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Preservación digital: la comunidad profesional como base para su desarrollo

Gabriela Andaur Gómez

Gabriela Andaur Gómez

Last updated on 5 November 2019

Gabriela Andaur Gómez es Profesora Asistente, Facultad de Economía y Negocios, Universidad Alberto Hurtado, Consejera, Comité Memoria del Mundo – Chile (UNESCO) y Archivera, Proyecto de Modernización, Archivo Nacional de Chile


[English version follows]

Desde hace algunos años hemos visto como dentro de la comunidad profesional latinoamericana ha comenzado a instalarse la preocupación sobre la preservación digital. Este discurso ha comenzado a permear, aunque lentamente, en las instituciones archivísticas locales y las comunidades vinculadas al patrimonio documental. No obstante, falta mucho para generar conciencia sobre la fragilidad de los documentos en el entorno digital, de tal manera de pasar desde la comprensión del problema al avance en su solución.

Uno de los mayores problemas que enfrentamos es la parálisis. Estamos aprendiendo que la preservación digital es una tarea gigantesca y sin fin, que requiere recursos constantes (y superiores a los que solemos tener), la aplicación de estándares técnicos diversos a los que no siempre tenemos acceso, además de competencias distintas a las que hemos estado adquiriendo en nuestros programas de formación archivística.  ¿Cómo preservaremos nuestros documentos electrónicos si no tenemos claro cómo ni dónde empezar? ¿dónde obtendremos los recursos necesarios? ¿cómo nos capacitaremos? La problemática es tan compleja que el miedo y la parálisis son las primeras reacciones, y acabamos por no hacer nada al respecto.

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If you can’t start big, start small

Millard Schisler

Millard Schisler

Last updated on 4 November 2019

Millard Schisler is Adjunct Faculty for the Online Master’s in Museum Studies at Johns Hopkins University. He lives and works with Digital Preservation in Brazil


Millard 1

I have always liked the image of the three-dimensional sculpture figures created by artist Stephen Hansen as a way to illustrate the “trickle-down economics” of the Reagan era – it is pretty much self-explanatory as to the “distribution” of wealth.  This image also comes to my mind when I think of the international and national organizations that brand the need for digital preservation in their meetings and conferences and create manifestos and guidelines to steer us all. I am grateful for this work, and am not against these efforts and strategies, but many times these ideas seem to take a long time to trickle down to the bottom where everyday life is, much like this image.

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The crucial work of digitizing and publicizing Museum's collections as a way of preservation and spreading knowledge: the case of Museu Nacional/UFRJ

Cristiana Serejo

Cristiana Serejo

Last updated on 24 October 2019

Cristiana Serejo is Deputy Director at Museu Nacional/ Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro


Due to the great fire, which occurred in September 2018, the collection of the permanent exhibition, as well as part of the scientific collections, were lost. Despite the invaluable loss of historical objects and specimens, the institution has been invested in projects of preservation and digital recovery of its collections as a strategic action to safeguard and preserve collection data for future generations.

Founded in 1818, the National Museum (MNRJ) is the oldest scientific institution in Latin America. For more than two centuries the museum has been and is still a fundamental agent for the cultural and scientific development of the country. Nowadays, in addition to promoting scientific education and dissemination, the institution develops world-renowned research lines in the areas of anthropology, botany, zoology, geology and paleontology.

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Extracting Information from 5.25” Floppy Disks – Historic Environment Scotland

Freddie Alexander

Freddie Alexander

Last updated on 5 November 2019

Frederick Alexander is Digital Archivist at Historic Environment Scotland


The digital archive at Historic Environment Scotland comprises of 42 terabytes of digital materials. This archive, alongside its physical counterpart, contains information relating to the historic environment of Scotland. Scotland’s historic environment is the physical evidence of past human activity, from a prehistoric fort, to a Victorian garden, to a drawing of a cityscape. In this blog post I want to give an example of how we extracted and preserve at-risk digital materials, and in doing so developed our digital preservation skills.

In 2018 we received a deposit of operational records from Reiach and Hall Architects. Reiach and Hall was established in 1965 and has been responsible for the redevelopment of Dundee Council Civic Offices (Dundee), the University of St Andrews Medical Sciences Building (St Andrews), and the Scottish National Blood Transfusion (Edinburgh).This collection comprised of drawings, reports, and project files. There was an additional digital deposit, including seventeen 5.25 floppy disks. 

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Planning ahead for DVD-Video migration research

Kieran O'Leary

Kieran O'Leary

Last updated on 5 November 2019

Kieran O’Leary is Data and Digital Systems Manager at the Irish Film Institute in Dublin


In a moving image archive, there are many objects that can be classified as ‘at-risk’, so it’s hard to pick just one. The one that’s on my mind the most at the moment is optical media, mostly because of an upcoming project involving lots of optical media, specifically DVD-Video. This project is similar to the Loopline Project that resulted in us winning The National Archives Award for Safeguarding the Digital Legacy from the Digital Preservation Coalition. I would like to talk about how optical media became a major focus of this project, a little bit about format-bias, and outlining some of the research that we will have to do.

This project is supported by the wonderful Broadcasting Authority of Ireland Archiving Scheme, and one of the great things about it is that it allows us to focus on understanding formats and developing migration workflows.

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How to sell an archive

Alistair Goodall

Alistair Goodall

Last updated on 24 October 2019

Alistair Goodall is Head of IT for Crossrail Ltd in the UK


Last year we were the proud winners of a Digital Preservation Award for our Crossrail archive and I was lucky enough to experience the passion and enthusiasm for digital preservation at the awards ceremony.

Since then we have successfully closed down some of the applications associated with the early stages of our 10 year project (such as land acquisition and property access requests) and these are now available through our Crossrail archive.  The Crossrail project itself has, however, been delayed beyond December 2018 and we are in our most information intensive stage with testing, commissioning and certification underway.

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Sharing format preservation information and how this will benefit us all

Jon Tilbury

Jon Tilbury

Last updated on 7 November 2019

Jon Tilbury is CTO of Preservica, and is based in the UK


World Digital Preservation Day is all about the global community coming together to share ideas and collaborate. So how can we all work more closely on sharing format preservation information and what is the value of doing this?

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Email Monkey Magic

Matthew Addis

Matthew Addis

Last updated on 7 November 2019

Matthew Addis is Co-Founder and CTO of Arkivum based in the UK.


Email Monkey Magic

Email preservation is one of those areas that covers almost every digital preservation issue in the book.  This blog post describes my journey into the world of email preservation - what I learnt, what I did, and what we've now built into Arkivum's Perpetua solution.  To be honest, it did at times it feel more like the trials of Monkey in Journey to the West but I got to do some cool email magic on the way! 

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Augmenting the community, lowering the risk internationally

Antonio Guillermo Martínez Largo

Antonio Guillermo Martínez Largo

Last updated on 7 November 2019

Antonio G. Martinez is CEO & Founder of LIBNOVA and is based in Madrid, Spain


Last year in our guest blog post for the DPC we wrote about “Do you D.P.?” and we commented that there is no “DP yes or no, but, up to what level of DP can you go?”. This year the theme for World Digital Preservation Day is ‘At-Risk Digital Materials´.

As we mentioned last year, it was the less D.P. intense communities that were picking up the tune of the more energetic entities, at many levels. Over the last few years we have been sensing that the ‘At-Risk Digital Materials’ menace is being taken very seriously indeed by big and small cultural heritage institutions across the globe and that those international entities are picking up speed by their own accord. Many of these international entities are turning to other older and established associations to contrast their fears concerning digital preservation. They realise they are not alone on many issues; it is quite an international concern. And this takes me to another point.

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Deep Enough For Sharks

Sean Barker

Sean Barker

Last updated on 24 October 2019

Sean Barker is an Information Management Specialist 


I have an embarrassing admission to make. For years, part of me worked on the LOTAR project (1) developing preservation standards for Product Data Management (PDM), while another part was making those standards obsolete by creating an Integrated Design Environment. And I didn't connect the two parts together.

The first thing I should do is not explain PDM - it's too complex for a short blog and people shouldn't worry about it unless their project gets bigger than a team-of-teams (about eighty people). Think of PDM as provenance on steroids, where even a simple sign-off is backed up by a ten-volume procedures manual and where the people who sign the approvals must be approved to do so by an approved organization.

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