Information or Artifact: Digitizing Photographic Negatives and Transparencies, Part 1

The following is a guest post by Carl Fleischhauer, a Digital Initiatives Project Manager in NDIIPP. What does it mean to digitize a photographic negative?  My previous pair of blogs discussed digitizing books (and other textual materials), exploring the ways that the process captures informational and artifactual aspects of the original item.  The short version […]

Information or Artifact: Digitizing a Book, Part 2

The following is a guest post by Carl Fleischhauer, a Digital Initiatives Project Manager in NDIIPP. Yesterday, I blogged about the digital reformatting of historical books and other documents.  I reported that virtually all digitization projects in memory institutions present the information from the pages in the form of a searchable text.  I also noted […]

Data is the New Black

At our recent Preservation Storage Meeting, the word “data” was frequently mentioned.  This was of some note to me, as cultural heritage organizations have, until recently, spoken of “collections” and “content” or even “files,” but not data.  This is of course not the case at universities, where social science and observational datasets are very much […]


This story was previously published on By now you may have gotten an email from a friend or colleague pointing you to the Team Digital Preservation animations, the Saturday morning-style cartoon whose heroes defend against threats to digital preservation. The cartoon series is one of the many innovative resources that DigitalPreservationEurope uses to boost […]

“Neighborhood Watch” for Repository Quality Assurance

The following is a guest post from Stephen Abrams Associate Director, UC Curation Center/California Digital Library. Stephen recently represented an action team from NDSA innovation working group in a presentation on this idea at the Designing Storage Architectures for Preservation Collections meeting. His slides from that talk are available online (PDF). During the recent meeting […]

October 2011 Digital Preservation Newsletter is Now Available

The October 2011 Library of Congress Digital Preservation Newsletter is now available. In this issue: *Personal Digital Archiving talked about at the National Book Festival and on our blog, “The Signal” *More from our ABCs of Digital Preservation series on “The Signal” – B is for Bit Preservation and C is for Collections *A […]

Digital Preservation-Friendly File Formats for Scanned Images

From a preservation standpoint, some digital file formats are better than others.  The basic issue is how readable a format remains over the course of time and successive waves of technological change.  The ideal format will convey its content accurately regardless of advances in hardware, software and other aspects of information technology. Over the last […]

Interview with Brett Bobley of the Office for Digital Humanities at the NEH

The following is a guest post from Trevor Owens, Digital Archivist with the Office of Strategic Initiatives. I’m excited to share this third interview for Insights, an occasional feature of The Signal sharing interviews and conversations between National Digital Stewardship Alliance Innovation working group members and individuals working on projects related to preservation, access and […]

Piggybacking to Avoid Going Down the Rabbit Hole, or What I Learned at the First DPOE Workshop

The following is a guest post from Sam Meister, Digital Archivist, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. During the week of September 20 – 23, 2011, a group of individuals from all across the United States descended on the Library of Congress to attend the Digital Preservation Outreach and Education (DPOE) initiative’s first ever Train the […]