Cloud Computing for Library Services

Saturday, June 26, 2010

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Washington Convention Center – 143A

 

Twitter hashtag – #litacloud

 

This session was presented as a panel discussion followed by a lightning round followed by another panel discussion. Some of the panelists included:

 

Marshall Breeding, Vanderbilt

Karen Coombs, OCLC

Terry Reese, Oregon State University


 

Cloud computing: characteristics

 

NIST Definition – http://csrc.nist.gov/groups/SNS/cloud-computing/

on-demand self-service

broad network access

resource pooling

rapid elasticity

measured services

 

Gartner definition

service based

uses internet technologies

shared

scalable and elastic

metered by use

 

Cloud computing is not merely a delivery method.

 

Cloud based software-as-a-service

software delivered via the cloud

 

Cloud based platform-as-a-service

platforms (LAMP stack, Ruby on Rails stack, etc.) delivered via the web

 

Cloud based infrastructure-as-a-service

 

www.heroku.com – Heroku provides an online development/testing platform

Requires a Ruby on Rails application that you’re uploading.

Heroku is using Amazon’s online services as the infrastructure for their own platform as service.

 

Marshall Breeding, Vanderbilt University

 

Continuum of Abstraction

Locally owned and installed servers

Co-located servers

Co-located virtual servers

Web hosting

Server hosting services

Application service provider

Software as-a-service

Platform-as-a-service

 

Cloud computing – formal definitions

Highly abstracted computing model

Utility model

Provisioned on demand

Scaled according to variable needs

Discrete virtual machines

Compute cycles on demand

Storage on demand

Elastic – consumption of resources can grow and contract on demand

 

Hosting Services

Web Hosting

Web site only

Standard support for PHP, Perl, and other dynamic page generation

Dedicated Server

Appropriate for applications that have not been tested and deployed in a virtual environment

 

Advantages

Increasing opportunities to eliminate local servers and tech support

All of Serials Solutions’ offerings are delivered as software-as-a-service

 

Liblime

Liblime Enterprise Koha deployed in Amazon EC2

LAMP stack implemented on Virtual Machine Image

Ability to meet larger site requirements through high-performance cloud-delivered platform

 

Karen Coombs, OCLC

 

Cloud, Community, Collaboration

 

Collaboration in the Cloud

Infrastructure and tools exist to facilitate better collaboration across libraries

Beak down boundaries between developers in different libraries

Infrastructure alone is not enough. We have to change the ways libraries collaborate.

 

Transparency and the Cloud

Documentation of cloud application’s infrastructure and capabilities

Web services to as many aspects of the application as possible

Standards based systems (web standards, not library standards)

Blackboxes in the cloud diminish the real power of the cloud – collaborative innovation

 

Software in the Cloud

Ability to develop in potentially a device and platform independent way

computers, smart phones, single-purpose devices like e-readers

Creates opportunity for geater scalability

Relives the burden of installation and updates

Shared software, libraries, and infrastructure

Don’t have to develop all of these core services locally

 

Software Development and the Cloud

Cooperative development

Open source projects have been doing this for some time

Shared development effort

Ability for institutions and individuals to participate in different ways

Crowd Sourcing

Testing

Coding

Systems are designed in a modular fashion to allow developers to extend them.

 

Terry Reese, Oregon State University

 

Moving Library IT to “International Waters”

 

International waters – the idea that in some environments, a completely different set of rules apply.

 

Shared IT Resources Are Hard

IT resources (staff and hardware) represent a finite and expensive resource

Disks are cheap until you get a lot of them

Server cycles are expensive because they are finite within a given infrastructure

Possibly the biggest barrier is organizational

While projects will have multiple partners, one partner has the responsibility for managing and support the infrastructure.

 

With cloud computing you can move the project outside the organizational bureaucracy and into international waters where projects can function unencumbered.

 

With freedom comes options:

Add new partners at will

Partners determine how resources are managed; if you change you mind, that’s fine.

Allows a project to “think bigger” because most cloud resources will scale almost at will.

 

DuraCloud – DuraSpace

A hosted service and open technology to help organizations and end users effectively utilize public cloud services.

Built upon existing cloud services.

The service can work on Amazon, Atmos, Sun, Rackspace, and other cloud services.

LOCKSS in the cloud based on DuraCloud.

 

Chronopolis Project – designed primarily as a preservation storage system

Chronopolis Tools also monitors files and does auditing.

IRODS

 

TerraPod – digital video library

Allows you to outsource upload and data creation to the creators of the content.

 

Disadvantages

Data in the cloud – loss of control

Terms of service

API lag

Varying support

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I don’t care if you are Apple, I still want good service.

I finally talked myself into getting a new Mac. I haven’t owned a Mac or even had regular access to a current one for over a decade. I have an upcoming project that will be Mac-based, and I wanted to get a jump start on relearning the operating system. I could really benefit from the purported 10-hour battery life when I’m at conferences. Also, I just wanted to know what it was like to drive a Mac again. Since there were rumors of an upcoming refresh to the MacBook line, I was watching with interest to see what new features would be unveiled. I must admit to being taken aback by the fact that the brand spankin’ new 13” MacBook Pro doesn’t sport one of the new Core i5 or i7 processors that the 15” and 17” received. Most unfortunate, that. But after convincing myself, the next thing was to see if the store actually had one.

So Tuesday morning, after we knew that the things were official, I called the nearest Apple Store (Saddle Creek in Germantown, TN – about an hour and 45 minutes away) to see if they had any in stock. They wouldn’t answer their phone. At this point, I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. After all, new products had just been announced, so perhaps they were slammed with hordes of the Apple faithful all looking for the latest in Mac gadgetry. Since that didn’t work out, I tried chatting online with an Apple store rep. The rep told me that he couldn’t check inventories at individual stores, so my only option was to just keep calling.

I called back later that afternoon and finally found out that they didn’t have any of the new MacBooks, and they didn’t know when they’d be getting them. Well that was a disappointment. Wait, try again another day.

Wednesday. I called Wednesday morning to see if they had received the new MacBooks. Second verse – same as the first verse. Even though the Apple Store at Saddle Creek opens at 10:00 a.m., by 10:30 they still weren’t answering the telephone. Grrrrr. Finally sometime after lunch I was able to talk to a person who told me that they had received the 15” and 17” models, but not the 13”. Try again tomorrow.

Thursday. I called again. Would you believe that an hour after the store opens, they still don’t have anyone answering phones? I should mention here that I didn’t just call once over the last three mornings. I called several times. I should also mention that once selecting the option to speak with a rep, there were no more phone tree menus to navigate. The phone just rang . . . and rang . . . and rang. No one answered. I was annoyed

I started up another chat with an Apple store rep, and I explained the situation. I told her that people at the Saddle Creek store just won’t answer the phone in the morning, and I asked if she could have someone from that store call me. She explained that she couldn’t, but then gave me temporary hope by asking if I was trying to check inventory at the store. I said, “yes,” and she replied, “One moment please.” For a moment hopes were high. I thought I had happened upon someone at Apple who actually knew how to access their online inventory system and who would be able to give me the information I needed. As I said, hopes were high – for a moment. Then she came back and said that I’d just have to call the store.

So . . . about three hours after the store opened I finally got someone to answer the phone. She told me that they did indeed have the 13” MacBook Pro I wanted, and I asked if she could set one aside for me to pick up later that day. She told me to go to reserve.apple.com, pick out what I wanted, and select the Saddle Creek store as the pickup location. When I got back to the office, I tried. Imagine my surprise when I found that they website she provided actually just redirected me to the iPhone page. Double grrrrr.

Back to Apple chat. I explained the situation to the next chat rep. He said, “Just a moment and let me prepare a custom URL for you.” He hit me with a URL that directed me to the Saddle Creek store. I worked my way through the form only to find out that it merely allowed me to make a shopping reservation. It didn’t actually let me select a product. I explained to the rep that his URL wasn’t allowing me to actually make the reservation that the store rep said I could make. I also explained that I didn’t want to drive an hour and a half only to find out that all of the computers had been sold. Another “One moment please” followed by “I’m sorry, but you can’t reserve items online.”

I was irked. The rep cheerfully asked, “Why not take advantage of free shipping by ordering from Apple’s online store?” I replied that the online store – even when I asked on Tuesday – would not be able to get the product to me before I left town for a conference.

Ultimately I wound up just risking it, and fortunately the store still had them in stock when arrived. But it left me wondering, “If service is this poor when I’m just trying to purchase a product, how bad is the ‘service after the sale’? “

Not answering the phone during morning business hours for three successive days.
Giving misinformation during a phone call.
Offering no way to hold an item for a customer driving an hour and a half just to get to your store.

It’s interesting to note that my really dedicated Apple friends all rave about how wonderful Apple’s service is, and I’ve read a couple of articles about their highly ranked service. If the Apple Store at Saddle Creek in Germantown is any sort of indication though, I’m not looking forward to much in the way of service.

Open Up the Platform!

News is now spreading across blogs that Apple has finally approved Opera Mini for the iPhone. (Need it? Get it for free in the iTunes store.)

So what does this hold for the future? In the short term, I hope this means Firefox for the iPhone. I like Firefox, and I’ve been hoping to see an iPhone version for some time. For the long term, does this mean that Apple is changing its stance on apps?

For those who don’t know, Apple has officially been opposed to apps that duplicate core iPhone functionality. That has been interpreted to mean that since the iPhone has a built-in e-mail client, you can’t make another one for it. Since the iPhone has a built-in telephone application, you can’t make another one for it. Since the iPhone has a built-in web browser . . . well . . . you get the picture.

Given all that history, the fact that the Opera Mini web browser is now available for the iPhone, could be huge. Or it could be nothing. At the very least, it could be a sign of Apple opening the door for some changes. However, as many developers have experienced, Apple can slam doors just as quickly as it opens them.

I’ve played around with Opera Mini, and I’m not impressed yet even though I like the tabs. Opera Mini actually seems a little slower than Safari on my phone, although others are experiencing better results. Faster or slower though, I hope that Opera’s approval by the App Store reviewers bodes well for things to come.

Why I didn’t want an iPad, and why I think I want one now

When I saw the iPad preview information, I was struck with a lot of the same impressions that others had: it’s a big iPod Touch. To a great extent, that’s still my opinion. However, several days ago I read a review that (somewhat) changed the way I think about the iPad.

David Pogue, writing in the New York Times, did a two-part review that looks at the iPad from both a techie perspective and an “everyone else” perspective. In his closing, Pogue wrote, “ . . . the iPad is not a laptop. It’s not nearly as good for creating stuff. On the other hand, it’s infinitely more convenient for consuming it — books, music, video, photos, Web, e-mail and so on.” Strangely enough, these few lines made the difference for me.

When I look at a product – computer, camera bag, kayak, whatever – I take a “be all that you can be” approach. I expect the item to have loads of functionality. In short, I expect it to be the be-all-end-all device. That’s unrealistic of course, but I still expect it! So whatever the device, I look at all potential uses to which I might put it, and then I evaluate it based on how well I think it will meet my expectations.

This was the test that the iPad failed when I initially considered it. In my mind the iPad was the PERFECT form factor for a true tablet PC. However, it lacked the one-two punch I consider essential for a tablet: a stylus and good handwriting recognition software. In spite of what Steve Jobs has to say, I can see the value of a stylus, and I wish the iPad had one. I have previously used Microsoft OneNote under Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. The handwriting recognition software was really very good for either print or cursive writing, and I saw a lot of possibilities there. Unfortunately, the PC itself was just too heavy. That’s why I thought the iPad would have been perfect, but alas, no stylus.

But David Pogue’s review made me rethink the iPad. Once I resigned myself to the fact that it’s not a great device for creating stuff, the idea became a lot more palatable. When I think of it as a device for consuming stuff, it makes a lot more sense. Since my first portable device, I’ve read a lot of e-books. The iPad should be fine for that. The browser and add-on apps should make it a good device for consuming lot of other content as well.

This seems to make all the difference to me. In trying to accept the iPad for what it is, I have (somewhat) rejected what I think it could be. And it truly looks like a great device for consuming content.

So . . . maybe I do need one after all.

Links from Top Tech Trends Live Blog – ALA Midwinter 2010

As always, the Top Tech Trends discussion was lively, and people contributed a lot of information to the live blog via links. Here is a compilation of links from the live chat in chronological order. In some cases, if it didn’t appear that the link went to the correct place, I tried to track down the site that I thought the user meant. I’ve also supplemented with a few links about the panelists.

 

To view the full live blog and Twitter coverage from top Tech Trends, visit the LITA blog.

 

Amanda Etches-Johnson

Blog without a Library

http://twitter.com/etches

 

Jason Griffey

Jason Griffey dot Net

Pattern Recognition

http://www.twitter.com/griffey

 

Joe Murphy

http://twitter.com/libraryfuture

 

Lauren Pressley

Lauren’s Library Blog

http://twitter.com/laurenpressley

 

David Walker

David Walker’s Website

 

LITA Blog

http://litablog.org/

 

Top Tech Trends Midwinter 2010 on Ustream

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/midwinter-2010-discussion-group

 

Baylor University – Library Resources for Mobile Devices

http://researchguides.baylor.edu/library_resources_mobile_devices

 

Usabilla

http://usabilla.com/

 

CrazyEgg

http://crazyegg.com/

 

Top Tech Trends Twitter Stream

http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%23alamwttt

 

FourSquare

http://foursquare.com/

 

Horizon Project

http://www.nmc.org/horizon

 

2010 Horizon Report – web

http://wp.nmc.org/horizon2010/

 

2010 Horizon Report – PDF

http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2010-Horizon-Report.pdf

 

Augmented Reality Example for Android

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b64_16K2e08

 

Harper County Public Library Mobile App

http://www.hcplonline.info/hcplmobile/

 

National Library of Medicine Mobile Apps

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/mobile/

 

Copia: a social, e-reading experience

http://www.thecopia.com/

 

LibraryThing iPhone App

http://www.librarything.com/blog/2010/01/local-books-iphone-application.php

 

Blio – free eReader software

http://blioreader.com/

 

Article: Singularity Proponent Ray Kurzweil Reinvents the Book, Again

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/12/blio-ray-kurzweil-book/

 

Smell of Books

http://smellofbooks.com/

 

Article: The Strange Case of Academic Libraries and E-Books Nobody Reads

http://www.teleread.org/2010/01/07/the-strange-case-of-academic-libraries-and-e-books-nobody-reads/

 

Article: New Study Documents Epidemic of Online Book Piracy

http://www.publishers.org/main/PressCenter/Archicves/2010_January/EpidemicofOnlineBookPiracy.htm

 

Online Review Form for Top Tech Trends Session

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/F5R7W7V

 

Other Top Tech Trends writeups from around the net.

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: Top Tech Trends Panel Focuses on End Users and Ebooks

 

Market Intelligence for Librarians: Top Tech Trends from ALA’s Midwinter Meeting

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: LITA Reboots Top Tech Trends Panel

 

Krafty Librarian: LITA Top Technology Trends

Top Tech Trends – ALA Midwinter 2010

This time around LITA’s Top Tech Trends featured an entirely new set of speakers who had never appeared on this panel before.

 

AMANDA ETCHES-JOHNSON

User Experience Librarian

McMaster University

 

JASON GRIFFEY

Head of Library Information Technology

University of Tennessee, Chattanooga

 

JOE MURPHY

Science Librarian

Yale University

 

LAUREN PRESSLEY

Instructional Design Librarian

Wake Forest University

 

DAVID WALKER

Web Services Librarian

California State University System

 

The discussion was moderated by Top Tech Trends chair, Gregg Silvis.

 

To view the live blog transcript from Top Tech Trends – ALA Midwinter 2010, visit

http://litablog.org/2010/01/alamwttt/.

 

David Walker

We need a mega-search that goes beyond Google Scholar and takes advantage of link resolvers – a sort of next-gen federated search.  – working to craft something that is unique to your library.

How do you give access to hundreds of databases that libraries subscribe to?

As more content is brought together, new systems will provide greater/better access.

Any tool that addresses a fundamental problem for libraries will  have great penetration.

Because data lives in silos, searching means going to silos. RSS feeds means going to silos. How do we get  a unified mobile interface?

Vendors are currently engaged in a numbers race. Who has the most journals? Who has the most content?

We need to be able to pull data out of vendor silos and bring it together in a single service. Once we do that, we can add services on top of a single data stream.

Why aren’t library consortia coming together to build their own discovery systems rather than leaving this to the vendors?

 

Are libraries giving up more control to the cloud?

 

Amanda Etches-Johnson – Some institutions don’t have federated search! What improvements will we see from it?

 

David Walker – Federated searches level the playing field. It creates a better search, allows faceted browsing.

 

Amanda Etches Johnson – 2009 buzzwords: user experience. One of the problems is that no one can agree on what it means.

In the user experience design world, people are talking about how it makes users feel.

Mobile interfaces are stripped down. You don’t have time, bandwidth, or real estate for fancy design.

Users are seeking out mobile interfaces – not just on mobile devices, but also on regular screens.  Need for speed!

What we do for mobile devices is really going to impact web design and what we do for large-screen formatting.

Automated usability testing is up and coming. Subscription-based options for doing usability, but this doesn’t replace usability professionals! Check out http://usabilla.com/.

Who is responsible for developing the user interface experience? Does the vendor do it? Does each institution do it?

 

An interesting thought emerged from discussions around the table and from audience-submitted comments. How exactly do we measure the user experience? User experience quality is hard to measure, but we still need to be having the conversations. It was noted that currently most user experience research is coming from outside libraries.

 

Lauren Pressley – Different types of groups expect different things from us.

 

Jason Griffey – Currently building a new library at UT Chattanooga. They’ve spent a lot of time thinking about physical usability and overall usability of the structure.

 

How do you pair this with online usability and user experience across services? Twitterer memclaughlin notes that website design should connect with physical library design.

 

Amanda – Literature talks about how to develop a more holistic approach. Be cognizant that there are other elements to consider.

 

Joe Murphy – We have recently seen near-universal mobile adoption from all patron groups.

The changes are coming from user expectations. Small downloadable apps for smartphones.

SMS is the oldest, strongest, and most flexible mobile app. It’s more than just a communication tool. It’s also a research tool.

Use of SMS for reference has really taken off, but just because it’s a new environment doesn’t mean that it changes core values of reference and libraries.

For some users, the only reason that print is relevant is when it’s not available electronically.

Mobile technology is changing our opinions about what is acceptable in libraries. Do our libraries even have the cell phone signal strength to support the technology?

Location-based gaming is up and coming. How do we manage it, and how do we leverage it? There can be rewards for using location-based services such as waiving fines or other, less traditional options.

Twitter became a standard in 2009. Now that it’s a standard libraries are reacting to it in a different way. It’s a platform for services. Some user groups may never use Twitter, but that shouldn’t stop us from using it to engage other groups.

The ability to be continually flexible is very demanding!

Mobile technology does not change the soul of libraries.

 

David Walker – What do smaller libraries do? What should they be focusing on?

Joe Murphy – If we spend more time prepping for technologies and services, what suffers? How do we balance serving our multiple constituencies?

We have to figure out the priorities for future relevance. We have to be ready for the next couple of years in addition to maintaining traditional strengths.

 

Lauren Pressley – Augmented reality  – blending virtual data with the real world

Augmented reality combines real and virtual data in a way that happens in real time with a 3d nature.

The extra data helps people gather more meaning from what they’re seeing.

As an example, consider the instant replay of a hockey game. You can see a virtual line that indicates the path that the puck traveled. You don’t actually see the line, but it helps you better understand what happened during play.

 

Greater potential for augmented reality games?

2010 Horizon Report predicts impact of augmented reality in education.

Augmented reality helps organizations/individuals embed contextual information.

Check out WolfWalk from NCSU for an example using historical pictures from digital collections.

 

Library applications? Imagine a tool for the periodicals section – tutorials pop up to help users at point of need. Or how about a pop-up that helps users visualize and maybe even narrow in on call numbers when they’re searching the stacks?

And a suggestion from Twitterer jaimebc: When you walk into the library an augmented reality app could give you information on award winners and best sellers.

 

David W. – Do you see libraries taking ownership of that? Does the public library take ownership of the city?

 

Ideally – an application that allows users to plug their own data into it. Crowdsourcing again.

 

By layering groups of historical photos, users could walk down Main Street and see what it looked like in the 1850s, 1870s, 1900s, 1920s, etc.

 

Jason G. – The unique integration of archival materials. Libraries have an opportunity to use archives as teaching/training tools as well as interesting tools for the community.

 

David W. – As you browse the stacks, people miss part of the collection if it’s back on a server or in archives. Augmented reality could fill in those gaps.

 

Jason Griffey – 2009 was the year of the iPhone App Store.

App store opened in 2008. By January 2009, 500,000,000 apps had been downloaded. App downloads are now into the billions.

The growth has been unlike anything the computer world has ever seen.

Given the popularity of the app store, pretty much every other cell phone manufacture is getting on the bandwagon.

With all of these apps though, there are only a handful that are library-specific.

 

Jason predicts that 2010 will be the year the app dies because of HTML 5 and CSS 3.

HTML5 allows for offline storage. You can store locally using just HTML 5. Native audio and video support can reduce the need for Flash. It supports Canvas – online drawing.

If you’re thinking about writing an app, think about writing it in web standards.

Jason notes that about 95-96 % of what he currently does can be done in a browser.

New standards will bring really rich app-like experiences inside a browser.

 

A couple of Twitterers pointed out the need to develop on platforms besides just the iPhone. Perhaps these new web standards are the way to level the playing field on development.

 

Group topic – The Reinvention of the Book

Moderator Gregg Silvis brought out a 10-year old Rocket e-book and an Amazon Kindle. Form factor is surprisingly similar. In fact, several Twitterers noted that the two devices are "frighteningly" similar.

 

Jason – Thinks that the e-book as a hardware device is dying. Sites like Copia, Blio, and multifunction devices such as the (upcoming) Apple tablet may contribute to this. Copia will allow users to interact in ways such as social annotation. Blio allows instructors to embed quizzes in the text.

 

Lauren – The issue of ownership with e-books is different. For many people, reading is a solitary experience that individuals share with the author.

The concept of ownership with e-books is different.

How much will publishers move to a format that libraries feel comfortable with?

 

Joe – I don’t see e-book devices having a place in a library. The focus should be on content.

I can’t get books from the library on my iPhone. I’m buying it through the Kindle app on my iPhone.

For some of us, our iPhone can be our everything device.

The Twitter world has really changed my expectations of reading.

 

I want to be able to interact with the text.

 

Amanda – Devices are not the future. We have a lot of subscriptions that are read on computer screens.

 

David – Undergrads are going to very specific online journals because it’s easy and convenient. Sometimes they would actually be better served by going to the catalog and finding a book with a more general treatment of the topic.

E-book licensing isn’t friendly to smaller institutions.

If e-books were as accessible as journal articles, would that change undergraduate research behavior?

 

Jason – Publishers should pay attention to the recording industry and learn that DRM only hurt music sales. No consumer likes DRM.

 

Audience  and Twitter comments – A lot of users just don’t have access to laptops and mobile devices. Perhaps they can’t afford them. Perhaps their network infrastructure can’t support them. Where do libraries come into play? Over the years, libraries have been among the first to place technology in the hands of users. Do libraries have a role to play with e-book readers?

 

Another online commenter pointed out that even when people cannot afford some things, they often have cell phones, Playstations, Wiis, etc.

 

Other Top Tech Trends writeups from around the net.

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: Top Tech Trends Panel Focuses on End Users and Ebooks

 

Market Intelligence for Librarians: Top Tech Trends from ALA’s Midwinter Meeting

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: LITA Reboots Top Tech Trends Panel

 

Krafty Librarian: LITA Top Technology Trends

Solving the Repository Sustainability Problem

This session examined the experiences of three different schools in maintaining and marketing their institutional repositories.

 

Michelle Harper

OCLC Moderator

Director of Special Collections

 

Sarah L. Shreeves

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Coordinator for the Illinois Digital Environment for Access to Learning and Scholarship (IDEALS)

http://www.ideals.illinois.edu/

 

The library manages the front-end and services portions of the project. Campus IT handles the infrastructure. This project has always had strong administrative support. This is a DSpace-based repository, and it houses content from departments across campus. There have been 1.2 million downloads from the repository.

 

They are shifting their thinking from a repository-centered focus to a services-centered focus. The idea of just filling a box with stuff is a dead end. They think in terms of both services and collections. This is a substantial shift in thinking which is something of a trend in this field.

 

IDEALS is leading the way in the library’s other digital preservation efforts. Existing policies and procedures can be applied where applicable. Technical reports and occasional papers are added to IDEALS. It’s becoming more fully integrated into campus workflows.

 

They have tried to eliminate bureaucracy and enable departments to add content on their own. When collections are set up for departments, the departments are given free reign to develop their own policies and procedures. The managers have tried to help weave it into the fabric of the university.

 

They are also looking at serving non-traditional users and special missions of the university.

 

They try to think about the roles of their repository: access, dissemination, and long-term preservation.

 

MacKenzie Smith

MIT Libraries

Associate Director for Technology

http://dspace.mit.edu/

 

The managers of MIT’s project think of the institutional repository as part of the library’s mission of preserving university-generated content.

 

The repository has 40-50 thousand documents of high-quality content.

The success of a repository depends on how well you define, use, and market the repository.

 

If you look at it simply as a piece of infrastructure, it’s cheaper than your link resolver. If you look at it as a suite of services that are critical to the future of your organization, it has to be sustainable.

 

Conflating the institutional repository with things like open access is a mistake. You cannot pin the success of one on the success of another. Just because one is (or is not) successful, that doesn’t necessarily apply to the other.

 

How are we going to define success in terms of financial sustainability?

Are libraries comfortable with the blurring of the lines between libraries, museums, and archives?

What are the added value services?

Is it realistic for libraries to be in charge of their own technology fate?

Is it even useful to talk about institutional repositories outside of the context of libraries in general?

 

People don’t visit IRs just to see what an institution produced recently. They come because of a subject or because of types of content.

 

Catherine Mitchell

Directory, Publishing Services

California Digital Library

http://www.cdlib.org/

 

What might a sustainable IR look like?

Viable financial model

Interoperable design

Relevant

 

Even within one’s own infrastructure, the IR should be able to connect to other infrastructures.

 

We have to understand the nature of value in relation to academic research.

Who are the users and what do they need? It’s not enough to just build a place for stuff.

 

The managers realized that they weren’t engaging with their users. The IR only had 30,000 total documents while the university was producing more than 26,000 documents per year.

 

Ideological and practical irrelevance

Few on campus understood the term open access

Fewer seemed to understand or feel comfortable with the term repository

Virtually no one had heard of eScholarship (the brand name of this institution’s repository)

 

There was a need for support for:

Campus-based journal and monographic publishing programs

Multimedia publications

Data sets

Conferences

Non-traditional publications

 

In other words . . . Needs=value.

 

A rebranding initiative was conducted with a new focus on:

Providing a targeted and compelling publishing services infrastructure

Integrating those services into the scholarly research lifecycle

 

IR Deposit is a natural by-product of services rendered, rather than an end in itself.

 

Reinventing the IR as open access publisher

 

eScholarship Site Redesign

Emphasize services, not policy

Contextualization of content: engaging with problems of authority and legitimacy

Enhance research tools and publication display

Remain true to our development philosophy of simplicity, generalizability, and scalability

 

Enhanced publishing services

Journals, books, conference papers, seminars

 

Marketing: What’s in it for the faculty?

Keep your copyright

Reach more readers

Publish when you want to

Protect your work’s future

 

Value Propositions

To enable scholars to have direct control over the creation and dissemination of the full range of their work.

To provide solutions for current and emerging scholarly publishing needs within UC that aren’t met by traditional publishing models.

Toa coordinate with UC Press to provide a sustainable publishing model that extends the University’s capacity to disseminate its creative output to the world.

 

Questions about formats for archiving and data migration

IDEALS offers three tiers of preservation support. Under the highest level of preservation support, there is an effort to maintain the viability, renderability, understandability, and functionality of the original digital object. For more information, see the IDEALS Digital Preservation Support Policy.