Is Digital Different?: How Information Creation, Capture, Preservation and Discovery are Being Transformed

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the authors
  • Reviews

This edited collection brings together global experts to explore the role of information professionals in the transition from an analogue to a digital environment.

The contributors, including David Nicholas, Valerie Johnson, Tim Gollins and Scott David, focus on the opportunities and challenges afforded by this new environment that is transforming the information landscape in ways that were scarcely imaginable a decade ago and is challenging the very existence of the traditional library and archive as more and more resources become available on line and as computers and supporting networks become more and more powerful.

By drawing on examples of the impact of other new and emerging technologies on the information sciences in the past, the book emphasizes that information systems have always been shaped by available technologies that have transformed the creation, capture, preservation and discovery of content. Key topics covered include:

  • search in the digital environment;
  • RDF and the semantic web;
  • crowd sourcing and engagement between institutions and individuals;
  • development of information management systems;
  • security: managing online risk;
  • long term curation and preservation;
  • rights and the Commons; and
  • finding archived records in the digital age.

Is Digital Different? illustrates the ways in which the digital environment has the potential to transform scholarship and break down barriers between the academy and the wider community, and draws out both the inherent challenges and the opportunities for information professionals globally.

Introduction and acknowledgements - Michael Moss and Barbara Endicott-Popovsky

1. What is the same and what is different - Michael Moss
2. Finding stuff - David Nicholas and David Clark
3. RDF, the Semantic Web, Jordan, Jordan and Jordan - Norman Gray
4. Crowd sourcing - Ylva Berglund Prytz
5. Pathways to integrating technical, legal and economic considerations in the design, development and deployment of trusted IM systems - Scott David and Barbara Endicott Popovsky
6. Finding archived records in a digital age - Tim Gollins and Emma Bayne
7. Security: managing online risk - Barbara Endicott-Popovsky
8. Rights and the Commons: navigating the boundary between public and private knowledge spaces - Gavan McCarthy and Helen Morgan
9. From the Library in Alexandria to the Google Campus: has the digital changed the way we do research? - David Thomas and Valeria Johnson

Michael Moss

Michael Moss is professor of archival science at the University of Northumbria, UK. Previously, he was research professor in archival studies in the Humanities Advanced Technology and Information Institute at the University of Glasgow, where he directed the Information Management and Preservation MSc program. He is a non-executive director of the National Records of Scotland and until 2014 a member of the Lord Chancellor's Advisory Council on National Archives and Records. In 2015 he was Miegunyah distinguished fellow at the University of Melbourne.

Barbara Endicott-Popovsky

Barbara Endicott-Popovsky, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity at the University of Washington, Director of the Master of Cybersecurity and Leadership program, Academic Director for the Masters in Infrastructure Planning and Management in the Urban Planning Department of the School of Built Environments and was named Department Fellow at Aberystwyth University Wales, UK (2012).

Marc J. Dupuis, Ph.D.

Marc J. Dupuis, Ph.D., is a researcher and lecturer with the University of Washington as well as the Director of Human Factors for the Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity (CIAC). His main focus is on understanding the information security behavior of individuals, including issues related to decision making and the user experience.

"I would highly recommend this book as an introduction to this topic. The authors' coverage of the subjects is clear and easily understood. The objective way material is presented guarantees the reader will be excited by the promise of digital, while appreciating the challenges or limitations of the format. It is also worth a read if you are interested in placing digital initiatives into a broader professional or historical context. The complex content is presented in an approachable yet thorough manner, giving the reader a chance to reflect on how new technologies may influence their own practice. No matter your knowledge level on the topic you are guaranteed to learn something new from this book."
- Abraham Wheeler, Michigan State University, Journal of Electronic Resources in Medical Libraries

"This is a useful compilation of many of the important considerations of how to manage digital content in the present environment."
- Technical Services Quarterly

“An exemplary concluding chapter on digital humanities scholarship nicely contrasts the paper era with research methodologies currently on the rise in the digital space, including those involving Big Data.”
-  Against the Grain

"Is Digital Different? achieves what it sets out to do, which is to present the opportunities and challenges of digital for archives cultural heritage institutions and should form part of any students’ or practitioners’ library. The editors should be commended for compiling such an interesting collection of essays." 
- Anthea Seles, The National Archives, Archives and Records

"I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to read a book and to learn, unlearn and relearn. As a professional in the field, I found the 180-pages of the book to be an enthralling read. Each chapter took me somewhere, and either exposed me to something new, for instance the world of libraries and their scenarios, or alternatively reaffirmed current information management thoughts .... In conclusion, it's a worthwhile read."
- Tim Newbegin, IQ

"This is an interesting book that deserves to be read by all information and IT professionals."
- Lucile Desligne`res, University of Oxford, Alexandria