Seeking New Editors

Issue 40, 2018-05-04

Editorial: Beyond Posters: On Hospitality in Libtech

Ruth Kitchin Tillman

In this editorial, I will be using the word hospitality to mean the intentional welcome of others into a space which one currently occupies, possibly as a member of a dominant group. I do not wish to encourage the idea that one should cultivate or maintain a role of benevolent host in a way that forces others to remain forever guest or outsider, although there will always be newcomers. Hospitality may be a first step to ceding one’s position as host in a space. It may be expanding that space to become a place with many potential hosts, each respected for their varied contributions and skillsets. It may also be supporting those in a different space or a different role, such as those who use the technologies we build and support (both colleagues and patrons), and respecting them in that space.

What’s in a Name? On ‘Meaningfulness’ and Best Practices in Filenaming within the LAM Community

Drew Krewer and Mary Wahl

Cultural institutions such as libraries, archives and museums (LAM) face many challenges with managing digital collections, particularly when it comes to organizing the individual files that make up each collection. While tools such as metadata and collection management systems support identification and arrangement for digital files, administrative control depends significantly on the mere filenaming in use beneath the surface. Anecdotal evidence has shown that many LAM institutions have specialized filenaming schemes in place for their digital collections. This paper includes a literature review of filenaming practices in the LAM community, followed by a description and analysis of survey data regarding filenaming practices in the LAM community. The purpose of the survey was to learn about filenaming conventions in use within LAM organizations who have filenaming policies in place. The data suggests that: similarities and differences exist in filenaming approaches between museums/galleries, archives/special collections, and academic institutions; it is preferred that filenaming be simultaneously meaningful to both humans and computers; and conventions that affect sortability are deemed more important than those that affect readability. The data also indicate several subtopics related to filenaming that would benefit from further study.

Centralized Accessioning Support for Born Digital Archives

Alice Sara Prael

Archives often receive obsolete digital storage media alongside paper acquisitions: CDs and DVDs mixed in with folders of correspondence, Zip disks, and floppy disks set aside by the donor with the intention to review the content later. Archives must not only have the expertise to work with digital media, but also the hardware and software to capture the content without the risk of altering the files merely by viewing them. This article will describe how Yale University Libraries and Museums addressed accessioning of born-digital archival content on physical media through a centralized digital accessioning support service. Centralizing the hardware and expertise required for working with physical media made it possible to accession media more quickly and return the files to the originating archives for arrangement and description.

Wikidata: a platform for your library’s linked open data

Stacy Allison-Cassin and Dan Scott

Seized with the desire to improve the visibility of Canadian music in the world, a ragtag band of librarians led by Stacy Allison-Cassin set out to host Wikipedia edit-a-thons in the style of Art+Feminism, but with a focus on addressing Canadian music instead. Along the way, they recognized that Wikidata offered a low-barrier, high-result method of making that data not only visible but reusable as linked open data, and consequently incorporated Wikidata into their edit-a-thons. This is their story.

Redux: Tabulating Transactions with Raspberry Pi and Visualizing Results

Tim Ribaric

Often in the library tech world we are not given the opportunity to attempt a project again. Effort spent re-doing a previous project in a different way, in some sense, means wasting time that could be used to work on new initiatives. This article describes a redux of a project, a revenge story so to speak. In 2013 the Arduino based Tabulatron first entered production at Brock University Library. The device had its flaws, an attempt to rectify those flaws was manifested in the creation of the PiTab, the story of which is presented here.

FAIR Principles for Library, Archive and Museum Collections: A proposal for standards for reusable collections

Lukas Koster, Saskia Woutersen-Windhouwer

Many heritage institutions would like their collections to be open and reusable but fail to achieve that situation because of organizational, legal and technological barriers. A set of guidelines and best practices is proposed to facilitate the process of making heritage collections reusable. These guidelines are based on the FAIR Principles for scholarly output (FAIR data principles [2014]), taking into account a number of other recent initiatives for making data findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable. The resulting FAIR Principles for Heritage Library, Archive and Museum Collections focus on three levels: objects, metadata and metadata records. Clarifications and examples of these proposed principles are presented, as well as recommendations for the assessment of current situations and implementations of the principles.