DCC

Digital Curation Conference: Remember the Call for Papers

There is less than 3 weeks to go before the Call for Papers for the 3rd International Digital Curation Conference closes, on 15 August 2005. I do want to encourage researchers to submit research papers on digital curation to this conference. We had a good set of papers last year in Glasgow, and we are hoping for an even stronger field this year, when the Conference will be held in Washington DC.

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Question on approaches to curating textual material

Dave Thompson, Digital Curator at the Wellcome Library asked a question on the Digital Preservation list (which is not well set up for discussion just now). I've replied, but we agreed I would adapt my reply for the blog for any further discussion that might emerge."I'm looking for arguments for and against when, and if, digital material should be normalised. I'm thinking about the long term management of textual material in proprietary formats such as MS Word. I see three basic approaches on which I'm seeking the lists comments and thoughts.

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Subject "versus" institutional repositories

There's a concept in maths called "closed but unbounded". I'm not sure it's exactly to the point (I hope that's a pun), but "subjects" seem a bit like that. You can be pretty sure about most of the stuff that's not in a subject (or "domain"), and most of the stuff that is in it, but you can be very puzzled about some of the edges, and can find yourself in some extremely surprising discussions at times about parts of subjects that challenge most of the ideas you had. So subjects turn out to be very un-bounded.

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Open Data Licensing: is your data safe?

Over on the Nodalities blog, Rob Styles wrote about some of the aspects of open data licensing, and the tricky questions of copyright versus database right. OK, yawn. Let me put that another way… over on the Nodalities blog, Rob Styles writes about whether you can make your data openly accessible on the web without getting totally ripped off in the process. A bit less of a yawn?One key quote:

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A little more on very long term time series

I wrote earlier about a visit to Rothamsted Research, to talk with them about some of their very long term time series of agricultural research data (since 1843... digitised since 1991). Asking around, the prevailing wisdom seems to be to break the time series data when the nature of the data changes. Keep those time series, un-touched. Then build your overall time-series by a set of transformations on the original datasets, where the actual transformations are well-documented.

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The National Archives and Microsoft join forces...

On 4 July, The National Archives and Microsoft announced a Memorandum of Understanding "ensuring preservation of the nation´s digital records from the past, present and into the future".

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Open Data... Open Season?

Peter Murray Rust is an enthusiastic advocate of Open Data (the discussion runs right through his blog, this link is just to one of his articles that is close to the subject). I understand him to want to make science data openly accessible for scientific access and re-use. It sounds a pretty good thing! Are there significant downsides?

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Very long term data

Rothamsted Research is an agricultural research organisation based near Harpenden in England. There are many interesting features of this organisation (only a few of which I know), including its “classical experiments". One of these, started in 1843, must surely be one of the longest-running experiments with resulting time-series data anywhere.

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Open Access everyone? Or not?

I occasionally look at the OpenDOAR service, which list information about repositories, and check out those which claim to include data (the term they use is datasets, although it is possible that “other” might also be applicable!).

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UKDA 40th Birthday: back to basics?

There are not many digital data management organisations that can claim 40 years of continuous service. This week the UK Data Archive (UKDA, which holds mainly social science datasets) celebrates 40 years since its founding in 1967, with a party yesterday in the House of Commons followed by a small workshop in the UKDA’s fancy new quarters at the University of Essex.

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