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Digitizing from an Archival Student’s Perspective

October 27th, 2009 · No Comments

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Digital preservation is a wonderful thing…as long as I do not have to do it. As I work in an archive/library at my university, digitizing a collection for online use, I have lots of time to think about digital preservation, its benefits and disadvantages, how the nature of libraries and archives is changing and what it means for us all.

As a newly graduated student, I dream of processing unique materials, rummaging through boxes and loosely organized files to find the rhythm of a collection. Documents and artifacts that tell someone’s story, that make me chuckle or make me sad, that surprise me and some that bore me. These materials get my hands dirty, make me feel gritty, make my skin break out, but make me feel real. But the scanner? It makes me feel definitely like something other than an archivist or a librarian. I must work quickly and without thinking – I am there to scan only, not to make judgment calls, or to find order in chaos, nor to find that collection rhythm.
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Category: Archiving Challenges

Skills Librarians Need

October 27th, 2009 · No Comments

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  • Call a spade a spade or if it’s not a spade, don’t be afraid to call it a dud.
  • Take your space in cyberspace.
  • Go to the head of the class.
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff.
  • Read, write, speak and share.
  • Techno tools of the trade.
  • Learn fast, keep up and smile.

Adobe-Acrobat-16x16Skills Librarians Need Checklist

The librarian of today has come a long way from the bun-wearing matron with thick glasses and sensible shoes who spent a large part of day checking out books, assessing fines and admonishing those who were less than perfectly quiet. Librarians come in all shapes and sizes, all ages and genders. There are those who come into the profession straight from college and library school as well as many who discover that librarianship is the next logical step after spending part of a career lifetime working in other areas. Books remain a major part of a library’s function, but technology has risen in the ranks and has become so pervasive, no librarian worth his or her salt can enter or exist in the profession without at least cursory knowledge of major innovations in technology and a keen interest in what lies ahead.
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