Friday, February 16, 2007

Weekly readings - 16 February 2007

Digital Preservation in a National Context: Questions and Views of an Outsider. H.M. Gladney. D-Lib Magazine. January/February 2007.

“A solution is known in principle for every difficult technical problem of digital preservation.” Non-technical preservation challenges are greater than the technical challenges. Preservation is only a small part of “archiving”. Some information may disappear, including some that was supposed to be permanent. “Curators need to learn to live with not knowing for sure that they have succeeded.” A preservation solution would incorporate methods for:

  • Ensuring that each saved bit-string survives as long as somebody might want it;
  • Ensuring that readers can find and use any preserved object as its producers intended;
  • Providing evidence with which readers can judge information authenticity;
  • Integrating preservation support seamlessly with current information services; and
  • Hiding technical complexity from end users.

There needs to be a "trustworthy digital object" with metadata about the object and its relationship to other objects. Union catalogs of preserved objects could

Texas, Minnesota eye move to ODF. Elizabeth Montalbano. Computerworld. February 07, 2007.

Legislative action is being considered to mandate that government documents use an open, interoperable, XML-based file format. The Minnesota bill also specifies that it must be “fully published and available royalty-free; implemented by multiple vendors; and controlled by an open industry organization”. This would take affect in 2008. The Open Document Format is the intended standard. The Microsoft Open XML format, if approved by ISO, may also fit the description. MS has also created software called the ODF Translator, which translates between Open XML and ODF. Another take at: Latest OOX-ODF FUD-Spat: States Prepare to Ban Zip and PDF Files.

U.S. House Votes to Rescind NDIIPP Funding; Bill Now Under Consideration by Senate. Peter Murray. The Disruptive Library Technology Jester. February 11, 2007.

House of Representatives Resolution 20 rescinds a number of items for the Library of congress, especially “the unobligated balances available for the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program, $47,000,000.” This will remove the funding for this program for the rest of the year.

Arts and Humanities Get Small Increases. Lauren Smith. The Chronicle of Higher Education. February 16, 2007.

In the proposed 2008 fiscal year budget, the Electronic Records Archives and the Institute of Museum and Library Services would each get a 3% increase, but the National Archives and Records Administration would receive a 7% decrease.

64 DVDs on a disc: holographic storage to ship. Lucas Mearian. Computerworld. February 12, 2007.

InPhase Technologies will begin shipping the industry's first holographic disc drive in July. The holographic disc will hold 300GB of uncompressed data and 300GB of error correction and data redundancy. It is a write once disc intended for the archival market and has a 50 year expected lifespan. To a server, the disc will look like a drive with drag and drop capability. The holographic drive will cost $18,000 and the discs will cost $180 each. The company expects to have a rewritable disc in 2008, and a 1.6TB disc by 2010. It also plans to have a holographic jukebox in 2008 with a capacity of 675TB.

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