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October 21, 2016


DSC has taken on a number of projects to grow the OAC, Calisphere, and UC Shared Images collections; bring on new contributors; explore opportunities for developing and implementing new technologies; and much more.

Current projects

Harvesting California's Bounty

CDL is pleased to announce that we have received funding to expand our metadata harvesting operations for Calisphere, enabling us to aggregate and provide even more comprehensive access to unique digital resources from across the state of California. The initiative is supported by the US Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian. The funds will enable the CDL’s Digital Special Collections team to add a temporary (15-month) programmer/analyst position to work directly on tasks related to staging and conducting metadata harvests of hundreds of additional collections from libraries, archives, and museums in California. The collections range from at-risk audio-visual recordings contributed by UC Libraries and other organizations as part of the California Audio-Visual Preservation Project (CAVPP) — to early stereographs from the California State Library, and local history resources from institutions such as the Oakland Public Library and Sonoma County Library. Once harvested, the collections will be made available through Calisphere, adding to over half a million unique research resources that are now broadly available to UC users and the broader public. The metadata for these collections will also subsequently be made available through the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA). While these collections are currently available online through local websites, many are not readily or easily discoverable at statewide and national network levels. Aggregating these disperse digital resources will ensure they are findable, and will undoubtedly reveal new connections for researchers.

off siteSocial Networks and Archival Context (SNAC) Project

In collaboration with the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities at the University of Virginia (project lead) and the School of Information at UC Berkeley, this project is exploring the potential for archival authority records to improve access to cultural resources in libraries, archives, and museums. SNAC builds on the recent release of an archival authority control standard (Encoded Archival Context – Corporate bodies, Persons, and Families [EAC-CPF]) to "unlock" descriptions of people from descriptions of their records and link them together in new ways. SNAC is also laying the groundwork for a sustainable international cooperative program for archival description, hosted by the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The Cooperative will enable archivists, librarians, and scholars to jointly maintain information about the people documented in archival collections. It will also improve the economy and quality of archival processing and description, and address the challenge of discovering, locating, and using distribute historical records.


Past projects

American West

“New Frontiers in the Digital Library: Social and Ecological Diversity of the American West” was a multi-year, grant funded project to create a virtual collection drawing from the resources of major libraries, archives, and museums. The collection was assembled and a prototype site created. In addition, research into automation of clustering and classification was conducted, a date normalization utility created, and an OAI harvesting structure implemented for the CDL.

External linkArchivesSpace

Supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, this multi-year project will result in the merger of the Archon and the Archivists' Toolkit (AT) into a next-generation open-source archives management system. The project is a collaboration between the libraries of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (which developed Archon), and UC San Diego and New York University (which co-developed AT). The CDL’s provided independent alpha-testing and "build and release" support, to facilitate the validation and deployment of the ArchivesSpace software. The system will provide broad, integrated support for managing archival records and manuscript collections, including tracking collection workflow information; describing materials within collections, including digitized objects; generating finding aids (that can be published through systems such as the OAC); and more.

Audio/Visual Working Group

This working group identified and documented "best practices" for creating durable, long-term A/V file formats; these are now documented in the CDL Digital File Format Recommendations. The group also developed functional requirements for delivering those file formats in the OAC and Calisphere. Members of the group include DSC and Digital Preservation Program staff, in addition to two consultants from the UC libraries: Gary Handman (UC Berkeley) and David Seubert (UC Santa Barbara).

off siteCalifornia Cultures

California Cultures is a curated collection in Calisphere. It was created in response to H.R. 1905, an appropriation from the US Congress through Library of Congress’s American Memory program, which made funds available to digitize materials relating to the state’s ethnic groups. The collection is drawn from Calisphere’s content and also features more than 20,000 specially digitized primary sources from charter contributors. It documents California’s rich history of diversity and multicultural contributions.

off siteCDL/DPLA Content Hub Launch

On behalf of the UC Libraries and with the endorsement of the Council of University Librarians, the CDL is launching as a new Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) Content Hub. In its role as a DPLA Content Hub, CDL will be sharing metadata records from Calisphere, a website with approximately 250,000 digital primary source objects contributed by libraries, archives, and museums across the state -- including unique content from across the UC Libraries. CDL's launch as a Content Hub is supported with grant funding from DPLA and the National Endowment for the Humanities from March 2014-February 2015. To learn more, visit the CDL/DPLA Content Hub wiki.

Counting California

The Counting California web site provided users with a single interface for accessing a variety of data and statistics about California from local, state, and federal government agencies. It was decommissioned June 5, 2008.

Image Service Demonstrator Project

The Demonstrator Project was a development initiative and precursor to UC Shared Images. Using Luna Insight software, it built a demonstrator online service for the purpose of supporting research and teaching in the arts, humanities, and other disciplines that use surrogate images of works in architectural and the visual arts.

off siteJARDA

The Japanese American Relocation Archive (JARDA) is a digital thematic collection in Calisphere that documents the experience of Japanese Americans in World War II internment camps. Starting in 1998, the University of California has digitized thousands of images and documents on this subject, providing a single, easy-to-use entry point for anyone interested in this material.

External linkLocal History Digital Resources Project (LHDRP)

Supported by a Library Services and Technology Act grant administered by the California State Library and coordinated by the Califa Library Group, this multi-year project has provided a "solution in a box" for public, academic, and specialized libraries seeking to become conversant with developing digital primary resource collections. From 2001-2012, funded libraries have selected, scanned, and cataloged approximately 200 items each for publication through the OAC, Calisphere, and local websites. The digital assets are also maintained for the long-term in the CDL-managed Digital Preservation Repository. Over 90 institutions have participated in the LHDRP, and nearly 30,000 digital objects have been made publicly available and preserved for the long-term.

off siteMuseums and the Online Archive of California (MOAC)

In 1997, several California museums approached CDL with the idea of integrating access to collections of art, historical artifacts, photography, and manuscripts from museums, archives, and libraries throughout the state. With support from the Institute for Museum Library Services, the MOAC collaboration addressed several goals: testing the use of EAD for museum metadata to provide access to museum objects, integrating primary source materials access across institution types (libraries, archives and museums), and integrating item level description with collection level description.

OAC Redesign

In July 2009, DSC released a total redesign of the OAC interface informed by user feedback and community input. The new site helps researchers navigate the collections, contains several new features, and aggregates MARC and EAD records in the same system.

off siteUC Libraries Digital Collection (UCLDC) Implementation Project

The UC Libraries Digital Collection (UCLDC) Implementation Project is a collaborative initiative of the ten campus libraries that will result in a shared platform for managing and displaying selected digital resources. It will reveal the strength and breadth of the UC Libraries' combined digital collections to end-users, while providing a streamlined underlying technical infrastructure for campus libraries to manage and surface content. The implementation phase is a two-year project to install and configure a shared digital asset management system, harvest externally hosted content, and build a public interface. To learn more about the UCLDC, visit the project wiki.

Uncovering California's Environmental Collections

This project comprised a collaborative effort between nine UC and non-UC special collections and archival repositories, in coordination with the California Digital Library, to process and uncover hidden collections related to the state's environment and environmental history. The two-year project was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and administered by the Council for Library and Information Resources. The finding aids for the processed collections are now available through the OAC.

Last updated: July 06, 2016