Notre Dame launches platform for online access to library, museum holdings | News | Notre Dame News | University of Notre Dame

“The Hesburgh Libraries and the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame have launched Marble (Museum, Archives, Rare Books and Libraries Exploration) — an online teaching and research platform designed to make distinctive cultural heritage collections from across the University accessible through a single portal.

The development of Marble was made possible, in part, by a three-and-one-half-year grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to create an open-access, unified software solution that would enable universities to access museum and library holdings through a single online platform….

The code for the Marble project was developed and will be maintained by the Hesburgh Libraries development team. The platform code is openly licensed under an Apache 2.0 license and available on GitHub. Project documentation, technical diagrams, collaborative processes and best practices are published on the Open Science Framework….”

George III’s maps and views: 32,000 images released on Flickr Commons – Maps and views blog

“In October 2020 we released 17,000 images of maps and views from George III’s Topographical Collection on the images-sharing site Flickr Commons, which seems to have kept you busy. 

Well, from today, you can find an additional 32,000 images, comprising George III’s collection of atlases and albums of views, plans, diagrams, reports and surveys, produced between 1550 and 1820. These have been uploaded to Flickr with a Public Domain attribution for you to search, browse, download, reuse, study and enjoy….”

NEH Implementation Grant to Duke Libraries Will Increase Access to African American Oral Histories – The Devil’s Tale

“This summer Duke University Libraries will launch a project to provide expanded digital access to the Behind the Veil: Documenting African-American Life in the Jim Crow South oral history collection, housed in the  David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Libraries and curated by the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History & Culture.  The project, titled “Documenting African American Life in the Jim Crow South: Digital Access to the Behind the Veil Project Archive,” received a $350,000 Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Implementation grant supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)….”

Wetenschappelijk tijdschrift Rijksmuseum nu voor iedereen online beschikbaar – Persberichten – Pers – Rijksmuseum

From Google’s English:  “In addition to a printed version, The Rijksmuseum Bulletin now also appears as a free digital magazine in Open Access. The peer-reviewed scientific journal of the Rijksmuseum, in which historical and art-historical research about the collection is presented, will thus be freely available online to everyone. All editions of the magazine from 2012 are currently online. Later this year, the archive will be expanded to include the first issue in 1953….”

The value of digital archive film history: willingness to pay for film online heritage archival access | SpringerLink

Abstract:  With the passage of time, celluloid film degrades and valuable film history is lost, resulting in loss of cultural history which contributes to the shared sense of community, identify, and place at a local and national level. Despite the growth in digitised services for accessing cultural resources, to date no economic valuation has been performed on digital local history resources which are accessible online. Despite the recent emergence of online portals for digital cultural services in many countries (such as virtual tours of art galleries and digitisation of cultural archives) a shift which has accelerated in response to the Covid-19 epidemic, there remains a major literature gap around the value of digital culture. Failure to account for the value of digital archives risks sub-optimal allocation of resources to accessing and preserving these aspects of local cultural history. In response, we performed the first contingent valuation study to estimate willingness to pay for a free online film archive portal containing historical film footage for localities throughout the United Kingdom. Users were willing to pay an average hypothetical subscription for digital archive film services of £38.52/annum. Non-users in the general population were asked their willingness to pay a hypothetical annual donation to maintain free public access (£4.68/annum on average). The results suggest that positive social value is gained from online access to digital archive film, and from knowing that the cultural heritage continues to be digitally accessible by the public for current and future generations. We outline how this evidence aligns with a theoretical framework of use and non-use value for digital goods and services extending beyond those who currently use the portal, to those introduced to it, and those in the general public who have never directly experienced the online archive service. We also report what we believe is the first application of Subjective Wellbeing analysis to engagement with a digital cultural service. The advantage of applying methods from economics to value cultural activities in monetary terms is that it makes emerging modes of digital cultural goods and services commensurable with other costs and benefits as applied to cultural policy and investment decisions, putting it on a level footing with physical cultural assets.

 

iDigBio receives $20 million from NSF to sustain U.S. museum digitization efforts – Florida Museum Science

“The National Science Foundation has awarded iDigBio nearly $20 million to continue its mission of digitizing natural history collections nationwide, making them available online to researchers, educators and community scientists around the world.

For the past decade, iDigBio, a collaborative program based at the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida, has led the push to digitize the estimated 1 billion biological specimens held in U.S. museums. These online records of animals, plants and other organisms serve as a searchable archive of life and help researchers identify species in danger of extinction, track the spread of invaders, study how climate change is reshaping ecosystems and possibly predict the next pandemic.

Thanks to iDigBio’s coordination, training and community-building efforts, about 40% of specimens in U.S. collections are now represented in the program’s portal, comprising one of the largest virtual collections of Earth’s biodiversity and contributing to more than 2,000 studies so far….”

Digital Library of the Middle East Implements Major Upgrades • CLIR

“The Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), Qatar National Library, and Stanford University Libraries today announced several major improvements to the Digital Library of the Middle East (DLME).

The public, open DLME platform, released in July 2020, aggregates digital records of published materials, documents, maps, artifacts, audiovisual recordings, and more from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Viewers can access nearly 134,000 digital records of materials spanning more than 12 millennia held in museums, libraries, and archives worldwide. The site is fully navigable in Arabic and English….”

The Stuart Cary Welch Islamic and South Asian Photograph Collection | Harvard Library

“The Fine Arts Library holds the noted curator’s research slides, documenting four decades of unparalleled access to public and private art collections from around the world….

The Fine Arts Library is currently in the process of digitizing, color-correcting, and cataloging this important collection, which is made available open access as it is completed. View the images currently cataloged. …”

Renowned Digital Humanities Researchers Begin Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud | Library of Congress

“Three renowned researchers in digital humanities and computer science are joining forces with the Library of Congress on three inaugural Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud projects, exploring how biblical quotations, photographic styles and “fuzzy searches” reveal more about the collections in the world’s largest Library than first meets the eye.

Supported by a $1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded in 2019, the initiative combines cutting edge technology with the Library’s vast collections to support digital humanities research at scale. These three outside researchers will collaborate with subject matter experts and technology specialists at the Library of Congress to experiment in pursuit of answers that can only be achieved with collections and data at scale. These collaborations will enable research on questions previously difficult to address due to technical and data constraints. Expanding the skills and knowledge necessary for this work will enable the Library to support emerging methods in cloud-based computing research such as machine learning, computer vision, interactive data visualization, and other areas of digital humanities and computer science research. As a result, the Library and other cultural heritage institutions may build upon or adapt these approaches for their own use in improving access to text and image collections….”

Digital Library of Georgia Reaches Milestone of 2 Million Pages of Historic Georgia Newspaper Digitized Online | UGA Libraries

“The Digital Library of Georgia has made its 2 millionth digitized and full-text- searchable historic newspaper page available freely online. The title page of the May 27, 1976 issue of the Augusta News-Review will become the 2

millionth page digitized by the Digital Library of Georgia. The newspaper, published by Mallory Millender from 1971 to 1985, identified itself as a “community paper with a predominantly Black readership” that presented the issues of the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA) from a “Black perspective.” The digitization of the title was made possible by Georgia Public Library Service. …”

Google v. Oracle: Takeaways for Software Preservation, Cultural Heritage, and Fair Use Generally (2021 Reflection) | Software Preservation Network (SPN)

“On April 5, 2021, the Supreme Court issued its opinion on the long-running litigation between Oracle and Google over the reuse of aspects of Oracle’s Java programming framework in Google’s Android mobile operating system. The majority opinion, written by Justice Breyer and joined by five of his fellow justices (Chief Justice Roberts, and Justices Kagan, Sotomayor, Kavanaugh, and Gorsuch), sided with Google, saying its use was lawful because it was protected by fair use. Justice Thomas wrote a dissent, joined only by Justice Alito, arguing that Google’s use was infringing. The newest Justice, Amy Coney Barrett, did not participate in the arguments or decision of the case as it predated her joining the Court. More background on the case can be found in my earlier blog post for SPN summarizing the oral arguments.

Justice Breyer’s opinion is already a landmark for the reasons I laid out there: it is the first Supreme Court opinion to address fair use in nearly thirty years—the last one was Campbell v. Acuff-Rose in 1994. And it is the first Supreme Court opinion to address copyright’s protection for software—ever. And now we know that the opinion will be a milestone for another reason: it is a confident, erudite treatment of the issue by a Justice who has been thinking about copyright and software for more than half a century. As a law professor, Stephen Breyer earned tenure at Harvard based on his 1970 article, “The Uneasy Case for Copyright: A Study of Copyright in Books, Photocopies, and Computer Programs.” The opinion is thus a very happy coincidence: a thorny and consequential issue confronted by a subtle and experienced thinker. The results are quite encouraging for software preservation and for cultural heritage institutions and fair users generally….”

Europeana Digital Spring Programme: Not in Public Ownership, but Available for Public Use | Europeana Pro

“In this session, Bernadine Brocker Wieder holds a roundtable discussion on how to keep digital public access to works removed from museum collections. Bernadine proposes two methods for discussion on how digital technology can ensure that works are publicly available even after the gavel comes down at an auction. …”

Making two million images freely available online – Living Knowledge blog

“Ten years ago the British Library and the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development started exploring possible areas of collaboration. For some time the British Library had been working on an international engagement strategy to make our collections more accessible in partnership with other organisations.

Fast forward to 2021, and our partnership with the Qatar Foundation and Qatar National Library has gone from strength to strength, this week hitting the major milestone of making our two millionth image freely available online via the Qatar Digital Library.

Under the British Library’s Living Knowledge strategy we have sought new partnerships and collaborations, particularly when it comes to digitisation and digital scholarship.  Our aim is to open up the collections to a global audience and the British Library Qatar Foundation Partnership is a prime example of this endeavour….”

 

‘A long journey’: Richly detailed, fully searchable Chinese treasures will be made available for free online | UC Berkeley Library News

“Today, the UC Berkeley Library announces a monumental collaboration with Sichuan University, with funding from the Alibaba Foundation. The project aims to digitize most of the pre-1912 Chinese language materials from EAL’s [East Asian Library’s] collections, bringing them to life in vivid detail for researchers today and for generations to come.

While chunks of EAL’s collections have been digitized and made available online over the years, the project with Sichuan University is the first of its kind because of its grand scope. Berkeley’s collection of Chinese volumes is one of the largest among research libraries in North America. Nearly 10,000 titles are from before 1912, and are in line to be digitized….”