June 23, 2006

LISA V: E. Owens, Long-term preservation of e-journals

Day 3 of LISA kicked off with a presentation from Evan Owens of Portico; a lively talk with some thought-provoking questions. These are my notes, not detailed transcriptions, and may include my own opinions.

Long-term preservation of electronic journals, a survey of current initiatives

Going to talk instead about the larger context of the explosion of digital information…since he submitted his abstract CLIR has done a massive survey and he doesn’t want to duplicate.

Snippets of a 1996 article in “Serials Review” about visions of the future of journal publishing. Going to dive into some specific details as to what is still not known –

* Introduction to digital preservation
* Organizational components
* Technical components
* E-Journals and digital preservation
* More visions: past and future

Long term preservation = interoperability with the future

It’s everyone’s problem, but it isn’t the same problem for everyone!

Many, many varieties of preservation projects with varying degrees of control, metadata and formatting.

Really good resource for digital preservation: PADI (most resources discussed in this talk are linked there).

Auditing and certification is a hot topic now but has a long way to go.

Lots of questions at the higher layers of technological components…

Sample projects:

* JHOVE: JSTOR/Harvard Validation Environment
* GDFR: Global Digital Format Registry
* PREMIS: Data Dictionary for Preservation Metadata (Preservation Metadata Implementation Strategies)

Journals: Publishing models are evolving; practices and product vary widely (often have multiple manifestations of a single work). There is still a lot to do, and there are a lot of problems.

Persistent identifiers; versions & revisions; structured metadata.

This is so new; there are no standards or best practices yet, it’s all being developed right now. No agreement yet but they’re working on it….

Review of technical approaches (web harvesting, ingest and normalize publisher source files; HTML vs PDF…)

Portico’s archival strategy: source file archiving (preserve the components, not the rendition); preserving intellectual content, not ‘look and feel” of HTML; preserve only essential features of the user interface.

Will what we wish to preserve be preserved? (Can’t preserve everything.) Need standards, best practices, and diversity. But remember: Technology doesn’t always make things better!


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