Monday, December 14, 2009

Archives in the News

Two items of note, hat-tip to the Posterity Project:

-At its first meeting chaired by new Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) recommended $2.9 million in grants for digitizing historical records, electronic records preservation, and historical documentary editions. Go here to read the press release.

-On Wednesday, December 16, 2009, the Information Policy, Census and National Archives Subcommittee of the Congressional Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (that's a mouthful, hmm?) will hold a hearing entitled: "History Museum or Records Access Agency? Defining and Fulfilling the Mission of the National Archives and Records Administration." The hearing will be webcast on the committee's website.

(I enjoy the title of that hearing, as it seems to encompass one of the central tensions of our profession. I'll be curious to see how a senate subcommittee addresses that tension...)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Information R/evolution

An interesting (short) video by Michael Welsh, a ‘digital ethonography’ professor at Kansas State University, whose previous video "The Machine is Us/ing Us" was an Internet sensation:



Interesting-- as a conversation starter. As Peter Van Garderen points out, there's a lot to be said for quality metadata, which takes planning and coordination and sometimes, even, experts. (I'm sure our catalogers will have some things to say on that subject!)

Introducing Our New Blog

Recently, some of us from Special Collections gave a presentation about our new finding aids search to other library employees. The feedback we received indicated a general interest in learning more about what archivists and special collections librarians do, and how that is different from the work of our colleagues who actually, you know, check stuff out to patrons. ;)

Most archivists who blog professionally do so to deliver news about new and cool collections and projects. While we'd like to do some of that, we'd also like to talk about the differences (and similarities) between libraries and archives; basic archival functions; archives in the news; and the possible uses of Web 2.0 applications for archives/special collections.

We'd like this blog to be a two-way street--we want to garner your input and start conversations, via comments.

Welcome, and thanks for reading!