Friday, January 23, 2009

Digital Initiatives and Special Collections News

University Libraries Experience Digital Development Success in Past Year and Plan for Initiatives in New Year

Dr. Arthur W. Hafner, Dean of University Libraries, outlined the Libraries’ strategic goals in the June 2008 issue of this newsletter. One of those five goals was to expand the Libraries’ digital initiatives and facilitate development of emerging media opportunities for learning, research, and classroom enhancement.

The beginning of a new year provides us an opportunity to review progress on this goal and to look ahead and make plans for further achieving our goals.

The Ball State University Libraries have made many exciting advancements toward accomplishing digital initiatives in the past year, including:

• Increasing the number of digital objects in the Digital Media Repository (DMR) to over 112,000 items to support research, learning, and teaching
• Designing a new DMR public interface with enhanced features, new content, expanded menus, and improved navigability
• Implementing Zoomify in DMR collections to allow users to view, zoom, and pan detailed images in a quick and efficient manner
• Enhancing DMR collections by creating Google interactive maps for selected collections, such as Muncie Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps and the Man Haters Film Collection
• Developing the Cardinal Scholar Institutional Repository to provide global access to Ball State’s student and faculty work

In total, 14 new digital collections have been made available for global access in the Digital Media Repository (http://libx.bsu.edu/), bringing the total to 72. The University Libraries have been successful in receiving grant funding and in participating in collaborative grant projects to further develop digital resources for students, faculty, and researchers worldwide.

Here are a few digital developments to watch for in 2009:

• An emerging media project to create educational applications using Digital Media Repository collections and other University Libraries’ digital resources through Microsoft Surface™ that will allow for data and digital asset manipulation by students for class projects
• A partnership to create a digital collection of Delaware County aerial plat maps that illustrate property changes between 1976 and 2006, including land development and use, zoning changes, and urban sprawl
• Collaborative grant projects with other institutions for the University Libraries to provide digitization services and host their digital collections
• New enhancements to Digital Media Repository collections, including a portal to U.S. Veterans digital resources
• New collections in the Digital Media Repository, including digital audio and video interviews with United States military veterans, Ball State University monographs, early issues of the Ball State Daily News (then called the Easterner), Indiana archeological surveys, and rare books from Archives and Special Collections
• The opening of the Helen B. and Martin D. Schwartz Special Collections and Global Digital Complex on the first floor of Bracken Library.

Read future issues of The Library Insider for more of the University Libraries’ digital developments to provide opportunities for learning, research, and classroom enhancement in 2009 and beyond. For more information, contact John B. Straw, Assistant Dean for Digital Initiatives and Special Collections, JStraw@bsu.edu, 765-285-5078.

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