they are not in modern electronic formats, or have particularly short shelf-life. DARTG is seeking out sources of such data worldwide, knowing that many are irreplaceable for research into the long-term trends that occur in the natural world. ... 

Digitization Program Site Visit: University of Maryland

I recently had the opportunity to visit with staff of the University of Maryland, College Park’s Digital Collections digitization program along with a group of my colleagues from the World Bank. This is a report on that site visit. It is my hope that these details can help others planning digitization projects – much as it is informing our own internal planning.

Date of Visit: October 13, 2011 ... 

Rescuing 5.25″ Floppy Disks from Oblivion

This post is a careful log of how I rescued data trapped on 5 1/4" floppy disks, some dating back to 1984 (including those pictured here). While I have tried to make this detailed enough to help anyone who needs to try this, you will likely have more success if you are comfortable installing and configuring hardware and software.

I will break this down into a number of phases:

  • Phase 1: Hardware
  • Phase 2: Pull the data off the disk
  • Phase 3: Extract the files from the disk image
  • Phase 4: Migrate or Emulate

ArchivesZ Needs You!

I got a kind email today asking “Whither ArchivesZ?”. My reply was: “it is sleeping” (projects do need their rest) and “I just started a new job” (I am now a Metadata and Taxonomy Consultant at The World Bank) and “I need to find enthusiastic people to help me”. That final point brings me to this post.

I find myself in the odd position of having finished my Master’s Degree and not wanting to sign on for the long haul of a PhD. So I have a big project that was born in academia, initially as a joint class project and more recently as independent research with a grant-funded programmer, but I am no longer in academia. ...