Finishing up

December 10, 2008 at 2:22 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

The postcard collection is live through Drake, although it won’t be up through the library’s web site for a bit longer as they make the switch from wiki to web page for the local history project.  You can browse the collection for now here. The last piece I did was write a narrative to be placed on the page that directs patrons to the collection. The text describes the intentions behind the project and provdes additional information for users.

It was an excellent and productive semester and I learned may valuable project management strategies thanks to the expertise of Deb and Joe. I also enjoyed the opportunity to provide some Windows Movie Maker training last week for the staff. It is always wonderful to be able to share things I have learned in my classes with others.

Looking forward to my fellowship presentation on Friday and graduation. Thank you for reading my blog about my time as an IMLS Fellow.

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Local History Webpage

November 17, 2008 at 11:08 am (IMLS Fellowship)

We still have to get the local history webpage up and going before the collection will be available for public consumption.  In the meantime, I am working on developing a MovieMaker training for the staff and Thursday Joe and I have a meeting to discuss the next steps for the oral history project.  Things are a bit light as last week I was in Los Angeles at my conference and then I had poster session which caused me to miss out on hours.

I am back in the thick of it again and will keep you updated.

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Finishing up and possible grant application

November 2, 2008 at 6:14 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

This week I will be going over to Drake to upload the metadata and images from the postcard collection on to CONTENTdm.  This past week I worked on the narrative section for the collection that describes the scope and sequence of the project, as well as defines the practices used to populate the metadata fields.  I have a few transcriptions left, including the most difficult ones in Swedish, and then I should be set.  This is great timing as it looks that DMPL may be pursuing a grant opportunity that will help fund the second part of my project, the oral histories.  For the time being we will be moving forward with the interviews that have already been transcribed.  Joe did a test migration and it seems to be appropriate in quality for the time being.  We will be taking several over to the a/v company to be sampled in the next week or two.  Because I am going to L.A. to present at a conference and then have poster session at the end of the week, next week is not looking quite as productive as I would like, but I should be back on track the week of the 17th.

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Catching Up

October 20, 2008 at 10:58 am (IMLS Fellowship)

In the past two weeks the following breakthroughs/developments have occurred:

Drake University has agreed to host the postcard collection until the State of Iowa Library takes over Iowa Heritage Digital Collections.

DMPL is moving forward on the Local History website which will feature the postcard collection as its first fully formed digital collection.  The meeting we had last week highlighted several areas where the current wiki will be used for content to speed up the transition to a more accessible format.

All of the postcards have been scanned and saved into both Master and Access files.

Approximately half of the metadatahas been recorded with the second half to follow in the next week and a half.

We are on target to have the collection ready for CONTENTdm by November 1st.

The narrative section for the collection, including rationale and best practices, is in process.

Joe and I had a successful presentation of the digital side of special collections during the all staff in-service on the 13th. 

As soon as the postcards wrap up we will move on to the oral histories project.

In other news, the presentation for Henry Stewart is progressing well.  We have been having meetings about once a week and have met with both the head of the Creative Library (CL) and the head of the Video Solutions department in order to gather appropriate background on the development of the video portion of the CL.  Jennifer is concentrating on demos and current practices with importing, whereas I am focusing on the cataloging issues with keywording vs. subject headings/content categories.

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The one you’ve been waiting for…

September 27, 2008 at 11:32 am (IMLS Fellowship)

This week I worked on two things: revisions to the project plan based on mentor input and selection of the postcards.  I have selected 63 postcards to be scanned front and back as well as a souvenir folder specialty postcard that contains text and 18 additional images.  This gives us 144 total images and 64 individual records.  Here is an image of my favorite postcard in the collection:

My Favorite

My Favorite

 

I am just so glad it was in the public domain.

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Progress

September 22, 2008 at 9:32 am (IMLS Fellowship)

I had a great meeting with Joe and the IT team concerning the role of CONTENTdm in the project and the Drake University/University of Iowa/State of Iowa Library relationship as it relates to DMPL.  There was talk of Drupal vs. purchasing a CMS, but that conversation has been put on hold while calls are being made.  I was given the name of a sound technician at Triad AV and through our conversation it looks as though the oral histories project will get going in a few weeks with an evaluation of the sound quality by this professional AV company. 

 

My current (25 page) iteration of the project plan for the postcard collection is being reviewed by Deb and Joe.  We are moving forward on the postcard selection and digitization this week.  I hope to have a small sample collection ready to go within a few weeks.  This includes any necessary research to complete the metadata.    

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Week Two

September 14, 2008 at 10:45 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

This week I met with Lorna Truck, retired DMPL Director and all around guru, my mentors, and other great people from the marketing department to discuss the overall plan for the projects. We talked about connecting with the Iowa Heritage Digital Collections as a way to broaden the scope and impact of the project.  What are our goals and how will they align with the IDHC?  In their words the IHDC is “an online repository of Iowa history and culture created by bringing together in digital form documents, images, maps, finding aids, interpretive and educational materials, and other media from collections held by a wide range of organizations throughout Iowa.”  How can we be sure that our collection is appropriate and will enrich the collection?

The State of Iowa Library will soon take over the project and they will be making available multiple CONTENT dm licenses for libraries around the state to use.  Some of the deadlines for this were altered due to the flooding and it is not currently clear exactly when CONTENT dm will be available.  From this meeting, we decided that not only should contact with IDHC move forward, but that I should work on a project plan utilizing the framework Joe prescribed.  Also, I would make contact with IDHC.  Nancy Kraft is the Committee Chair for IDHC and happened to be attending the Consortium of Iowa Archivists meeting that I was also going to on Friday.  I emailed her and we decided to have a chat during the luncheon.  She gave me some pointers for moving forward with the project and recommended using the Colorado Digitization Project’s standards.

This next week I will be working on the project plan keeping all of this in mind.

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Fall 2008 in Des Moines, Iowa

September 7, 2008 at 6:08 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

This semester I will be working with several collections at the Des Moines Public Library’s Central. Here is the tentative workflow plan for the initial planning steps and the first two collections:

Workflow

Revisions as necessary to the DMPL Digitization Guidelines
Schedule for projects

Postcards:

• Develop a project plan following the DMPL Digitization Guidelines
• Determine copyright permissions involved with digitizing and making available portions of the vintage postcard collection*
• Select a theme or other criteria for inclusion in the sample collection
• Scan postcards (front and possibly back) and save as JPEGs utilizing prescribed file naming conventions as developed in the DMPL Digitization Guidelines
• Determine metadata fields
• Update/create an Excel spreadsheet to chart out the metadata
• Populate the metadata fields, research where necessary
• Set up a Drupal site on the server using the CSS (or similar) from the main DMPL site
• Populate the Drupal pages with the following:
o Narrative section on the sample collection and the collection as a whole
o Images with metadata for _#_ postcards
o Links to significant external information (Google maps, current day photos of buildings, Drake Historic Building Project, etc.)
• Site goes live

*Initial research shows that postcards are in the public domain before 1923 as long as you have the original. So the sample will need to be taken from this year or before.  This is subject to confirmation.

Oral Histories Project:

• Develop a project plan following the DMPL Digitization Guidelines
• Determine copyright permissions involved with digitizing and making available portions of the Oral Histories Project
• Select a theme or other criteria for inclusion in the sample collection
• Migrate interviews from tapes to WAV and MP3 files and save utilizing prescribed file naming conventions as developed in the DMPL Digitization Guidelines
• Determine metadata fields
• Update/create an Excel spreadsheet to chart out the metadata
• Populate the metadata fields, research where necessary
• Set up a Drupal site on the server using the CSS (or similar) from the main DMPL site
• Populate the Drupal pages with the following:
o Narrative section on the sample collection and the collection as a whole
o Biographic information about the interviewee
o One full length interview with both PDFs of the transcript and a searchable text file (to be included in the metadata and not viewed by the user if possible-otherwise this is to be added when CONTENTdm becomes available)
o Links to significant external information (Google maps, news items or additional biographic information about the interviewee, etc.)
• Site goes live

On Monday morning I have a meeting with one of the former directors of the library who was the driving force behind the digitization efforts of the past. As I have spent this last week becoming familiar with the collections and meeting with several key players, I am excited for the upcoming meeting as I feel it will start everyone off on strong footing for the future of the project.

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Collection/Video Files/Cataloging Schema

May 1, 2008 at 3:24 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

As the semester wraps up I have a few things to finish up.  One, I have been curating a Des Moines Artists Collection for the Daily Palette.  So far I have a clip from the film A Little Salsa on the Prairie that was written by one of my favorite professors, Jody Swilky, who teaches at Drake University.  I have a piece from my husband who is an illustrator and graphic designer.  A painting from a Grand View professor.  A photograph from a professional artist, Susan Johnson.  A mini sub-collection from a family of artists.  And a poem from a local published writer.  I think it provides a strong balance in types of art and I like the family aspect as well.

I have dropped off a hard drive to DP’s Craig Dietrich to collect the video files from Iowa at 30 Frames Per Second.  I will be converting as many as I can starting next week.  Also, Chris and I have the opportunity to talk about our projects through DLS with a visiting librarian from Senegal on Tuesday.  I am excited to see what he thinks of the Iowa Writes Collection.

After spending weeks researching cataloging schema with the intent of updating the current eGranary system, Cliff and I sat down and talked about the practicality of a hybrid system.  We are now going to open up our ideas to the larger librarian world.  We will be setting up a WIKI to collect feedback.  I just need to get our question formulated and an explanation of what we have thought of so far.  Cliff is off again this Sunday and won’t return until the semester is over, so we will be working through email to get this done.

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Iowa Writes is up!

April 17, 2008 at 2:18 pm (IMLS Fellowship)

I have exciting news, the Iowa Writes Collection is now part of the permanent collection through DLS. Here is the link, enjoy!

Iowa Writes

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