Stereotypical Vendors?

Recent posts by Richard Wallis and Paul Miller, both of Talis (a 40-year-old company in the U.K. specializing in information and metadata management), question a perceived division of library automation vendor technical staff with that of open source solution technical staff. I wasn’t at Code4Lib this year (I’m going to try to get there next year), but from the context of the blog postings and comments it seems like the Talis developers were showing some really cool stuff and concern was expressed by participants that they don’t want to see Code4Lib turned into a vendor forum.

Brewster Kahle on the Economics and Feasibility of Mass Book Digitization

Brewster Kahle, Director of the Internet Archive, was interviewed this week in a Chronicle of Higher Education podcast on the Economics and Feasibility of Mass Book Digitization. Among the many interesting points in the interview was that one of the biggest challenges is to such a mass digitization effort to believe that to digitize massive numbers of books and make them available is actually possible. The Open Content Alliance has put together a suite of technology that brings down the cost for a color scan with OCR to 10 cents per page or about $30 per book. He then goes on to perform this calculation: the library system in the U.S. is a 12B industry. One million books digitized a year is $30M, or “a little less than .3 percent of one year’s budget of the United States library system would build a 1 million book library that would be available to anyone for free.” He also covers copyright concerns including the more liberal copyright laws in countries such as China.

Combining Service Oriented Architecture with a Single Business Approach

This month I’ve come across one great article and one great report on Service Oriented Architectures. The first came from Sally Rogers at Ohio State University in the form of an article from CIO magazine last year:


Koch, Christopher. 2006. The Truth About SOA. CIO Magazine, June 15. http://www.cio.com/archive/061506/soa.html (accessed March 27, 2007).

This article does a great job at laying the groundwork for the broad “what” and “why” (as well as the “why not”) of SOA, and I agree with Sally that it makes a better introduction to the topic than most of the white paper that I presented at the meeting. The two best paragraphs out of the article come towards the very end:

What Librarians Could Learn From Journalists

On Tuesday, the Poynter Institute (a school for journalists, future journalists, and teachers of journalists) released results of their EyeTrack07 study — an examination of reader behavior in the print and online mediums. An article on their website goes into more detail about the initial data but what caught my eye as of interest to the library community is the headline (“The Myth of Short Attention Spans”) and this conclusion “The reading-deep phenomenon [thoroughly reading a selected story] is even stronger online than in print.” Their website site has a video which explains the process and some of the initial results.

NDIIP Funding Statement by the Librarian of Congress

Early last month I mentioned what was happening to NDIIP funds with the impending passage of what became Public Law 110-5 [PDF] and posted a copy of a letter I sent to my senators urging them to reconsider the funding rescission. Of course, I wasn’t the only one who asked congress to reconsider. Strangely (I thought) the Library of Congress has been silent on the topic. Silent until last week, that is.

Survey on Digital Preservation Systems is Seeking Respondents

There are just a few days left to respond to the “International Digital Preservation Systems Survey” being run by Karim Boughida and Sally Hubbard from the Getty Research Institute. From the survey description:

This survey is intended to provide an overview of digital preservation system (DPS) implementation. DPS is defined here as an assembly of computer hardware, software and policies equivalent to a TDR (trusted digital repository) “whose mission is to provide reliable, long-term access to managed digital resources to its designated community, now, and in the future”1.

Can You Hear Me Now? DLTJ as a Podcast

Update 19-Jan-2011: I’ve decommissioned this service. Talkr seems to be unavailable, and I haven’t had time to find a replacement.

If reading the thoughts of the Jester via this blog wasn’t enough, you can now hear this witty (witless?) insights read to you through your favorite podcast player. I’ve been messing with some technology this weekend for a mashup of my own.

First, start with the Talkr service, which will take the text of your RSS feed posts and convert them to an audio file of a computer generated voice speaking the text to you. The audio file is included as an attachment in a new RSS feed of your post content. In the sidebar of DLTJ, you can subscribe to audio version of this blog using the “Subscribe to Postcast” graphic.Subscribe to Podcast graphic

“Draft Principles for Digitized Content” from the Digitization Policy Task Force of ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy

A note on the LITA-L mailing list from M. Claire Stewart (a member of the American Library Association Office of Information Technology Policy Task Force on Digitization Policy) announces the availability of the Draft Principles for Digitized Content in the form of a series of blog postings on the ALA website. Stewart’s message notes: