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  1. British Library

  2. California Digital Library

  3. Carnegie Mellon University

  4. Columbia University

  5. Cornell University

  6. Council on Libraries and Information Resources

  7. Dartmouth College

  8. Emory University

  9. Harvard University

  10. Indiana University

  11. Johns Hopkins University

  12. Library of Congress

  13. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  14. National Archives and Records Administration

  15. New York Public Library

  16. New York University

  17. North Carolina State University

  18. Pennsylvania State University

  19. Princeton University

  20. Rice University

  21. Stanford University

  22. University of California, Berkeley

  23. University of Chicago

  24. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

  25. University of Michigan

  26. University of Minnesota

  27. University of Pennsylvania

  28. University of Southern California

  29. University of Tennessee

  30. University of Texas at Austin

  31. University of Virginia

  32. University of Washington

  33. Yale University


  1. Online Computer Library Center

  2. Research Libraries Group

  3. Coalition for Networked Information

  4. Los Alamos National Laboratory Research Library


Please send the DLF Director your comments or suggestions.

Digital Library Federation Fall Forum
Albuquerque, New Mexico
17-19 November 2003


Participants in the Digital Library Federation’s 2003 Fall Forum heard Michael Keller announce a decision by the DLF Steering Committee to create something first envisioned at the DLF’s advent in 1995—a collaborative digital library providing wide electronic access to collections in multiple institutions. As chair of the Steering Committee, Mr. Keller explained that the groundwork for a "distributed open digital library" had been laid by a range of achievements by DLF members and others in the intervening years.

Many such achievements were in evidence at the Forum, attended by approximately 160 participants in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on November 17 through 19. Session presenters reported progress on tools and architectures for digital library work, on electronic resource management and preservation, and on understanding user needs and e-scholarship requirements.

Discoveries reported at the Forum were not all technical. Digital librarians from the University of Washington recounted what they learned from a retreat with faculty members who experiment with digital media in scholarship and teaching. Scholars at the retreat spoke enthusiastically of ways in which electronic technologies make possible new kinds of scholarship and more rapid communication of results than print permits, but expressed needs for technical training, for information security, and for credit for e-scholarship in promotion and tenure decisions. Out of the retreat came proposals that the library create a center for digital scholarship to provide support services—and that the university create a degree-granting institute to support and study digital scholarship.

Several sessions provided updates on efforts to ensure the long-term preservation of digital resources including e-scholarship. Without better preservation methods, problems with unstable media, system obsolescence, format proliferation, and Web site abandonment could jeopardize the future usefulness of the wealth of digital resources now being created. 

Representatives of the Library of Congress described steps to implement a Congressionally-approved and funded plan for a National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program, which has developed an architectural model for federated digital preservation and, in early 2004, will fund preservation research proposals from partnering institutions. Researchers at the Library of Congress also reported on evaluating the long-term sustainability of various digital formats.

Representatives of Stanford University described plans for implementation in 2004 of a preservation system called LOCKSS (for "Lots Of Copies Keep Stuff Safe"), in which participating libraries will maintain identical digital content (initially e-journals) in "caches" that can check on and, when necessary, replenish each other. Efforts also were described to integrate proxy servers with LOCKSS so that users can retrieve from LOCKSS caches material that becomes unavailable from publishers, and to incorporate within LOCKSS such complex material from the humanities as "hyper fiction." Other preservation sessions described work on transferring digital material to repositories, on keeping Web sites usable, and on preserving digital videos.

Concerning digital resource management, the Forum included reports of progress in the DLF E-Resource Management Initiative, which is determining what functionality and metadata are required to enable librarians to manage electronic resources over time. Developments also were described in the "LibData" system to improve management of and retrieval from large databases of digital resources, in "NAND," a tool for searching and browsing collections of data via the World Wide Web, and in the Data Extraction Web Interface System (DEWI), containing a suite of tools for processing, preserving, and delivering numeric data from social science collections.

In other sessions, representatives of the University of Chicago described their use of Greenstone digital library software to create a digital collection of musical scores, the "Chopin Early Editions." Representatives of Cornell discussed their development of a new system for finding digital materials. And participants heard an update on "Fedora"—for "Flexible Extensible Digital Object Repository Architecture"—through which repositories manage and deliver digital content of multiple kinds, an explanation of the use of Digital Item Declaration Language to represent objects in digital repositories, an analysis of metadata issues involved in "capturing" large digital archives, and a report on creation of a Union Catalog of Art Images. Also updates were presented on two National Science Digital Library projects and on electronic resource services under development by the Research Libraries Group and the Online Computer Library Center.

In the plenary session at which Mr. Keller announced plans to create a distributed open digital library—tentatively abbreviated as DODL—he explained that it would provide global access to collections from multiple institutions without assembling those collections in one place. The DODL will begin with publicly-accessible materials in the humanities and social sciences, and will incorporate numerous service layers, including an extensive finding service. Mr. Keller identified the next steps as raising money for aspects of the DODL and appointing a DODL coordinator on the DLF staff (but not necessarily in the DLF’s Washington headquarters), a collections development working group to plan content development, and a technical working group to develop an enabling infrastructure. As plans unfold, more information will be made available on the DLF Web site: www.diglib.org. Mr. Keller made the further announcement that the Steering Committee had recently decided to open DLF membership to libraries abroad that are prominent in digital library development.

David Seaman, the DLF’s director, concluded the Forum by announcing that the 2004 Forums will be in New Orleans in the spring and Baltimore in the fall. Forum information will be posted on the DLF Web site. Individual sessions at the Albuquerque Forum are summarized more fully under subject-matter headings below.


"The National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP)."
Laura Campbell and Clay Shirky, Strategic Initiatives, Library of Congress

Ms. Campbell and Mr. Shirky reported on the status of the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program, led by the Library of Congress. The goal of NDIIPP is to develop a nationwide collection and preservation strategy for digital materials in cooperation with the information and technology industry, concerned federal agencies, libraries, research institutions, and non-for-profit entities. In 2002, the Congress appropriated $100 million for the program, of which $5 million supported a plan that drew widely on expertise from outside the library and has been approved by five Congressional committees. The library will now use an additional portion of the appropriation to collaborate with the National Science Foundation in funding research through a call for proposals that will result in cooperative agreements early in 2004.

The program has solicited partners to help collect digital content, focusing on at-risk content in various formats, and on public-policy as well as cultural materials, for a test bed for use in investigating existing archiving approaches. Part of the Congressional appropriation must be matched; the library is looking for matching for content development, standards and tools for network partners, and preservation business models. The program has developed and revised a technical architecture and drafted a technical test plan. The program’s Architectural Model for Federated Digital Preservation builds on existing work and uses a modular approach with minimal requirements at each level. Recognizing that different institutions have different functions and different metadata requirements, the program is working on a metadata transfer format that will lower transaction costs among institutions. Comments are requested on the latest version of the architecture model, which is available at www.digitalpreservation.org.

"LOCKSS Implementation: Technology, Collections, and Access".
Tom Robertson, LOCKSS Program, Stanford University; Perry Willett, Library Electronic Text Resource Service, Indiana University; and Martin Halbert, Library Systems, Emory University.

Mr. Robertson outlined the technology, current status, and next steps of the preservation program called LOCKSS, which stands for Lots of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe. The program, headquartered at Stanford, recognizes that the traditional preservation role of libraries is diminishing because in the digital era they lease rather than purchase such scholarly resources as journals. To prevent losses through library budget cuts or the demise of publishers, LOCKSS maintains connections among multiple libraries that agree to maintain caches of the same content so that they can check on and, if needed, replenish each other. Thus, under arrangements worked out with publishers, back issues of e-journals to which libraries subscribe can be preserved for use like printed issues preserved by libraries on their shelves. Large commercial publishers may be reluctant to participate in LOCKSS but many others are enthusiastic about its potential. LOCKSS will go into production in 2004.

Mr. Halbert described efforts at Emory University to integrate proxy servers with LOCKSS so that users can retrieve material in LOCKSS caches when the material is unavailable from publishers.

Mr. Willett, noting that LOCKSS is now focused on journals in science, technology, and medicine, described efforts of a task force that is working on incorporating into LOCKSS material from the humanities, such as literary journals and "hyper fiction," in which the design may be as important as the words, making the material hard to "harvest." Next steps in this effort to incorporate the humanities will be proposed in a grant application to the National Endowment for the Humanities in 2004.

The panelists discussed safeguards for preventing unauthorized access to LOCKSS caches, and factors that make the system affordable. But they cautioned against any monolithic, homogeneous preservation solution, believing that multiple, cooperative approaches are needed. More information is available at http://lockss.stanford.edu.

"Digital Formats: Factors for Sustainability, Functionality, and Quality."
Caroline Arms and Carl Fleischhauer, Office of Strategic Services, Library of Congress

Ms. Arms and Mr. Fleischhauer described work at the Library of Congress on a planning framework for identifying and documenting digital content formats that are promising (and unpromising) for long-term sustainability. The result will help staff evaluate and sustain material created digitally for inclusion in the library’s collections. Initially, the project is focusing on four "easy" categories: still images, audio, video, and text. Other format categories, including evolving categories, will be evaluated as the work proceeds.

The project looks at two types of evaluation factors. First are sustainability factors for evaluating the cost and feasibility of format preservation. These factors include the extent to which documentation is disclosed, a format is widely adopted, underlying information is transparent, metadata is embedded, a format has external dependencies, format content is inhibited by patents, and technical protection mechanisms prevent preservation. Second are quality and functionality factors that affect current and future usefulness. These vary according to content type. The work has included defining "format," studying format types and relationships, developing format description documents, and dealing with "content states," ranging from creation through publication to distribution. Tentatively, "middle-state" formats seem better for preservation than "initial state" and "final state" formats, but challenges to that preference exist. As the format analysis continues, the developers encourage outside commentary in response to documents available at http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/techdocs/digform.

"Digital Object Format Validation".
Stephen L. Abrams, Digital Library Program, Harvard University Library

Mr. Abrams described progress on JHOVE, which stands for JSTOR/Harvard Object Validation Environment. JHOVE is under development through collaboration between JSTOR, a journal archive, and the Harvard University Library to automate procedures by which repositories can identify, validate, and characterize digital objects. Repositories need means of answering these questions: "I have a digital object; what format is it?" "I have an object purportedly of format F; is it?" "I have an object of format F; what are its salient properties?" Formats have to be understood if repositories are to do more than save content in the form in which they receive it. JHOVE is useful in creating "significant information packages" (SIPs) that combine digital objects with metadata for transfer to repositories. For more information on this continuing project, including documentation in a "tutorial/user manual," visit http://hul.harvard.edu/jhove.

"California Digital Library’s Digital Preservation Program and a Look at Web Archiving".
Patricia Cruse, Digital Preservation Program, California Digital Library

Ms. Cruse reported on a digital preservation program inaugurated last year by the California Digital Library in partnership with the University of California’s libraries. The program focuses on identifying methods to preserve and persistently manage e-journals, on establishing a preservation repository for content created or managed by University of California libraries, and on evaluating methods for gathering and persistently managing Web based materials. For more information contact patricia.cruse@ucop.edu

"Preservation-Worthy Digital Video, or, How to Drive Your Library into Chapter 11".
Jerry McDonough, Digital Library Team, New York University 

Mr. McDonough provided an overview of an effort at New York University to establish "best practices" for archiving digital video. He discussed characteristics of digital video, abstract requirements for preservation-worthy digital video, and costs of creating and maintaining a large-scale digital video archive. For more information contact jerome.mcdonough@nyu.edu.


"The DLF E-Resource Management Initiative (ERMI): Project Report".
Tim Jewell, University of Washington; Ivy Anderson, Harvard University; Adam Chandler, Cornell University; Sharon Farb and Angelea Riggio, UCLA; Kimberly Parker, Yale University; and Nathan Robertson, The Johns Hopkins University.

The panel explained that the informal goal of the DLF’s E-Resource Management Initiative is to promote the growth and development of vendor and local e-resource management systems and services. Libraries of all types face the challenge of managing electronic resources over time. This initiative asks what functionality and metadata are required to support persistent e-resource management. Fruits of the initiative are the first comprehensive schema, data model, and tools specifically designed to address electronic resources. An additional report on achievements will be ready by the DLF’s spring 2004 Forum. More information is available at http://www.diglib.org/standards/dlf-erm02.htm.

"LibData: a Library Web Management System".
Paul Bramscher, Shane Nackerud, and John Butler, Digital Library Development Laboratory, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Presenters from the University of Minnesota Libraries described work there on a system to allow easier management of and more rapid retrieval from a large database of both leased and freely available digital resources. LibData, as the system is called, offers page-authoring tools (useful to both novice and expert librarian-users) that are integrated with the main database, making resource management easier to control, and assuring that library users receive predictable and up-to-date information. LibData also features a staff management system, user and page statistics, and complete customizability and extensibility. Work continues on expanding the system’s functionality and user services. More information is available at http://plato.lib.umn.edu/.    

"NAND: A New Tool for an Old Problem".
Charles Blair, Elisabeth Long, and Keith Waclena, Digital Library Development Center, University of Chicago Library

Presenters from the University of Chicago Library reported on development there of a lightweight, versatile tool for searching and browsing collections of data, including bibliographic data, via the World Wide Web. "NAND: A Non-Relational Database" is a generic tool for meeting data-indexing and presentation needs and allows customization by relatively non-technical staff to meet individual project requirements. Benefits will include better staff deployment, better data analysis, and faster launching of projects. Public release will come in 2004. For more information contact Mr. Blair at chas@uchicago.edu or Ms. Long at elong@uchicago.edu.


"Update on the Fedora Open-Source Project".
Sandy Payette, Cornell University

Ms. Payette described features of and demonstrated an open-source version of the Flexible Extensible Digital Object Repository Architecture (Fedora), now available through a continuing collaboration between Cornell Information Science and the University of Virginia Library. Fedora is a digital object repository system for managing and delivering digital content of multiple kinds. This system can provide a foundation for institutional repositories, preservation management systems, digital asset management systems, content management systems, and digital libraries. Fedora may be downloaded from http://www.fedora.info.

"MPEG-21 DIDL, the OAI-PMH, and the OpenURL as Building Blocks for Storing and Disseminating Complex Digital Objects."
Jeroen Bekaert, Patrick Hochstenbach, and Herbert Van de Sompel of the Prototyping Team of the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Research Library.

Members of the team described major characteristics of the MPEG-21 Digital Item Declaration Language (DIDL) and its usefulness for the representation of digital objects in the research library of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and, potentially, in other digital libraries. They also described a repository architecture under development at the laboratory in which DIDL-conforming documents are the units of storage. For more information contact herbertv@lanl.gov.   


"Responding to Digital Data Needs: the DEWI System".
Ron Nakao and Chris Bourg, Green Library, Stanford University

Mr. Nakao and Mr. Bourg described the development and future possibilities of the Data Extraction Web Interface System (DEWI), which is a suite of tools for processing, preserving, and delivering numeric data from Stanford’s social science collection. DEWI’s primary goal is to create an easy-to-use, platform-independent "one-stop-shop" for data discovery and extraction. Through DEWI, users can browse, search, and customize subsets of data for downloading in personal computers in a variety of formats. Also through DEWI, research teams can access, control, and archive data they collect before releasing it for public use. Broader collaborative efforts involving DEWI are under exploration. Future directions include increasing the DEWI dataset holdings, enhancing DEWI functionality, and facilitating the classroom use of DEWI. For more information, contact Ron Nakao at rombo@stanford.edu.

"Building Collections with Greenstone Digital Library Software".
Tod Olson, Digital Library Development Center, University of Chicago Library

 Mr. Olson described the launching in 2003 of a digital collection of musical scores called "Chopin Early Editions" at the University of Chicago Library. A knowledgeable and active user community helped develop the collection, whose creators found the Greenstone digital library system amenable to their needs. Ongoing work is planned both with Greenstone and with the Chopin collection. More information is available at http://www/lib.uchicago.edu/dldc/talks/2003/dlf-greenstone/, at http://www.greenstone.org/, and at http://www.chopin.lib.uchicago.edu/.  


"Metadata Tradeoffs in High-Production Digitization Environments".
Nancy J. Hoebelheinrich, Academic Information Resources, Stanford University Libraries

Ms. Hoebelheinrich described projects at Stanford that explore the question of how much metadata is really necessary and practicable for identifying, selecting, rendering, and reconstructing digital resources. What are the tradeoffs between creating more and better metadata and creating more high-quality digital objects? Stanford is dealing with such questions in developing metadata models in projects such as the on-site "capture" of the GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) Archive at the World Trade Organization. Thousands of pages of material are being incorporated into the Stanford Digital Repository. Ms. Hoebelheinrich explained assumptions of the work and how it is dealing with these tradeoff questions: What is "just enough" metadata? What does it mean to have a "preservation repository?" Who gets to make their workflow "efficient"? More information is available at http://gatt-archive.standford.edu.

"The Union Catalog of Art Images (UCAI): Aggregating and Standardizing Diverse Legacy Metadata". Esme Cowles and Linda Barnhart, Union Catalog of Art Images, University of California, San Diego

Mr. Cowles and Ms. Barnhart reported on progress and problems in their effort to create a Union Catalog of Art Images, which will be a bibliographic utility for sharing metadata in the visual resources community. UCAI is in effect a union catalog of metadata primarily for catalogers, who now are redundantly cataloging art images and other cultural heritage materials. Participants in the project are attempting to combine different data sets, provided by the Cleveland Museum of Art, Harvard University, and the University of California, San Diego, into a prototype database under a common standard. Believing that standardization is the image community’s greatest need, the project’s developers are struggling to reconcile different ways of describing objects, of presenting dates, of spelling names, etc., while trying to make it possible for catalogers to edit for their own systems. This research and development project has reached the end of its first phase—creation of a prototype union database. More partners and more metadata will be sought in phase two. More about UCAI is available at http://gort.ucsd.edu/ucai.


"Digital Scholarship in the Academy: What Scholars Need".
Ann Lally and Anne Graham, Digital Initiatives, University of Washington Libraries

Ms. Lally and Ms. Graham described the results of a retreat at the University of Washington in which scholars, librarians, and others involved with digital scholarship—that is, academic work in digital media—met to discuss two questions: what are scholars’ needs and wants regarding digital scholarship, collections, and technology, and what strategies should the University of Washington take to advance such scholarship and learning?  Participants lauded e-scholarship for such things as easing access, knowledge synthesis, interaction with other scholars, feedback on work, and the merger of scholarship with teaching. But they also expressed e-scholarship concerns about information security, intellectual property protection, credibility and authenticity of digital information, long-term preservation, lack of computer literacy, requirements for technological knowledge, lack of institutional recognition of e-scholarship for promotion and tenure, and the inability of network interaction to replace human interaction.

Participants expressed needs for, among other things, an institutional e-scholarship repository, tools for research and teaching including open source tools, information on others doing digital work, integration between campus libraries and campus computing, rights-management solutions, quality control, and a distinction between having work published and having it distributed. After many other observations, the participants called for a center for digital scholarship as a support service within the library and also a faculty driven, degree granting institute for digital scholarship to study e-scholarship and support its creation. A report on the outcome of the retreat is available on the Web site of the University of Washington Libraries at http://www.lib.washington.edu/digitalscholar/.

"The Evolution of an Interface from the User Perspectives: from End User Testing to a Usage Log Analysis".
Sarah Chandler, University Library, Cornell University

Ms. Chandler reported on the creation of a new system called "Find Articles / Find Databases / Find e-Journals," which in 2003 replaced Cornell’s "e-Reference Collection" system. Reasons for the change included the library’s need for new functionality for searching and its need to migrate to a new server. Among other things, the new system can search at the article level across multiple databases. The system has benefited from usability testing, feedback from focus groups, which helped identify databases with connection problems, and a usage log analysis. The project’s leaders have learned that data sources are complicated, that extensive scripting and parsing are required, and that documenting analysis is necessary for developing methodology. The project’s next steps will include query string analysis, research on search errors and what happens when a user gets zero hits, and further research on a "Find It at Cornell" service. For more information, contact sy82@cornell.edu.


"National Science Digital Library (NSDL) Projects Update: the OCKHAM Library Network".
Martin Halbert, Library Systems, Emory University

Mr. Halbert reported on achievements by the OCKHAM working group, which has been sponsored by the DLF to analyze commonalities in digital library architectures and possibilities for future interoperability among digital library systems. The OCKHAM partners are Emory University, Virginia Tech, the University of Arizona, Notre Dame University, and (soon) Oregon State University. The group is working on reference model, middleware, and test-bed services development. Mr. Halbert invited persons interested in reviewing or contributing to development of the reference model to contact him at mhalber@emory/.edu. More information is available in 2003 at http://ockham.library.emory.edu, and in 2004 at http://www.ockham.org.

"Adding Value to NSDL: a Business Proposition and Service Enhancement".
Laine Farley, Digital Library Services, California Digital Library

Ms. Farley described work to add value to the National Science Digital Library by integrating it with academic libraries. She discussed recommendations for a sustainable business model and plans to build a prototype service that would integrate the NSDL with larger science collections and include possibilities for customization. More information is available at www.cdlib.org/inside/projects/metasearch/nsdl.


"Data Mining Library Collection Silos: Print Books and E-Books in Library Collections".
Lynn Silipigni Connaway, Office of Research, Online Computer Library Center (OCLC)

Ms. Connaway described an OCLC project to use its WorldCat database, containing more than 50 million bibliographic records, to identify printed books that have electronic editions and where they are. Electronic editions are increasing as libraries digitize printed materials that they are moving into remote storage. Data about digitized books across institutions and within collections can help library decision makers make usage and cost comparisons of print and electronic resources and analyze digitization and preservation processes, organization, retrieval systems, services, and collection management. Libraries will be able to reduce redundancies in digitizing works and integrate print and digital materials effectively to meet user expectations. Research is planned to establish accepted criteria for defining e-books apart from p-books, to identify and compare types of library holdings and subjects for p-books and e-books, and to identify types of content and materials that are better suited for the print or the digital environment. For more information, contact connawal@oclc.org.

"From Aggregation to Commerce: the Next Phase for the RLG Cultural Materials Alliance".
Ricky Erway, Digital Resources, Research Libraries Group (RLG)

Ms. Erway reviewed the status of work by the Research Libraries Group and institutions in the Cultural Materials Alliance on aggregating digitized special collections to make them more accessible and affordable for teaching and research. The alliance now involves 85 collections from 53 institutions. She explained that the next phase of this initiative will have goals such as these: reaching new audiences, providing broader awareness of and access to institutions’ special collections, and testing the waters of commercial licensing.  More information is available at http://www.rlg.org/culturalres/.

Plenary Presentation

A rose is a rose by any other name; what's a DODL?
Michael Keller, Academic Information Resources, Stanford University

As chair of the Digital Library Federation (DLF), Mr. Keller reported on recent actions by its Steering Committee. These included a decision to expand the DLF’s horizons by inviting qualified libraries from abroad to join. Also, the Steering Committee decided to proceed with collaborative creation of a distributed open digital library, tentatively called DODL, stemming from goals set when the DLF first formed in 1995, and now becoming possible through work done subsequently by DLF members. Mr. Keller explained that the DODL would provide global access to distributed collections without assembling everything in one place, and would include numerous service layers, including an extensive finding service. The DODL’s developers will maintain contact with parallel efforts in the United States, such as the National Science Digital Library, and abroad, such as the Superstar Digital Library in China. The next steps in development of the DODL, starting now, Mr. Keller said, will be to raise money and to appoint a coordinator on staff (but not necessarily in the DLF’s D.C. headquarters), a collections development working group to plan content development, and a technical working group to develop an enabling infrastructure. The DODL will start with public-domain materials in the humanities and social sciences. More information is available on the DLF Web site: www.diglib.org

Special Group Discussions

The Forum included several "Birds of a Feather Sessions" for group discussions of specialized topics. These dealt with UNICODE, led by Elizabeth Beaudin of Yale University; persistent identifiers, led by John Kunze of the California Digital Library; Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) issues, led by Perry Willet of the University of Indiana; Metadata Encoding and Transmission Standard (METS) issues, led by Jerry McDonough of New York University; and Global Digital Format Registry issues, led by Mackenzie Smith of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Also there were meetings of the Electronic Resource Management Group, the E-Resources Management Initiative Steering Committee, and the DLF Developers Forum.  

Closing Remarks
David Seaman, Digital Library Federation

In closing the Forum, DLF Director David Seaman talked of the value of communications within the Federation. The simplest way by which members can consult with each other and the staff, he said, is through the listserv—DLF Announce—which is working well. He also encouraged DLF member to contact him personally about any matter in which he might be of use.

Additionally, Mr. Seaman explained how initiatives get started within the DLF. Usually, he said, people who think of something needed simply propose to work on it within the umbrella of DLF, which can move quickly on such proposals. New initiatives include efforts to articulate good practices in digital production and to survey what has been learned from the first round of Open Archives Initiative activities.

Mr. Seaman also made some announcements. A survey of various digital library aggregation services will be published on the Web soon and in print after the new year. The next DLF Forum will be in New Orleans in the spring of 2004, followed by a fall forum in Baltimore. Suggestions are invited for a location off the East Coast for the spring 2005 forum. Mr. Seaman also invited feedback on how the DLF’s forums might be improved.

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Copyright © 2004 by the Digital Library Federation