Automating ArchivesSpace exports, or Better Living Through APIs

In preparation for upcoming changes to the display of digital objects in DIMES, I’ve been pursuing some enhancements to data export from ArchivesSpace. This began with a plugin to improve METS exports, including embedded MODS records, but then grew into a more comprehensive project to automate the export of updated resource records, version that data, and then push it to DIMES.

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Reconciling Large Corporate Name Datasets

Over the weekend, we finished up a year-long project to import description for almost every single grant record the Ford Foundation ever gave. This is the same project that I wrote a post about last October. To refresh your memory, we started with 54,644 grant files described in an Excel spreadsheet, and we wanted to transform much of that data into EAD, and then import it into ArchivesSpace. Normally this project wouldn’t require an entire year, but we realized over the course of the project that we did not have efficient ways to reconcile our structured data against Library of Congress vocabularies. The post in October laid out our methods for reconciling subjects against LoC data; this post will detail the methods we took to reconcile corporate names against the LCNAF. Continue reading

Born-Digital Workflows CURATEcamp Report

It’s been a busy couple of weeks for conferences! On Friday, Bonnie and I attended a Born-Digital Workflows CURATEcamp, held at the Brooklyn Historical Society. We gave a brief presentation on our workflows for arranging and descriping born-digital materials, and also learned a lot from other attendees. Continue reading

From AT to AS Part 3: Training and Customization

CUSTOMIZING THE APPLICATION – 22 hours in 4 months

While we were mostly happy with the base ArchivesSpace application, we did want to make a few changes to the display and functionality in order to make it more user-friendly. I started out by referencing the Customizing and Theming ArchivesSpace documentation as well as the developer screencasts. Continue reading

From AT to ArchivesSpace Part 2: Migrations and Error Reporting

Migration Testing, Data Quality Checks, and Troubleshooting Errors – 295 hours in 8 months

After finishing the initial data cleanup, it was time to start testing our migration; the only way to identify major issues was to do a dry run. To set up for our initial testing, I took a MySQL dump of our AT database, loaded it up into an empty AT instance, and then installed the AT Migration Plugin. To install the AT Migration Plugin, just place the in your base AT plugins folder, either on a server or on your local machine.

Our first migration test did not go smoothly. Continue reading

Unveiling ArchivesSpace

As you should all know by now, we will be transitioning from ATReference to ArchivesSpace in a couple of months. It has been a lengthy project, but we’re quickly approaching its final stages. As such, I wanted to give everyone a quick rundown of the final timeline and the work that we are doing to get us there.

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SAA Session Review: ArchivesSpace

A Next-Generation Archives Management System [SAA session 601]

This presentation mainly focused on the history of the ArchivesSpace project during its time as a Melon-funded venture. I’ve attached the presentation slides if you’re interested in timelines and other details. Suffice it to say, the ArchivesSpace team has accomplished their goal of producing a solid 1.0 release, and the software is now moving into a community-funded phase. The RAC has joined as an ArchivesSpace charter member and will be able to partake in the benefits that membership affords, including access to documentation, a voice in development priorities, and early access to migration tools. Continue reading