Digitisation:
What, why and how
Bryan Kalms
[email protected]
The Atlas is funded by the Australian Government under the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy
and further supported by the Super Science Initiative of the Education Investment Fund
Topics for today
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Context of the talk
Defining digitisation
Benefits of digitisation
Issues in digitisation
Getting started with digitisation
Measuring digitisation performance
The digitisation landscape
Where to from here
Context of talk
• Curation
– Supported through science
• Natural history focus
– Applies to cultural collections as well
• Information and overview
– Get you started
Digitisation and you
What is digitisation?
Digitisation is…
Moo,
moo, moo
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Digital
asset
What is a digital asset?
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Data in a data base
Digital image of a collection item
Digital image of a painting
Digital audio file
Digital video file
Digital version of a photographic slide
Digital version of a microscope slide
Scanned (OCR?) version of a field note book
Digital CT scan
Digital copy of…
Core digitisation activities
Making
digital
Databasing
Managing
data
Digitisation
Governing
digitisation
Using
technology
Sharing
data
Digitisation process
Plan
Organise
Digitise
Manage
Share
Why digitise?
Benefits of digitisation
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It’s (core) business
Reduced object handling
Easier loans procedures
Easier data sharing
Easier compliance with legal obligations
Produce more complete data sets
Meet client/user needs
Create opportunities for better work practices
Facilitate new ways of looking at the data
Greater audience reach
Assist curation process
Raise the institution’s profile
Issues in digitisation
Issues in digitisation
• Accepting the need for
digitisation
• Deciding what to digitise
• Knowing your collection
• Knowing users and uses
• Laying the foundation
• Adopting standards
• Data management
• Funding and resourcing
• Managing culture change
• Managing data quality
• Managing data
sensitivities
• Feeding the digitisation
process
• Dealing with rights
Issue: Accepting the need for
digitisation
• Overcome the ‘Why?’
– Sell the benefits
• Financial, operational, scientific, practical
• Overcome resistance
– Curators highly affected
– ‘Can’t’ is really ‘It’s hard’
– Show what’s possible
• Avoid becoming overwhelmed by the task
– It’s all in the strategy
– Accept it’s a long term project
Issue: Deciding what to digitise
• Everything?
– Probably not
• Selected items?
– Strategic?
– User driven?
– Best contribution to society/science/organisational
objectives?
– Condition?
– …?
• Key is to know your:
– Collection
– Users and uses of digital assets
Issue: Knowing your collection
• What objects do you have?
• What is their condition?
• Which are digitised?
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Databased?
Imaged?
How are these digital assets managed?
How much time and $$ have you spent making these
assets?
• Where is your collection going in the future?
• What does this mean for digitisation?
Object categories, eg…
• Documents:
monographs, journals,
notebooks, ledgers, field
notes, photographs,
maps
• Preserved and dried
specimens—individuals
• Preserved and dried
specimens—groups,
drawers
• Living specimens
• Field work activities
• In-situ specimens and
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scenes
Analogue images:
photographic slides,
paintings and drawings,
x-ray plates, microfilm,
other images, eg CT
scans
Analogue multimedia
Microscope slides
Analogue sound files
…
Issue: Users of digital assets, eg…
• Researchers
• Natural resource
managers
• Teachers
• Land developers
• Students
• Consultants
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Marketers
Auditors
Citizen scientists
Collection managers
Policy makers
Curators
Issue: Uses of digital assets, eg…
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Education
Species identification
Policy making
Transcription
Resource management
Entertainment
Biodiversity modelling
Collection valuation
Publication
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Collection management
Taxonomy
Collection planning
In lieu of specimen loans
Recordkeeping
Online viewing
Mapping
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Digitisation activities
Digitisation processes
Digitisation resources
(Technology
Trained staff
Facilities
Standards)
Digitisation
principles
Digitisation plans
Digitisation strategy
Digitisation performance
management
Digital collections manager
Issue: Laying the (ideal) foundation
Issue: Adopting standards
S
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S
The good thing about standards is that there are so
many of them from which to choose
What standards?
• Choose a standard
– ALA has guidance
• Promote the standard within your organisation
• Get on with digitisation!
Standards-based characteristics
for digital assets
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Resolution
Level of compression
Image size
Calibration
Bit depth
Authentication
Audio sampling
resolution
• File format
• Encoding format
• Interpretation aids, eg
colour patches
• Preferred access or
delivery arrangements
Issue: Data management
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Changing file formats
Changing standards
Backups
Data migration
OS changes
Software changes
Issue: Funding and resourcing
• Equipment
– Digitisers, IT
– Disk storage
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Facilities
Updated work practices
Expertise
People
Planning and analysis
Digitisation management
Research
Use of volunteers
Issue: Managing culture change
• Systematic digitisation requires cultural change
• And management leadership
– ‘Digitisation is part of our core business’
Issue: Managing data quality
• You do have data quality issues, right now
– Will be highlighted by digitisation
– They are independent of digitisation
• They are not an excuse for doing nothing
• How will you deal with them?
– Come to understand them as you digitise
• Use Atlas tools
Issue: Managing data sensitivities
• You have sensitive data, right now
– Independent of digitisation
• How will you deal with them?
– Digitise and sort it out later
• ALA sensitive data service of use
Issue: Feeding the digitisation
process
• Resources needed to provide specimens
– Curators highly affected
– Planning essential
• Integrate into BAU
Issue: Dealing with rights
• Intellectual property is an issue
• Right to information legislation
• Capture rights in metadata
– Copyright, ownership, moral
Getting started with
digitisation
The systematic way
Appoint
manager
Review
Set up
working
group
Collect
data
Digitise
Analyse
data
Plan
Report
The practical way
Just go for it!
Going for it…
Digitisation
manager
Develop
strategy/pl
an
Digitise
Review
and
backfill
Going for it…
• Have a strategy/plan
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Consolidate images, sounds etc
Start with a small project
Decide naming, storing and backup arrangements
Allocate responsibilities
Monitor
Learn lessons
Document everything
• Work out your strategy and policy context as you go
• The best approach if you are DMM0/1
• Bring the organisation with you
Measuring
performance
Digitisation maturity model
We how
are building the
We all know
(next)
idea together
well we are
doing
We all know what to do and
how it all fits together, and
all share the same idea
We are getting our act
together and starting to
Continuous
share the same idea
innovation
by everyone
Managers
Some of us are
take
doing a good job
No-one has any idea
responsibility
what's happening
fortakes
improving
Management
across the organisation
digitisation
responsibility
for
digitisation
Digitisation left
to each part of
the organisation
Digitisation left to individuals
who have their standard
processes
Digitisation left to individuals
Digitisation maturity model
Choose your level
Digitisation landscape
Digitisation activities
• International
– NSF spending $US100m
– Several European initiatives (Europeana)
• Australian
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ALA
Accepted in cultural collections
Mostly piecemeal in natural history collections
Need for digitisation strategies becoming accepted
Digitisation becoming expected as part of research
grants
– Resourcing the main impediment
What’s next…
…for you?
The Atlas of Living Australia Participants
The Atlas is funded by the
Australian Government under the
National Collaborative Research
Infrastructure Strategy
and further supported by the
Super Science Initiative of the
Education Investment Fund
Download

Digitisation seminar - Atlas of Living Australia