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"Tell the chef, the beer is on me."
By David Crossland in Bad Arolsen, Germany
Global Web of Memory
Reorganizing the database is one of the tasks of Susanne Urban, the ITS head of research, who joined the archive in 2009 after working in Yad Vashem, Israel's official memorial to the Holocaust. She says she expects the archive to reveal a plethora of "mosaic stones" to complete the picture of the genocide rather than alter it.
"Here you keep getting confronted with the global aspect of the Holocaust and survival, you see how it started in Germany, spread across Europe and with the documents about the survivors we see how a web of memory has spread across the whole world. Here you get an overview over everything. What makes it so harrowing is that you don't just get one aspect, you get them all. You sense this monolith that was built of pain and sorrow."
The work may be fascinating, but it can also be exhausting and saddening. Urban has only two research assistants on temporary contracts, which she says isn't enough.
In this book J. C. R. Licklider discussed how information could be stored and retrieved electronically. Although he had not read Vannevar Bush’s “As We May Think,” he realized that Bush’s ideas had been diffused through the computing community enough to have provided a base for his own ideas. His theoretical information network, which he called a “procognitive system” sounds remarkably similar to Tim Berners-Lee’s World Wide Web: “the concept of a ‘desk’ may have changed from passive to active: a desk may be primarily a display-and-control station in a telecommunication-telecomputation system-and its most vital part may be the cable (‘umbilical cord’) that connects it, via a wall socket, into the procognitive utility net”. This system could be used to connect the user to “everyday business, industrial, government, and professional information, and perhaps, also to news, entertainment, and education.” (source)
Based on a study sponsored by the Council on Library Resources, Inc., and conducted by Bolt, Beranek, and Newman, Inc., between November 1961 and November 1963.
Publisher MIT Press, 1965
ISBN 026212016X, 9780262120166
via Archive.org (where it is not available anymore)
// oAnth - original www-site: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_des_monuments_historiques_de_la_Corse-du-Sud
Europe's rich cultural heritage can be found in museums, libraries, galleries, cultural institutes, and archives throughout the continent. And thanks to digitization efforts and Europeana, much of this heritage can also be found online. Europeana is an Internet portal that provides public access to Europe's digital libraries - more than 15 million cultural objects including paintings, drawings, archival papers, books, letters, radio broadcasts, newsreels, films including some of the world's most famous cultural artifacts such as the drawings of Leonardo da Vinci and Isaac Newton's notes and book about the Laws of Motion. About 1500 institutions have contributed to Europeana, including the British Library in London, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdamn, and the Louvre in Paris.
Anyone can visit the Europeana website to search through the materials. And now, thanks to its newly released API, other applications and services may soon be on the way.
At the beginning of the month, Europeana held its first in what will be a series of hackathons, a way to showcase the potential of the API to data providers, partners and end-users. Europeana's new API is a search API that lets you search and display collections, metadata, and previews.
The Hackathon earlier this month was by invitation only, and currently European's API is only available to its partner developers. Those restrictions stem, in part, from the agreements that Europeana has had to make with institutions in order to access, search, and display their digitized collections.
Nonetheless, those who did participate in the Hackathon did build some great tools, including at least one that Product Developer David Haskiya says that Europeana will use itself.
One project was component built for the open-source content management system Joomla that includes both a keyword search and a map search. With the latter, you can look up objects in the the Europeana database within a region.
Another project built a wrapper for the Europeana API, helping geo-enable the queries. Then, by interfacing with OpenLayers, you can draw a box on a map, setting a boundary for your search, which will plot the results on a map. (You can view the demo here.)
And just so you don't restrict your searches solely to the most famous of Europe's cultural artifacts, one project will help with discovery: a random image explorer.
The debates surrounding the importance of and the obstacles to any sort of national digital library have certainly resurfaced following the recent Google Books decision. Who owns the rights to cultural artifacts? Who can and should be responsible for digitizing these artifacts? Who then stores them? Who can access them, and how?
These debates, of course, aren't new - in the U.S. or in Europe. In January, a European Union report cautioned its member states against turning over this efforts entirely to the private sector.
While these contentious legal issues are still being worked out, the Europeana API - and the hackathon - point to another important aspect of these sorts of projects. A digital library isn't simply about the preservation of important cultural material. It's about making sure that material is accessible. And with an active support for linked data and now with an API, it looks like Europeana is well on its way to moving these sorts of efforts forward.
Image credits: Ton ZijlstraDiscuss
“— Joho the Blog » Questions from and for the Digital Public Library of America workshop - 20110302 - David Weinberger
I came out of it invigorated and depressed at the same time. Invigorated: An amazing set of people, very significant national institutions ready to pitch in, an alignment on the value of access to the works of knowledge and culture. Depressed: The !@#$%-ing copyright laws are so draconian and, well, stupid, that it is hard to see how to take advantage of the new ways of connecting to ideas and to one another. As one well-known Internet archivist said, we know how to make works of the 19th and 21st centuries accessible, but the 20th century is pretty much lost: Anything created after 1923 will be in copyright about as long as there’s a Sun to read by, and the gigantic mass of works that are out of print, but the authors are dead or otherwise unreachable, is locked away as firmly as an employee restroom at a Disney theme park.
So, here are some of the issues we discussed yesterday that I found came home with me. Fortunately, most are not intractable, but all are difficult to resolve and, some, to implement:
Should the DPLA aggregate content or be a directory? Much of the discussion yesterday focused on the DPLA as an aggregation of e-works. Maybe. But maybe it should be more of a directory. That’s the approach taken by the European online library, Europeana. But being a directory is not as glamorous or useful. And it doesn’t use the combined heft of the participating institutions to drive more favorable licensing terms or legislative changes since it itself is not doing any licensing.
Source: AP (3-4-11)
Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address has inspired Americans for generations, but consider his jarring remarks in 1862 to a White House audience of free blacks, urging them to leave the U.S. and settle in Central America.
Lincoln went on to say that free blacks who envisioned a permanent life in the United States were being "selfish" and he promoted Central America as an ideal location "especially because of the similarity of climate with your native land — thus being suited to your physical condition."
As the nation celebrates the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's first inauguration Friday, a new book by a researcher at George Mason University in Fairfax makes the case that Lincoln was even more committed to colonizing blacks than previously known. The book, "Colonization After Emancipation," is based in part on newly uncovered documents that authors Philip Magness and Sebastian Page found at the British National Archives outside London and in the U.S. National Archives....
"Tell the chef, the beer is on me."
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