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Showing posts from 2018


It's funny when you work in academics, and so many people assume you have summers off. Summers end up being the busiest time of the year for me for a few reasons. I may have less meetings with the 9 month contract faculty, but it's high time for projects. I normally have students who can work more hours, and that in turns means more time from me to keep things running.

This summer I have been working closely with the Kent Historical Society on a project to get their oral history collection online, over the past three years or so using interns from the Library Science program at KSU. We finally got the first batch up, after alot of work to capture and transfer digital files, make content descriptions and also work on transcriptions.

Here's the link to the collection at Ohio Memory: 

It's been amazing to work with the historical society- Alot of names that are familiar to me being a Kent native, and always …

Privacy and digital collections

This past October, I put in a book proposal on the topic of ethical decision-making around privacy issues in digital collections. It has been accepted by Morgan and Claypool, and I am cranking to meet a May 1st deadline to get this into print by November.

It's exciting, but also nerve-wracking and perhaps a little terrifying for a few reasons. Ethics is head space that I very much enjoy- This work will include a nod to an essay from Martin Heidegger, which oddly enough I used a different Heidegger essay in my museum studies MA thesis on the ethics of art conservation. The philosophy aspect in ethics is probably the most enjoyable part for me, but it's also unbelievably murky waters. I spent many years rejecting absolutes in my early twenties, though at some point I have to put the pen to the paper and just write. (Funny sidenote- This digital girl still prefers the analog. I write primarily on my laptop and then print out draft and edit by hand. I also hate, hate, hate e-book…

Accessibility requirements and digital collections

So, I have found recently it is possible to teach an old dog new tricks- For the first time in too long, I tackled an area that was completely new to me and have been diving into the world of accessibility requirements for digital objects. In part, this is coming as a response to a newer policy in place at Kent State addressing electronic and information technology accessibility.

Or for other digital librarians, a colleague at another university said "OCR'd PDFs just aren't going to cut it anymore". This statement I think reflects how many of us have practiced a simple approach to textual documents in the past. Batch run OCR before ingestion, and TADA! Done, or at least we had hoped.

But, as I have come to learn, this approach is does not fair well for screen readers or adapt for those with vision impairments. At Kent State, I've been fortunate to have some great folks in the Accessibility Office to offer advice and hands-on training (Thank you, Jason Piatt! My …