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DigiCULT
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information management. Also envisaged is
the presentation of art collections in a `dig-
ital time machine', suited for librarians and
consumers, built on a multimedia temporal
and spatial database, enhanced with systems
for automated analysis of audiovisual con-
tent, multimodal interaction, and context-
aware, flexible and reliable content delivery.
A
mong the partners are: UvA, CWI,
TUDelft, TNO, CTIT-UTwente,
Telematics Institute, Philips, IBM,
LogicaCMG, VU, UU, V2_, Waag Society,
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision,
the Dutch Forensic Institute, DBNL, De
Politie, NOC-NSF, DBNL, and Van Dale
Lexicografie. Collaboration is foreseen with
EU projects and networks such as AMI,
PrestoSpace and DELOS.
DARE Digital Academic Repositories
T
he SURF programme Digital
Academic Repositories (DARE:
http://www.darenet.nl) is a joint initia-
tive of the Dutch universities to make all
of their research results digitally accessi-
ble. The National Library (http://www.
kb.nl), the Royal Netherlands Academy
of Arts and Sciences (http://www.knaw.
nl/) and the Netherlands Organisation for
Scientific Research (http://www.nwo.nl)
are also co-operating in this unique project.
The programme has been given financial
support by the government with a fund
of
2 million for the period 2003-2006.
With this grant the Dutch government is
giving a strong boost to innovation in the
provision of academic information in the
Netherlands.
T
he first year of DARE focused on
implementing the basic infrastructure
by setting up and linking the repositories.
More important, however, is the submis-
sion of scientific content to the repositories.
Every year projects are funded to stimu-
late the development of services based on
the research information made available
through the infrastructure. Also, initiating
and promoting the submission to and use
of scientific content from the repositories
is an important focus point of the DARE
programme.
A
s of January 2004 DAREnet has been
demonstrating the network of the
local collections held by all the Dutch uni-
versities and related institutions, presenting
them to the user in a consistent form. This
makes it possible to search one or more
of the repositories concerned. No other
nation in the world offers such easy access
to its academic research output in digital
form.
Creative Commons Licences
T
he Dutch Creative Commons licenc-
es were officially launched this June.
Lawrence Lessig, the Creative Commons
chairman and a Professor of Information
Law at Stanford University, was present
during the launch event in Amsterdam and
gave an inspiring speech on the concept
of Free Culture. The Creative Commons is
an American initiative to optimally stimu-
late the Internet distribution of copyright-
protected works of literature, photography,
music, film and learning without infringing
these copyrights. By following a number
of steps on a simple Web application, mak-
ers can assign their works one of the CC
licences such as `some rights reserved' or
`mash me'. More than one-and-a-half mil-
lion works have been licensed in this way
since the Creative Commons were set up in
2002. The Dutch translation of the Creative
Commons licences will enable artists and
academics to adjust the traditional copy-
right in such a way that it does justice to
contemporary creation methods. The trans-
lation is a DISC initiative (a co-production
of Waag Society and Nederland Kennisland)
in co-operation with the University of
Amsterdam's Institute for Information Law
(http://www.ivir.nl/).
M
ore information can be found at
http://www.disc.nl.
Science communication through the
Internet
T
he Web site Museumkennis (http://
www.museumkennis.nl) was recent-
ly launched. Museumkennis (Museum
Knowledge) is the jointly operated educa-
tional information site of the Dutch state
museums of Antiquities, Ethnology and
Natural History. The difference between
Museumkennis and more traditional joint
projects can be identified in these three
aims:
exploration of new organisational meth-
ods for real fusion of several organisa-
tions' information services in different
knowledge domains;
experimentation with information
retrieval;
and research into the means of visitor
involvement and `question driven' access
to collections.
T
raditional `Googling' methods of
information retrieval are not sufficient
to provide users with a meaningful guide
through online collections of cultural herit-
age as they lack the wider context in which
an object resides. The Museum Knowledge
project started with a vision of information
enrichment, supporting users finding their
way though the collections. For exam-
ple, `When you search for the topic "gold",
how interesting would it be to be informed
not only about the mineral but also on
its use for payment in ancient Rome and
on its use in the arts and crafts of Middle
Meso America?' In setting up the project
it became apparent that a jointly oper-
ated online question and answering serv-
ice would be highly appreciated by users.
Research into different ways to provide
meaningful access to the virtual collection
is to be continued.
S
econdary school students are the main
focus of the project in terms of end-
users. After elaborate visitor evaluation, the
site has recently been launched. Preliminary
conclusions are:
1. Collaboration between different institu-