Tuesday, 6 October 2009

iPres 2009: Kirschenbaum & Farr on digital materiality: access to the computers

This seems to be about the digital equivalent of literary personal papers; an urgency based on the recent deaths of authors like John Updike & others. Based on planning grant funding from NEH, resulting in a deliverable as a White Paper.

Digital objects in this case are artefacts, not just records; both the physical and the virtual require materiality. Some of this is regarding the computers as important parts of the creative context.

Recommendations: keep the hardware and storage media. You can tell things from hand-writing on diskette labels, etc.

Recommendation: Image disks (both pictorial images, but also forensic imaging), see Jeremy Leighton John.

Recommendation: computer forensics (see forthcoming CLIR/Mellon report on Computer Forensics in Cultural Heritage, expected to be available next fall).

Recommendation: document the original environment, eg 360 degree views.

Recommendations: value from interviewing the donors themselves.

Recommendation: since they are balancing lots of needs, they need to put careful thought for interface development.

Recommendation: Scholarly Communication Needs, have to have new tools and methodologies on citation (eg of a tracked change in a Word document), reproduction, copyright and IP issues. White paper available at http://www.neh.gov/ODH

There is a time window open now that may not stay open for long, for computers from the early 1908s!


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