Archive for March, 2008

Ball State University Libraries Move Ahead with Ambitious Digital Initiative Program

Posted in Digital Archives and Special Collections, Digital Libraries, Digital Media, Digital Presses, Digital Repositories, Digitization, Institutional Repositories on March 31st, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The Ball State Libraries have nurtured an ambitious digital initatives program that has established an institutional repository, a CONTENTdm system for managing digital assets, a Digital Media Repository with over 102,000 digital objects, a Digitization Center and Mobile Digitization Unit, an e-Archives for university records, and a virtual press (among other initiatives). Future goals are equally ambitious.

Read more about it at "Goals for Ball State University Libraries' Digital Initiative."

Tracking Deposit Growth: UK Repository Records Statistics

Posted in Digital Repositories, Institutional Repositories, Self-Archiving on March 31st, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Chris Keene, Technical Development Manager at the University of Sussex Library, has released UK Repository Records Statistics, which provides U.K. institutional repository record growth data from July 2006 onwards based on ROAR statistics. For example, the site has a table showing monthly record totals.

U.S. Copyright Exceptions and Limitations for Libraries: The Section 108 Study Group Report Released

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars on March 31st, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The Section 108 Study Group has released the The Section 108 Study Group Report.

Here's the group's charge from the "Executive Summary":

The purpose of the Section 108 Study Group is to conduct a reexamination of the exceptions and limitations applicable to libraries and archives under the Copyright Act, specifically in light of digital technologies. The group will study how section 108 of the Copyright Act may need to be amended to address the relevant issues and concerns of libraries and archives, as well as creators and other copyright holders. The group will provide findings and recommendations on how to revise the copyright law in order to ensure an appropriate balance among the interests of creators and other copyright holders, libraries and archives in a manner that best serves the national interest.

Here's an overview of the document from the "Executive Summary":

The Study Group’s recommendations, conclusions, and other outcomes of its discussions are described in this Report in three separate sections: "Recommendations for Legislative Change" addresses issues for which the Study Group agreed a legislative solution is appropriate and agreed on recommendations for legislative change. These recommendations often are subject to the resolution of related outstanding issues, discussed in detail in the body of the Report. "Conclusions on Other Issues" addresses issues on which the Study Group had substantive discussions, and agreed a legislative solution might be appropriate, but for which it has no specific recommendations on the major issues. "Additional Issues" addresses additional important issues that the Study Group discussed.

Lessig vs. Valenti Redux: Berkman Center for Internet & Society Releases Digital Video of Key Debate

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars on March 30th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society has released a digital video of the Lawrence Lessig and Jack Valenti debate about "The Future of Intellectual Property on the Internet" on October 1, 2000.

RLG Program Releases Copyright Investigation Summary Report

Posted in Copyright, Digitization, Mass Digitizaton, OCLC on March 30th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

OCLC's RLG Program has released the Copyright Investigation Summary Report.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

This report summarizes interviews conducted between August and September 2007 with staff RLG Partner institutions. Interviewees shared information about how and why institutions investigate and collect copyright evidence, both for mass digitization projects and for items in special collections.

Open Source Multimedia Document Creation and Reading Tool: Sophie Version 1.0 Released

Posted in Digital Media, E-Books, Open Source Software, Social Media/Web 2.0 on March 30th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The Institute for the Future of the Book has released version 1.0 of Sophie, an open source tool for creating and reading multimedia networked documents.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

Sophie is software for writing and reading rich media documents in a networked environment.

Sophie’s goal is to open up the world of multimedia authoring to a wide range of people and institutions and in so doing to redefine the notion of a book or "academic paper" to include both rich media and mechanisms for reader feedback and conversation in dynamic margins.

Read more about Sophie at "Sophie Project Gets $1 Million from Macarthur Foundation," the Sophie documentation, and the Sophie tutorials.

Elsevier’s John Tagler Chosen to Lead AAP Professional & Scholarly Publishing Division

Posted in People in the News, Publishing on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

John Tagler, Vice President, Customer Marketing, Academic and Government Libraries at Elsevier, has been named Vice President and Executive Director of the Association of American Publishers' Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division.

Read more about it at "John Tagler to Head AAP Professional & Scholarly Publishing Division."

Repository Planning Checklist and Guidance Released: Presents Planning Tool for Trusted Electronic Repositories (PLATTER)

Posted in Digital Curation & Digital Preservation, Digital Repositories, Institutional Repositories on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

DigitalPreservationEurope has released Repository Planning Checklist and Guidance.

Here's an excerpt from the "Executive Summary and Introduction to Platter":

The purpose of this document is to present a tool, the Planning Tool for Trusted Electronic Repositories (PLATTER) which provides a basis for a digital repository to plan the development of its goals, objectives and performance targets over the course of its lifetime in a manner which will contribute to the repository establishing trusted status amongst its stakeholders. PLATTER is not in itself an audit or certification tool but is rather designed to complement existing audit and certification tools by providing a framework which will allow new repositories to incorporate the goal of achieving trust into their planning from an early stage. A repository planned using PLATTER will find itself in a strong position when it subsequently comes to apply one of the existing auditing tools to confirm the adequacy of its procedures for maintaining the long term usability of and access to its material. . . .

The PLATTER process is centred around a group of Strategic Objective Plans (SOPs) through which a repository specifies its current objectives, targets, or key performance indicators in those areas which have been identified as central to the process of establishing trust. In the future, PLATTER can and should be used as the basis for an electronic tool in which repositories will be able to compare their targets with those adopted by other similar (suitably anonymised) repositories. The intention is that the SOPs should be living documents which evolve with the repository, and PLATTER therefore defines a planning cycle through which the SOPs can develop symbiotically with the repository organisation.

Podcast: Columbia's James Neal Provides Copyright Update

Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Digital Rights Management, E-Reserves, Open Access, P2P File Sharing on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

EDUCAUSE has released "EDUCAUSE Live! Podcast: Update on Key U.S. Copyright Developments," in which James G. Neal, Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian at Columbia University, discusses recent copyright issues.

Here's a description of the podcast:

Copyright continues to be a core interest of the higher education and academic library communities. This briefing focuses on eight critical legislative and legal arenas where the United States will be working on copyright: orphan works, digital fair use, broadcast flag, Section 1201 anti-circumvention rulemaking, electronic reserves, peer-to-peer file sharing, open access to government-funded research, and the report of the Section 108 Study Group on exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives. The work of the study group is highlighted, including its primary findings and recommendations. In addition, two important recent studies are described and their importance for libraries are cited. The advocacy and educational roles and responsibilities of librarians on copyright also is outlined.

DSpace Newsletter Published: DSpace 1.5, User Community Survey, and SWORD

Posted in Digital Repositories, DSpace, Institutional Repositories on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The DSpace Foundation has published the March 2008 issue of its NewSpace newsletter, which includes "DSpace 1.5 Features," "Summary of User Community Survey" "Stuart Lewis and Richard Jones on SWORD" and other articles.

OAI-ORE for Fedora: Oreprovider Released

Posted in Digital Repositories, Fedora, Institutional Repositories, OAI-ORE on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Oskar Grenholm of the National Library of Sweden has released oreprovider, an open-source Java application that "will let you disseminate digital objects stored in a Fedora repository as OAI-ORE Resource Maps."

In the announcement, he says:

The idea behind it all is that you have a Java web application (oreprovider.war) that, on the fly, will generate Resource Maps serialized as Atom feeds (using OAI4J) for objects in Fedora. All you have to do in Fedora is to add information in RELS-EXT what datastreams belongs to which Resource Map (exactly how to do this can be seen at the projects web page).

Peter Suber at Harvard on What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access

Posted in Open Access, Scholarly Communication on March 28th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

A digital video of open access advocate Peter Suber's presentation at the Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet and Society on "What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access?" is now available.

Stevan Harnad has commented on the talk in his "Peter Suber's Talk at Harvard's Berkman Center: 'What Can Universities Do to Promote Open Access?"' posting.

When Torrent Becomes a Trickle: Bell Canada Implements Traffic Shaping Policy for ISPs

Posted in Net Neutrality on March 26th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Canadian ISPs that rely on Bell Canada for data lines faced a new challenge starting on March 14th when Bell Canada began to implement a traffic shaping policy aimed at limiting P2P bandwidth utilization on their lines. The ISP's are up in arms about this policy, but Bell Canada says that:"Our agreements with wholesale ISP customers clearly include provisions regarding our rights to manage our networks appropriately to the benefit of all customers."

Read more about it at "Bell to Play Traffic Cop on Internet Bandwidth" and "Canadian ISPs Furious about Bell Canada's Traffic Throttling."

DSpace Version 1.5 Released

Posted in Digital Repositories, DSpace, Institutional Repositories, Open Access on March 26th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

Version 1.5 of DSpace, which is a major upgrade, has been released.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

The DSpace community is pleased to announce the release of DSpace 1.5! This is an important release of DSpace with many new features, including a completely new theme-able Manakin user interface, SWORD integration, many new configurable options, and scalability improvements. . . .

New Features:

  • Maven DSpace 1.5 introduces a new Maven-based build system. Maven is a software tool from Apache that allows developers to compile and distribute software projects. Maven also enables DSpace to be more modular by arranging the software into sub-components. In addition, it makes customizations easier by giving developers the tools to maintain customizations, and provides the ability to manage new features as DSpace continues its accelerating growth rate. . . .
  • Manakin Customize your repository look-and-feel with the new Manakin theme-able user interface. Manakin introduces a new modular framework, enabling an institution to customize their interface according to the specific needs of the particular repository, community, or collection. . . .
  • Light Network Interface Integrate DSpace with legacy or local systems that need to manage content in the repository through the new Light Network Interface. This interface provides a programmatic mechanism to manage content within the repository through a WebDAV or SOAP based protocol. . . .
  • SWORD Integrate with the new SWORD (Simple Web-service Offering Repository Deposit) protocol. Based upon the Atom Publishing Protocol, this interface allows for cross-repository deposit of new content. This protocol may enable future tools that will provide for 'one click' deposit. . . .
  • Browsing The browsing system has been completely re-implemented to provide improved scalability and configuration. The new browsing system enables administrators to easily create new browse indexes. . . .
  • Submissions The item submission system is now more configurable by managing the steps a user follows when submitting a new item to the repository. The new submission system allows for these steps to be rearranged, removed, and even allows for new steps to be added. . . .
  • Events Another under-the-hood improvement introduced in DSpace 1.5 is the event system, which improves scalability and modularity by introducing an event model to the architecture. This feature will allow future add-ons to automatically manage content in the repository based upon when an object has been added, modified, or removed from the system.

Recipients of the JISC/NEH Transatlantic Digitization Collaboration Grants Announced

Posted in Digital Humanities, Digitization, Grants on March 26th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The new Office of Digital Humanities of the National Endowment for the Humanities announced the first five recipients of the of the JISC/NEH Transatlantic Digitization Collaboration Grants yesterday.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The announcement was made by NEH Chairman Bruce Cole during an event at the Folger Shakespeare Library. . . . A total of five projects received over $600,000 in funding. . . .

Inaugurated last year as part of the Endowment’s Digital Humanities Initiative, the JISC/NEH Transatlantic Digitization Collaboration Grant program is supported by both the NEH and the Higher Education Funding Council for England acting through the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC). These grants provide combined funding of up to $240,000 for one year of development in the following areas: new digitization projects and pilot projects, the addition of important materials to existing digitization projects, or the development of infrastructure (either technical "middleware," tools, or knowledge-sharing) to support U.S.-England digitization work. Each project is sponsored by both an American and an English institution, whose activities will be funded by NEH and JISC respectively.

The formation of the Endowment’s Office of Digital Humanities (ODH) also was announced during the event. In 2006, the NEH launched the Digital Humanities Initiative, a program encouraging and supporting projects that utilize or study the impact of digital technology on research, education, preservation, and public programming in the humanities. With the creation of ODH, the initiative is being made permanent as an office within the NEH. ODH will continue the work of the initiative and will help to coordinate the Endowment’s efforts in the area of digital scholarship.

A complete list of the projects announced can be found below:

The Folger Shakespeare Library and the University of Oxford, with the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities at the University of Maryland and the Shakespeare Institute at the University of Birmingham, plan to create the Shakespeare Quartos Archive, a freely-accessible, high-resolution digital collection of the seventy-five quarto editions of William Shakespeare's plays. The project will also develop an interactive interface and toolset for the detailed study of the quartos, with full-functionality applied to all thirty-two copies of one play, Hamlet, held at participating institutions, including the British Library, the University of Edinburgh Library, the Huntington Library, and the National Library of Scotland. ($119,598)

The Internet Archive in the United States and the Oxford Internet Institute and Hanzo in the United Kingdom plan to develop procedures and tools to improve the effectiveness of humanities research on the Web. This research and development effort promises to yield superior methods for indexing and analyzing the textual parts of larger digital collections, more focused browsing ("crawling") of the Web, and unified access to data resources, i.e., the ability to search for information across multiple digital databases. ($106,395)

The Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University and the Centre for Computing in the Humanities at King's College, London, plan to launch Concordia, a set of tools and procedures to enable seamless textual searches and the dynamic mapping of a variety of humanities collections. The pilot project would concentrate on large holdings of papyrological and epigraphic texts from North Africa during the Greek and Roman periods. ($129,828)

A team of scholars from the Digital Archaeological Archive of Comparative Slavery at the Thomas Jefferson Foundation in Virginia, the University of Southampton's Nevis Heritage Project, and the International Slavery Museum in Liverpool is working together on the St. Kitts-Nevis Digital Archaeology Initiative. Together, they plan to develop an integrated digital archive of diverse archaeological and historical data related to the experiences of slaves on sugar plantations in the Caribbean by digitizing and delivering on the Web information from two 18th-century plantations. ($132,832)

The Perseus Digital Library at Tufts University and the Internet Centre at Imperial College London plan to develop Philogrid, a Web resource for scholars of Classical Antiquity. The project will generate a digital collection of fragmentary writings of Greek historians that is designed to interact with multiple source editions; a repository of philological data about the Greco-Roman world; and set of procedures that draws on the recipient’s experience in processing textual materials from Perseus but that can also be extended to other digital collections. ($119,992)

Supporting Digital Scholarly Editions: A Report on the Conference of January 14, 2008

Posted in Digital Humanities, E-Books, Publishing, Scholarly Books, University Presses on March 25th, 2008 by Charles W. Bailey, Jr.

The National Endowment for the Humanities and the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities have published Supporting Digital Scholarly Editions: A Report on the Conference of January 14, 2008, which was written by Ithaka staff.

Here'a an excerpt from the "Introduction":

On January 14, 2008, a group of editors, representatives from university presses, and other stakeholders met to discuss the future of scholarly editions and how they might best be supported in the digital age. . . . .

The objectives of the meeting were:

  • To identify services and tools that are critical for supporting digital documentary editions;
  • To assess the need for a service provider to facilitate the production of these editions; and
  • To articulate the key uncertainties involved in creating such a service provider, so that those can be further investigated.

This report documents the workshop, with the goal of providing a reference not only for participants, but also for others in the community who are concerned with the future of scholarly editions. It is divided into three sections that follow the course of the day itself:

  1. Developing a vision for the next generation scholarly edition
  2. How do we get there? Identifying needs and gaps
  3. Creating a service provider for scholarly editions

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