Focus on Materials Born Digital

Social Science Data Workshop

DLF organized and conducted a workshop on social science data at Princeton University in January 1999. Social science data managers from DLF institutions joined a variety of experts to examine the state of the art in three areas: the discovery and retrieval of databases, the evaluation and interpretation of alternative data sources, and data extraction for analysis and presentation. Speakers included prominent faculty in the field, such as Gary King, of Harvard; Richard Rockwell, of the Inter-university Consortium for Political Science Research (ICPSR); and Daniel Greenstein, of the Arts and Humanities Data Service in the United Kingdom. Participants identified a set of activities that the DLF can undertake to advance the state of the art in these three areas with the goal of improving the use of social science databases in the undergraduate curriculum. The workshop report ( outlines an agenda for action that includes the following:

Guides to Quality in Visual Resource Imaging

The DLF, CLIR, and RLG have created an editorial board of experts to review the state of the art in visual resource imaging and to identify technologies and practices that can be documented and recommended to the community. The board decided to focus on documenting the science of imaging; that is, some of the objective measures of image qualities, such as color, tone, and resolution, and how they can be controlled in various aspects of an imaging process. It identified five areas in which to address these issues: setting up an imaging project, selecting a scanner, creating a scanning system, producing a digital master, and generating digital derivatives. Board members created detailed outlines for guides in these areas and suggested authors, whom DLF and CLIR commissioned to write the guides. The guides will be published on the RLG Web site in late 1999.

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