Friday, September 30, 2011

More about and the power of open archives

This is a follow on to my post last March about one of the more fascinating panels I heard at SxSWi2011. I recently listened again to the presentation and took more complete notes.


Libraries, archives, museums, seeing a shift to making info available in different ways, allowing wider usage through a more open database structure."If you free your data, people will come to you."

  • Civil War 150
  • Philly History
    • 93,000 photos, 6,700 registered users, 13,000 visits per month
    • Syncs with GoogleEarth & GoogleMaps, and can favorite and share the images
    • Allows mashups! See HistoryPin, EveryBlockPhiladelphia
    • Allow public to submit error reports; vast majority were accurate!
  • National Archives Photo Mashup contest
Why? People WANT this information; it is a new way to engage with your community
Who? Historians, researchers, genealogists, enthusiasts
How? Innovation though collaboration, and through an open database structure.

Smithsonian: Joy's Law states that "No matter what business you're in, the smart people work somewhere else." This is unquestionably true in the digital age. Recognized that innovation needs to come from OUTSIDE the institution, that it is our job to open up and be catalysts. Archives can think of themselves as a platform for developers from outside the institution.

Issues: trust, control of the images, how to control commercial use.

No comments:

Post a Comment