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Imagining Access to Born-Digital Collections

screenshot image of handbag and duffelbag describing the SIP and the AIP

One option is to let the collections users have it all!

In April 2016, I presented at the Radcliffe Workshop on Archival Technology.  Shared here are my presentation slides along with a brief description that notes what I said during the presentation.  You can read more about the Workshop in this blog post by Julia Kim.

This presentation was part of a three person panel, “Going Beyond the Click: A Moderated Conversation on the Future of Archival Description at the 2016 Radcliffe Institute Workshop on Technology and Archival Processing, held at the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University, April 4‐5 2016.

This panel aims to consider this transformation and the following questions. How does archival description change when there are no paper records? In digital record environments, what will define the provision of meaningful access? How will workflows change in the future?

The title, Stop Looking for the Quarter Under the Light, refers to a comic from 1942 wherein a person is looking for a lost item under a lamp because there’s more light there … even though they lost the item somewhere else. I used this a frame for thinking about how we shouldn’t continue to look at how we do processing for analog collections as a model for born‐digital collections. We might need to step away from those known processes and look for others to best do our work with born‐digital collections.

Stop Looking 4 Quarter … Presentation File

  • Description and Arrangement Competencies
  • Born-digital Archives Use Cases
  • Auto Extraction of Series & Dates
  • Automatic Agents & Locations
  • Web Archives Provenance
  • Productivity Accounts
  • Auto Summation
  • Auto Transcription
  • Aboutness and Ofness
  • Transparent Preservation Actions
  • Move away from the streetlight
  • Expand the search area
  • Look to additional Standards
  • Consider all the metadata
  • Employ Models
  • Put the Pieces Together
  • Let our users have it all