Showing posts with label digital information. Show all posts
Showing posts with label digital information. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Library of Congress to launch World Digital Library

This sounds like a worthy endeavor, doesn't it? As regular readers know, we've been digitizing a lot of photographs and a few books (available at the Internet Archive). Somehave had concernes that Google Books is too big - see "Google & the Future of Books," By Robert Darnton, New York Review of Books Volume 56, Number 2, February 12, 2009 and the Library's project seems like a good alternative. Here's the PR:

Library of Congress, UNESCO and Partners To Launch World Digital Library

The Library of Congress, UNESCO and 32 partner institutions on April 21 will launch the World Digital Library, a website that features unique cultural materials from libraries and archives from around the world.

The site will include manuscripts, maps, rare books, films, sound recordings, and prints and photographs – available unrestricted to the public and free of charge. The browseable, searchable site will function in seven languages and offer content in dozens of languages.

The launch will take place at a reception at UNESCO’s Paris headquarters co-hosted by UNESCO Director-General Ko├»chiro Matsuura and the Librarian of Congress, James H. Billington. Directors of numerous partner institutions will also be on hand to present the project to ambassadors, ministers, delegates, and special guests attending the semi-annual meeting of UNESCO’s executive board.

Dr. Billington first proposed the creation of a World Digital Library (WDL) to UNESCO in 2005, remarking that such a project could “have the salutary effect of bringing people together by celebrating the depth and uniqueness of different cultures in a single global undertaking.” In addition to promoting international understanding, the project aims to expand the volume and variety of cultural content on the Internet, provide resources for educators, scholars, and general audiences, and narrow the digital divide within and between countries by building capacity in partner countries.

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. It seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, programs and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich international resources will be available through the World Digital Library. Other resources can be found at the Library’s main website,, and via interactive exhibitions on a new, personalized website at

PR 09-70
ISSN 0731-3527

Thursday, February 5, 2009

NLM digitizes Journal of National Medical Association

PubMed Central Adds Historically Significant Journal of the National Medical Association (1909-2007) to Its Free Online Holdings

In celebration of Black History Month, the National Library of Medicine is pleased to announce an important addition to PubMed Central (PMC), its free digital archive of full-text journal articles: the complete archive of the Journal of the National Medical Association (JNMA), which observes its centennial this year. To see the archive, please visit:

The National Medical Association (NMA), established in 1895, is the largest and oldest national organization representing African American physicians and allied health professionals in the United States. The JNMA was published quarterly from 1909 to 1938, bimonthly from 1940 to 1977, and monthly since 1978. The archive currently represents over 77,000 digitized pages of issues, cover to cover, through 2007. Current content will be coming at a later date.

Since its founding, this landmark journal has enabled African American health professionals to keep current regarding the latest medical and public health practices, even in the face of segregation and discrimination. This archive provides historical insight into the social, medical and public health issues that continue to be of particular concern to African American patients and physicians. It has also served as a venue to challenge disparaging interpretations of African American health history published in other medical and social science journals. The collection is of great interest to U.S. and international researchers concerned with the societal impact of health care inequalities. Scholars seeking to understand the historic barriers faced by the African American patient and physician will find this collection to be an invaluable resource.

To learn more about PubMed Central, or to browse its contents, go to:

Michael J. North,
Head of Rare Books & Early Manuscripts
History of Medicine Division
National Library of Medicine
8600 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, MD 20894

(301) 496-9204 * fax (301) 402-0872

Monday, December 8, 2008

World War 1 records online in UK

Jeff also sent in this press release. Regular readers of this blog know that we've been putting WW1 books up on the Internet Archive and our Flickr sites. We've scanned thousands of images as well, but haven't figured out how to put them online yet. I like the family heirloom part of this site though.

The University of Oxford uses CONTENTdm(r) to digitise rare First World War resource collections

Birmingham, UK, 08 December 2008: The 90th anniversary of the Armistice sees The University of Oxford launch the final element of two remarkable online First World War archives that provide open access to an unrivalled database of primary source material as part of the JISC Digitisation Programme.

The University of Oxford's 'First World War Poetry' and 'Great War' Digital Archives hold over 7,000 and 6,500 digital images respectively and both use OCLC's CONTENTdm software to store, manage and make available online, these fabulous collections of highly valued materials.

The 'First World War Poetry Archive' builds on the success of the University's existing Wilfred Owen archive, already referenced by teachers and researchers worldwide. Highlights of the collection include poems, maps, letters and diaries from various eminent 'front line' poets. The works of Wilfred Owen, Edward Thomas, Robert Graves, Isaac Rosenberg, Vera Brittain and Roland Leighton appear alongside other contextual and teaching resources such as photographs, audio and film material.

In addition the University's 'Great War Archive' website brings together thousands of digital images of items submitted by members of the public. The majority of these images are of treasured family heirlooms which have never been on 'public display' until now.

Obviously due to the nature of these materials they were previously widely dispersed and in very fragile condition. They needed to be digitized in order to preserve, improve usability and widen access - delivering the collections digitally via the Web.

After assessing various solutions available, the University chose and implemented OCLC's CONTENTdm Digital Collection Management Software because of its flexibility as a system for the delivery of digital collections to the Web.

"We chose CONTENTdm as it best suited our requirements for customisation and the many ways in which data can be exported" explains Michael Loizou, Oxford University's Technical Lead.

Kate Lindsay, Oxford University's Project Leader expands "The Great War is arguably the most resonant period in modern British history. These memorabilia and poetry archives will provide easy access to an unrivalled collection of material which will be of use to anyone interested in getting closer to this world-changing conflict... One of the main reasons for building these archives with CONTENTdm is its versatility in the types of media that it can handle. Our requirements for these archives were very demanding. We invested time working with and customising CONTENTdm to meet these needs, that the system supports this is one of its main benefits."

Anyone interested in viewing these archives can do so by visiting