Digital Library Digest: February 14, 2013

Posted by Vicky Zeamer on February 14, 2013 in Digital Library Digest.

The Library of Congress releases a blueprint for saving America’s recorded sound heritage for future generations

“The Library of Congress today unveiled “The Library of Congress National Recording Preservation Plan,” a blueprint for saving America’s recorded sound heritage for future generations. The congressionally mandated plan spells out 32 short- and long-term recommendations involving both the public and private sectors and covering infrastructure, preservation, access, education and policy strategies.

“The National Recording Preservation Act of 2000 called on the Librarian of Congress to “implement a comprehensive national sound recording preservation program” that “shall increase accessibility of sound recordings for educational purposes.” The plan released today is the cumulative result of more than a decade of work by the Library and its National Recording Preservation Board (, which comprises representatives from professional organizations of composers, musicians, musicologists, librarians, archivists and the recording industry.

“The publication of this plan is a timely and historic achievement,” said James H. Billington, Librarian of Congress. “As a nation, we have good reason to be proud of our record of creativity in the sound-recording arts and sciences. However, our collective energy in creating and consuming sound recordings has not been matched by an equal level of interest in preserving them for posterity. Radio broadcasts, music, interviews, historic speeches, field recordings, comedy records, author readings and other recordings have already been forever lost to the American people.

“Collecting, preserving and providing access to recorded sound requires a comprehensive national strategy. This plan is the result of a long and challenging effort, taking into account the concerns and interests of many public and private stakeholders. It is America’s first significant step toward effective national collaboration to save our recorded-sound heritage for future generations.””

From a Library of Congress press releaseLibrary Announces National Recording Preservation Plan
Data-rich online catalog of public art throughout the United States and Canada debuts

Where do you find public art? Do you see it every day, in murals in your neighborhood or an art installation on your campus? Have you traveled to visit destinations like Mount Rushmore or Cloud Gate in Chicago’s Millennium Park?

There is a new tool to help you find public art— the Public Art Archive™, a data-rich, online catalogue of public art throughout the U.S. and Canada put together by the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF). WESTAF is a regional arts service organization dedicated to the creative development and preservation of the arts, with an emphasis on technology. While the organization primarily serves the 13 states that make up its membership, WESTAF impacts the entire country through their new technology tools designed for the creative industries.

Launched in 2009, the archive is a free resource that allows a broad range of users to explore public art in their communities. Their extensive, standardized data includes items such as images of the public artwork at different stages of the project, documents with artists’ statements, audio of artist interviews, and video of the piece’s installation. The archive also boasts a mobile site that grants visitors easy access to the database, including a geo-location feature to immediately find artworks near you. With 100 collections catalogued to date, WESTAF continues to accept content submissions to the archive.

The NEA recently spoke with Rachel J. Cain, the program manager of the Public Art Archive™, and Anthony Radich, the executive director of WESTAF. We talked about the beginnings of the archive, how it works to serve the field right now, and their hopes for the future.

 From Elizabeth Miller’s article on the National Endowment for the Arts blog Art Works, Searching for Public Art

New software, ReadCube Web Reader, makes reading PDFs more interactive with hyperlinked in-line citations, annotations, clickable author names, and direct access to supplemental content 

“Publisher and research workflow solutions provider John Wiley & Sons has implemented Labtiva’s ReadCube Web Reader for the Wiley Online Library. PDFs read with ReadCube now allow users to access “hyperlinked in-line citations, annotations, clickable author names, and direct access to supplemental content, making it easier for researchers to discover, access and interact with scientific literature,” the company explained in a release.

“Users can also save articles and annotations to the free ReadCube Desktop reference manager, available for PCs and Macs. Additional features include tools geared toward helping researchers organize academic literature, find content using a new recommendation system based on their reading habits, and acquire articles using fewer proxies and logins.

“We’re making it easier for scientists to critically analyze their research and accelerate the dissemination of scientific knowledge,” Robert McGrath, co-founder and CEO of Labtiva, said in the announcement. “One of our goals is to create a multi-publisher ecosystem with millions of interconnected articles to help publishers maintain engagement with their readers.”

“At launch last week, the ReadCube features were available for 109 journals in the Wiley Online Library. The company will gradually roll out these features to the Online Library’s entire collection during the first half of 2013.”

From Matt Enis’s article from Library Journal, Wiley, Labtiva Enhance Interactivity of Scientific PDFs

Connects Local History Collections Across North Carolina With Single Search Box

“RALEIGH, NC – Researchers and history buffs alike may now search and access local history collections across North Carolina with a single search box thanks to a collaborative project led by the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center, NC LIVE, and the State Library of North Carolina.

“NC ECHO, available at, has been updated in order to expand access to unique local heritage collections previously scattered across a multitude of websites and North Carolina institutions. NC ECHO enables users to search across thousands of digitized and “born-digital” historic materials, including a wide variety of books, photographs, maps, family histories, state documents, newspapers and other materials from cultural heritage institutions around North Carolina. The collections available through NC ECHO include a diverse array of materials by and about the people, places and history of North Carolina.

“The previous NC ECHO program was managed by the State Library of North Carolina from 1999-2012, with the intent of identifying and digitizing local cultural heritage collections. The newly revived NC ECHO program continues with the same spirit, to build connections and improve access to these collections of historic materials.

“Over the coming year, the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center will continue to work with cultural institutions across North Carolina to add new materials to this statewide search. “This project shows how libraries, archives, and museums are working together to share their historical photo and document collections with all North Carolinians,” said Cal Shepard, State Librarian of North Carolina. “The NC ECHO website will unlock unique and important historical materials by making them easy to find and use for everyday researchers.””

From an NC Live press releaseNC ECHO Project Makes Local History Searchable, Accessible Online

Infographic: The Future of Libraries

The Future of Libraries

From, the Future of Libraries.

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