As part of our summer tchnology explortion grant Susan and I attended curate camp, an un-conference that grew out of code4lib.
The sessions that were proposed focused on data management and curation for the most part. In contrast Susan and I have focused on data use and data-focused research methods. It was interesting to see the perspectives of librarians and archivists whose job it is to ensure ongoing access to and storage of data. The types of data discussed included everything from images of disks file systems to digital media to research data.
Despite the broad range of data/media discussed there were common issues that bubbled up – how to ensure long term preservation both in terms of bit-checking and format conversion, seeking out new collaborative opportunities with faculty and researchers, and creating systems to enable acquisition and dissemination of data.
A number of institutions we heard from are already dealing with large digital objects (300gb video files), born digital collections (disks and other media), and multiple institutional collaborations (lockss, Duracloud). There was also an interesting discussion surrounding the management and acquisition of scientific research data. One science data librarian discussed a digital lab notebook called Omero and widened the presentation into a discussion about a new suite of ‘research services’ that libraries can support. We also heard briefly about project Bamboo (http://www.projectbamboo.org/), a Mellon funded project to support research data management in the humanities.
These sorts of projects are in sync with the work that Susan and I have been doing this summer to identify and explore data research tools and certainly hints at a need for libraries to help support them.
More to come from the camp. As I write this there is an interesting discussion about metadata standards and systems in progress.