Digital Collections

Fail, Fail, Fail, Success?

This past week I had the privilege of speaking on a panel at Access 2011 about failing entitled, "If you ain’t failin’, you ain’t tryin’!" Amy Buckland moderated the panel where we each took five minutes to tell a library tech fail story to encourage the audience to share their failure stories. I think it went over great, and was cathartic to say the least.   I shared my story, and afterword I had that familiar feeling of "but, wait!

Node Import fails me | Hack the database!

Over on the dev version of our digital collections site we are working on lots of new features. One of them being JPEG2000 support for our World War I trench maps, World War I aerial photos, and World War II Italian topographical maps. Lightbox2 simply does not cut it when researchers would like to examine these wonderful images. Being that we are pretty short staffed here and don’t have the wherewithall to whip up a Drupal module to do this "properly", we have come up with what I think is a pretty creative solution to adding the jp2 images to the records in Drupal.

Library day in the life - 5 - Day 4

Wow, day 4 already. This week seems to be going by fast. Worked from home for a bit this morning and then took the train in again. Email this week has been miraculously low. Probably from all the moves. The 5th floor eerily empty, absolutely bizarre up there now. Morning Morning soundtrack: BBC World Service podcast, Aphex Twin - Druqks, Metallica - Master of Puppets. (BTW, did you know Metallica did not produce any records after …And Justice for All.

MEETINGS ALL DAY - ?_?

Meetings all day. Will everything go better than expected, or will I rage? Morning: email - nope, I’m in meetings all day. Got into work and discovered the contract worker for the giant 25,000 object digitization project started yesterday and nobody told me. LOOK OF DISAPPROVAL Checked in the worker and made sure that she was provided with proper documentation regarding file-naming convention, scanning requirements, and storage. Liaison meeting - teaching with iClickers.

The ultimate question when working from home - When do I put pants on?

I should just write a script that pulls from all of these librarydayinthelife & #libday4 tags and make it write a post for me. Morning: Email. Surprisingly not that much for the morning. Hopefully the trend stays that way through out the day. Podcast Monday! TWiT, Spark, Quirks & Quarks. Anybody else find Calacanis really annoying when he is on TWiT? Fink put me on to a Python course from MIT.

New Stuffs on the Horizon...

Now that Historical Perspectives of Canadian Publishing is all finished up we have time, albeit a small amount of time, to concentrate on other portions of the Digital Collections site, and other collections. World War, 1939-1945, German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection is nearly complete. Only a few boxes remain to be scanned. The next portion of the project is World War, 1939-1945, Jewish Underground Resistance Collection. This collection is predominantly from 1941-1944 and will contain 325 items.

Memes, Smemes, Email, SQL, and Galleries

Library Day in the Life - meme validation below Theme of the day was SQL queries. Morning: Email, email, email, email. Cleaned up some more raunchy code in a effort to make the theme migration to Drupal 6 less hectic. Lots of SQL queries to un-hack code, and write said code in a standardized fashion. Note to self, do not ever hire immature developers. Continued to work with Bepress on setting up a couple new journals.

Internment Camp Correspondences, Gestapo Camp Correspondences, updates, and Russell Library

More updates on the World War, 1939-1945, German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection. The Internment Camp Correspondences are now finished. There weren’t too many of them - only 56 to be exact. With the internment camp letters finished, we have moved on to the Gestapo Camp Correspondences. I have also added the “Related Information” feature to the World War, 1939-1945, German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection and Russell Library Collection. It is just a block in the right column, which is an extension of the faceted search module.

Concentration Camp Correspondences

After an entire year of scanning and meta data entry by a couple of amazing students, we have finished a portion of the World War, 1939-1945, German Concentration Camps and Prisons Collection. The entirety of the Concentration Camp Correspondences [http://digitalcollections.mcmaster.ca/concentration-camp-correspondence] - 1031 to be exact - are up online with full meta data records. Also, a very help volunteer has been going through and translating/summarizing the records. If anybody knows German, Yiddish, Polish, or French and would like to volunteer, please contact me.

OMG! You Don't Need CONTENTdm!!!

So, I bet a lot of you are wondering what is up with my with my title? Well, I don’t plan on standing up here taking potshots at OCLC for 15 minutes, but I am sure some people in the crowd wouldn’t mind. Basically, the title should have had a very long sub-title along the lines of, like Dr. Strangelove or: How I learned to Stop Worrying and Embrace Open Source Software.