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DigiCULT
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Info
4
the `building skins of the future.' SmartWrap
combines plastics with devices that insulate,
store energy, heat, and provide access to
power and light. For example, within
SmartWrap solar panels collect energy, flat
batteries store it, and light emitting diodes
can take advantage of the energy to illumi-
nate, change colour, or to display patterns
such as advertisements or textures, say the
`brick look' on it surface.The combination
of plastics, printing technologies, phase
change materials, and organic light emitting
diodes (OLED) will provide heritage insti-
tutions with a wide range of new opportu-
nities (e.g. the ability to create
micro-environments for exhibitions).
A
s in previous issues we have highlighted
key events. DigiCULT's website sup-
ports a database of upcoming events which
is more comprehensive than the information
published here.We hope that the cultural
heritage community will contribute infor-
mation about events to this database and
help us to make it a richer source of infor-
mation.
W
e have included some shorter articles
or pointers to recent reports or new
sources of information that the readers
might find beneficial. For example, in this
issue we have highlighted the launch by the
UK and Ireland branch of the Inter- nation-
al Association of Music Libraries, Archives
and Documentation Centres (IAML) of
Cecilia, an online database of music
resources and collections throughout the
UK and Ireland.To increase the diversity in
the types and sources of information that we
are able to make accessible to readers
DigiCULT continues to develop its network
of correspondents. At the same time we
hope that if readers have ideas for articles or
wish to call materials to the attention of
DigiCULT readers they will contact Daisy
Abbott at d.abbott@hatii.arts.gla.ac.uk.
Seamus Ross & John Pereira
Editors, DigiCULT.Info
creating the expertise, including an under-
standing of how the plates themselves were
created, what hardware and software will
enable the project to extract the maximum
amounts of historic-scientific information
from the photographic plates.What becomes
obvious in reading this article is that under-
standing how information is represented on
the medium is essential in selecting and
establishing adequate digital imaging systems.
This conclusion, has sadly been overlooked
by many digitisation projects as they rush to
purchase scanning equipment and to get
underway with digitisation. In Minerva
Europe has an activity which is attempting to
promote best practice in digitisation and it
has worked hard to foster the take-up of the
Lund Principles within the European Union
Member States. It is now embarking on
developing training programmes. Good digi-
tisation practice is an international problem
as is evident from the report of Selenay Aytaš
(Isik University, Istanbul) on a survey she
conducted to investigate the level of knowl-
edge about digitisation issues among library
professionals in Turkey. Among her conclu-
sions is the argument that librarians and
other information professionals in Turkey
need access to professional development
opportunities in both digitisation and digital
preservation.There is an international need
for programs of continuous professional
development more generally in cultural and
heritage informatics.
D
igiCULT.Info may too often concen-
trate on the more classical applications
of information, communication and tech-
nology (ICT) to the cultural heritage sector.
An exhibition which just closed at the
Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum
(NYC), offered an exciting glimpse of how
combinations of technologies are delivering
new materials for architectural spaces. The
progress of the exhibition can be followed
in a series of photos accessible at:
http://ndm.si.edu/ SOLOS/. Stephen
Kieran and James Timberlake demonstrated
materials that they believe will be one of
Libraries Information Infrastructures,
Personalization and Recommender Systems
in Digital Libraries, and Digital Archiving
and Preservation.
T
he report of the last of these working
groups, Invest to Save: Report and
Recommendations of the NSF-DELOS
Working Group on Digital Archiving and
Preservation (2003), (http://delos-noe.iei.
pi.cnr.it/activities/internationalforum/Joint
WGs/digitalarchiving/Digitalarchiving.pdf)
charts the research that is needed if digital
libraries are to have access to the experi-
ence, methodologies, practices, and tech-
nologies necessary to ensure the long term
accessibility and usability of the digital
assets that they acquire.While this report
has identified work to be done, it acknow-
ledges that some high quality research and
experimentation in digital preservation that
is delivering solutions on the ground. In
this issue Filip Boudrez of the City Ar-
chives of Antwerp describes in `Preserving
electronic records from database-driven
information systems' the recordkeeping sys-
tem developed by the DAVID Project to
enable them to investigate the preservation
of authentic and durable electronic records.
D
aisy Abbott of the DigiCULT team
has provided an introduction to
Human Language Technologies (HLT). In
future issues we aim to build on the foun-
dation she has laid by investigating in more
detail how these technologies will improve
access to and understanding of the cultural
heritage.The uses are varied from devices
which can be controlled through speech
input, to support for cross-lingual search
engines, to intelligent labelling in museums
and other heritage institutions.
J
ean-Pierre De Cuyper, of the Royal
Observatory in Belgium, introduces us to a
project that aims to digitise astronomical and
aerial photographic plates.The project, a col-
laboration between content holders, academ-
ic institutions, and the commercial sector, is