RAC goes to Princeton!

Back in January, archivists from the Princeton University Manuscripts Division visited the Rockefeller Archive Center to discuss digital processing with members of the RAC Processing Team. To continue this conversation, a few staff members from the RAC went on a field trip to Princeton on June 8th. The group consisted of staff from various departments including members of the Processing, Collections Management, and Digital Teams. Continue reading

Using Zotero to Create Collaborative, Share-able, Export-able Bibliographies

Collect references once, export and share infinitely. That’s what tools like Endnote and Zotero come down to. In grad school I used Endnote to manage my references and then cite them as needed in Word documents (papers, my dissertation…). The software would automatically create bibliographies from cited material, in virtually any format imaginable (MLA and Chicago are just the beginning). But I never took it a step further to create an online, shareable library. It wasn’t until I began work on a Ford Foundation bibliography here at the Archive Center that I saw the benefits of an online reference-storing tool. Thanks to Hillel’s suggestion, I began to build one using Zotero, a free program .

Although I’m only about a month into using the software, I thought I’d outline the process for creating online bibliographies in Zotero, while adding some comments about RAC-specific uses and parts I still need to work out. I’m interested in discussing the “why” as much as the “how,” so please comment or feel free to chat about this with me, if you think it may be something you could use, too!

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Workshop Report: Digitizing A/V Collections – to Outsource or Not to Outsource?

On Wednesday, October 2nd, I attended the workshop “Digitizing Audiovisual Collections – to Outsource or Not to Outsource,” hosted by METRO and the Moving Image Archiving and Preservation program at NYU. Three speakers from different institutions (Chris Lacinak, Jonah Volk, and Julie May) came together to speak about their experiences in deciding whether to digitize audiovisual materials in-house, or work with an outside vendor. Each speaker laid out important criteria and considerations that will prove invaluable for anyone planning to start an audiovisual digitization project, as well as those that need guidance when working with vendors. In my opinion, the presentations naturally split into two categories: how to assess whether to outsource an audiovisual project, and the issues and concerns that you must take into account when working with a vendor. I have listed below some of the more salient takeaways from the workshop that any institution should keep in mind before undertaking any audiovisual digitization process.
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Archives 2013 New Orleans Session 604

SAA 2013 New Orleans
Session 604: Defining Levels of Preservation and Management for Electronic Records

This session addressed the initial steps or levels of preservation for electronic records management. It was held on Saturday August 17, 2013 at Archives 2013 New Orleans.
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National Digital Stewardship Alliance regional meeting

Last week on Friday, June 14th I attended the NDSA Regional Meeting  hosted by the Metropolitan New York Library Council  in New York City. This regional meeting of National Digital Stewardship Alliance members, NDIIPP project partners and other institutions interested in digital stewardship was held in an “unconference” format allowing for various short and long presentations on institution activities that are focused around digital stewardship and an open agenda session for topics of discussion to arise. Sibyl presented on the work the Digital Team has accomplished at the RAC creating and implementing a digital preservation program from ingest to access.

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Reading Round-up, or What Digital Archives Readings I Recommend This Week

Part of my job is being up-to-date on the latest happenings in technology and digital archiving. In my attempts to accomplish this (one can never be truly up-to-date; there’s always some new information out there) I tend to browse through many, many, many, publications, blog postings, presentations, videos, etc. each week. Some are gems, some reinforce knowledge I already had, some introduce new technologies, and some make you wonder why the author bothered. Thankfully that last category isn’t very numerous! Below are articles from the past couple weeks which I’d recommend. I’m listing these partly to spread the knowledge through the RAC, and partly to create a running bibliography of texts from which we can form discussions, or refer to when questions like “What did that project do?” or “Wasn’t there some article on a program that did that well?” come up. Please feel free to leave feedback or responses to the texts in the comments. Continue reading