D-Lib: Reconstructing the Past Through Utah Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps: A Geospatial Approach to Library Resources
Of interest to many in the Hydra Community:
We are pleased to announce that registration is now open for the 10th International Conference on Open Repositories, to be held on June 8-11, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana, United States of America. Full registration details and a link to the registration form may be found at: http://www.or2015.net/registration
OR2015 is co-hosted by Indiana University Bloomington Libraries, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, and Virginia Tech Libraries.
OR2015 Registration and Fees:
An early registration fee of $450 USD will be available until May 8. After May 8, the registration fee will increase to $500 USD. This registration fee covers participation in general conference sessions, workshops, and interest group sessions, as well as the conference dinner on Wednesday, June 10 and poster reception on Tuesday, June 9. For a draft outline of the conference schedule, please see: http://www.or2015.net/program/schedule-at-a-glance
Participants may register online at: http://www.or2015.net/registration. If you have any questions about registering for OR2015, please contact the Conference Registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any other questions about the conference may be directed to the conference organizing committee by using the form at: http://www.or2015.net/contact-us
The OR2015 conference will take place at the Hyatt Regency Indianapolis hotel, conveniently located in the heart of downtown Indianapolis. Special room rates at the Hyatt starting at $159 USD per night have been negotiated for conference attendees and will be available for booking through May 16. More information on hotel reservations and travel is available at: http://www.or2015.net/conference-hotel-and-travel
Keynote and Featured Speakers:
Reflecting the significant milestone of the 10th Open Repositories conference and this year’s theme of “Looking Back, Moving Forward: Open Repositories at the Crossroads,” we are pleased to announce the conference’s two plenary speakers:
Kaitlin Thaney will be giving the opening keynote talk on the morning of Tuesday, June 9. Kaitlin is director of the Mozilla Science Lab, an open science initiative of the Mozilla Foundation focused on innovation, best practice and skills training for research. Prior to Mozilla, she served as the Manager of External Partnerships at Digital Science, a technology company that works to make research more efficient through better use of technology. Kaitlin also advises the UK government on infrastructure for data intensive science and business, serves as a Director for DataKind UK, and is the founding co-chair for the Strata Conference series in London on big data. Prior to Mozilla and Digitial Science, Kaitlin managed the science program at Creative Commons, worked with MIT and Microsoft, and wrote for the Boston Globe. You can learn more about the Science Lab at http://mozillascience.org and follow Kaitlin online at @kaythaney.
Anurag Acharya will be the featured speaker at the plenary session on the morning of Wednesday, June 10, presenting on “Indexing repositories: pitfalls and best practices.” Anurag is a Distinguished Engineer at Google and creator of Google Scholar, and he previously led the indexing group at Google. He has a Bachelors in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur and a PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon. Prior to joining Google, he was a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Maryland, College Park and an assistant professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
We look forward to seeing you at OR2015!
Jon Dunn, Julie Speer, and Sarah Shreeves
OR2015 Conference Organizing Committee
Holly Mercer, William Nixon, and Imma Subirats
OR2015 Program Co-Chairs
Is the COBOL programming language capable of processing MARC records?
A computer programmer in 2015 could be excused for thinking to herself, what kind of question is that!?! Surely it’s obvious that any programming language capable of receiving input can parse a simple, antique record format?
In 1968, it apparently wasn’t so obvious. I turned up an article by Henriette Avram and a colleague, MARC II and COBOL, that was evidently written in response to a review article by a Hillis Griffin where he stated
Users will require programmers skilled in languages other than FORTRAN or COBOL to take advantage of MARC records.
Avram responded to Griffin’s concern in the most direct way possible: by describing COBOL programs developed by the Library of Congress to process MARC records and generate printed catalogs. Her article even include source code, in case there were any remaining doubts!
I haven’t yet turned up any evidence that Henriette Avram and Grace Hopper ever met, but it was nice to find a close, albeit indirect connection between the two of them via COBOL.
Is the debate between Avram and Griffen in 1968 regarding COBOL and MARC anything more than a curiosity? I think it is — many of the discussions she participated in are reminiscent of debates that are taking place now. To fair to Griffin, I don’t know enough about the computing environment of the late sixties to be able to definitely say that his statement was patently ill-informed at the time — but given that by 1962 IBM had announced that they were standardizing on COBOL, it seems hardly surprising that Avram and her group would be writing MARC processing code in COBOL on an IBM/360 by 1968. To me, the concerns that Griffin raised seem on par with objections to Library Linked Data that assume that each library catalog request would necessarily mean firing off a dozen requests to RDF providers — objections that have rejoinders that are obvious to programmers, but perhaps not so obvious to others.
Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose?
Last updated March 15, 2015. Created by Peter Murray on March 15, 2015.
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Indiana University and Northwestern University are pleased to announce Avalon Media System 3.3. Release 3.3 adds the following capabilities:
- MARC Metadata Import
- Ingestion of pre-transcoded derivatives with multiple quality levels
- Script for recovering disk space taken up by temporary Matterhorn files
- UI Improvements and Bug fixes
Users of Avalon 3.2 can take advantage of these new features by Upgrading Avalon 3.2 to Avalon 3.3.
Last updated March 15, 2015. Created by Peter Murray on March 15, 2015.
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MediaSCORE (Media Selection: Condition, Obsolescence, and Risk Evaluation) enables a detailed analysis of degradation and obsolescence risk factors for most analog and physical digital audio and video formats.
MediaRIVERS (Media Research and Instructional Value Evaluation and Ranking System) guides a structured assessment of research and instructional value for media holdings.
Some additional key features of the software include:
- Browser-based web-application that works on any Windows and Mac operating systems using all popular browsers.
- Enables teams to enter and edit data simultaneously.
- Permissions based access and views across MediaSCORE and MediaRIVERS.
- Controlled vocabularies and field validation to help ensure consistent data entry.
- Provides auditing path to help with quality assurance and transparency.
The two applications are bundled together but may be used separately. They can be found along with a detailed user guide on GitHub at https://github.com/IUMDPI/MediaSCORE . Also available is a conceptual document that explores assessment of research and instructional value.
The software requires installation and configuration on a server, requiring the appropriate expertise. AVPreserve is also offering MediaSCORE/RIVERS as a hosted application on a monthly subscription basis.Package Type: Data Preservation and ManagementLicense: Apache 2.0 Package Links In DevelopmentOperating System: Browser/Cross-PlatformProgramming Language: PHPOpen Hub Link: https://www.openhub.net/p/MediaSCOREOpen Hub Stats Widget:
Last month I blogged for Safari about successfully changing fields, being fearless, and improving yourself through reading and learning. My blog post received a wonderful response, and I am proud to share that this month I begin my official new position as Safari’s Customer Success Manager. I am staying with my team and am super excited to make our product more useful to both our new and existing customers. I’ll be blogging intermittently about what I’m doing, learning, and making with Safari.
While I believe what I wrote in that post, I’ve felt a bit hypocritical because it’s come to my attention throughout this long, dark winter that
I waste a lot of time.
So much time! From time spent writing emotive letters that I never send to time reading the Wikitravel details of places I want to visit. I sleep late on weekends, occasionally drink too many glasses of wine on weeknights, often eat way more than an allotted portion while distractedly checking my phone during dinner, and spend hours looking at pairs of black pants on the Internet that I will never buy. (I love black pants, particularly loose, comfortable ones. Let this link be a hint to anyone who ever wants to buy me a present.) I believe strongly that there is a healthy balance between time-wasting and productivity, and I am afraid that this winter I crossed my own line and need to work on getting myself back to my center.
I’ve always been an over-achieving time waster; I’m the kind of person who knows all the details of Madonna’s Wikipedia page and still somehow finds the time to do all the things. I manage to consistently find the time for birthday parties, lazy afternoons, potlucks, puppet shows, and performing while always submitting applications, papers, and my taxes on time. I have always volunteered with my community, whether gardening or teaching or manning a booth, and I try to be there both in time and spirit for my friends. I am a master of very little and a generalist who can do a lot of things adequately, including playing music, speaking German and Spanish, and holding intelligent conversation on about a million topics. My lack of focus is what drew me to the interdisciplinarity of American Studies and later Library Science, but
because I am okay at a lot of things, I have often felt like I am not good at anything.
My lack of mastery augments an incredible social knowledge that makes me great at cocktail parties, but not so great at specialized skills, particularly those that I have tried and failed to learn repeatedly like drawing or programming computers.
Lounging around and wasting time makes me stressed, and yet I find myself in Wikipedia holes, on Buzzfeed lists, mindlessly thumbing through Instagram, and Googling ex-boyfriends more than I would like to admit. I have an addictive information-seeking brain, and the Internet has been both an asset and a curse for me as I find myself up late, watching the bar below my apartment close, absorbing both everything and nothing at once. (Pro-tip for other addictive minds: Never begin a television program with a seemingly unlimited number of episodes at 9PM on a week night. You will regret it.)
The Internet has made it easier to live vicariously through others, which is another double-edged sword that often makes life feel more complicated than it actually is. All my friends, professional contacts, and the celebrities who interest me seem to be living fulfilled lives, so I submit to the worst kind of voyeurism, one that’s tinged with envy and the feeling that this life could be mine if I were only more “_______.” This kind of time wasting makes me want to delete all my Internet history, take a shower, and maybe smash my phone against a wall. Even admitting that I do it in a public manner makes me feel slightly uncomfortable, but I think it’s important to recognize this is a human byproduct of the Internet age.
I’m not taking the capitalist tack that says all time has to be productive, self-improvement time, and one only has to read a Romantic novel to realize that people actually probably were not more productive in “olden days.” (I wonder how much time a Jane Austen heroine spent staring at the wall?) Instead of judging or feeling shame, (both feelings that society unfortunately encourages,) I want to practice weening myself off behaviors that don’t make me feel like my best self and hope that others feel inspired to make similar changes for their health and the health of their communities.
In order to kick off this process, I did what I do best, and what I do to make most of my decisions: I made a chart.
I titled the page:
“Be more productive. Overcome winter blues. Get moving.”
The chart’s four cardinal directions pointed to:
- Have to do
- Want to do
- Do less of
- Do more of
I brainstormed for about 25 minutes and then wrote a list of the immediate tasks I needed to do within the next week in order to make these “productivity hacks” reality (excuse the jargon.)
I wasn’t sure what was going to come out of the exercise, but when I looked at the page, I was surprised to see that most of my “negative” behaviors revolved around a few, distinct categories. In making the chart, I saw that “worrying about the opinion of others” came up 4 times, “relying too much on technology” came up 5 times, and “drinking less frequently” came up 2 times. (My 26 year old hangovers are much worse than my 21 year old hangovers!)
In contrast, doing creative work like playing music, dancing, and writing came up 7 times and giving back to my community came up 4 times on my “positive” behavior list. Being kinder to my environment, both in terms of resources and social awareness also came up frequently.
I am going to use the weeks leading up to my 27th birthday to take some steps towards doing my best work and realizing my unique talents through this exercise and others encouraged by productivity experts. I am also going to use this month to research improving productivity and share out my findings on this blog.
It’s time to focus on my creative and nurturing self and feel more alive in my body this spring. Winter has been hard on all of us Bostonians, but in adapting my behaviors to fit my goals, I am taking the first steps toward a daily practice to be my best self.