CLIS Student Chapter of the American Library Association

Sharing Online Stuff January 16, 2008

Filed under: ALA Midwinter Meeting — edesmond @ 9:01 pm

Session: Digital Library Technologies Interest Group (DLTIG) Meeting – Sun. Jan. 13, 10:30-1:00

At the DLTIG meeting on Sunday, as part of a program called “Share Online Stuff,” several presenters shared projects that their institutions have recently been working on. First Holley Long, Digital Initiatives Librarian at the University of Colorado-Boulder, talked about the University of Colorado Digital Library, which will launch in two weeks. Ms. Long described some ways in which this project was challenging–particularly because previously metadata had been stored in many different places. Some of the keys to overcoming these challenges were collaboration between many departments, the adoption of a common software platform, and the creation of flexible policies and best practices. The digital library will contain four collections and about 35,000 objects, and will also have shared collections with other institutions.

Richard Smith of the Wolfner Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in Missouri described the BARD program (Braille and Audio Reading Download). This is a program of the Library of Congress National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. The “Talking Books” program began in the 1930s, recording books onto vinyl records to distribute to people who could not read standard printed materials. Starting in 2008, recordings will be put online, and be downloadable to a “digital talking book player” device. People who register with the service will be able to log into the BARD website and search for books by author, title, subject or keyword, and search for magazines by title or date. Mr. Smith also showed attendees two new sections of the Wolfner Library’s website. You Say It How? is a pronunciation guide where you can hear the names of thousands of public figures pronounced correctly. Recommended Reads is a compilation of bibliographies in different categories, which can be read or listened to.

Next Kerri Willette of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago talked about the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection. She explained that an artists’ book may be thought of as “an art object in book form,” though she noted that “book form” can sometimes be interpreted very loosely. This is both a physical collection and is currently being digitized. Ms. Willette described some of the difficulties they have had in determining how to share and repurpose metadata in different formats. Particularly, they have had to deal with the question of conforming to other libraries’ cataloging standards versus creating more in-depth records. They also hoped to find “a visual way for users to browse the catalog.” To this end, much of the collection of nearly 5000 objects has been photographed and is now online.

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