Magazine article American Libraries

LC, Xerox Do Digital Duet

Magazine article American Libraries

LC, Xerox Do Digital Duet

Article excerpt

Part of the mission of the Library of Congress is to ensure that America's history and heritage are accessible for generations to come. To that end, the library and Xerox Corporation are working together to develop better ways to store, preserve, and access treasured digital images.

The two organizations are studying the potential of using the JPEG 2000 format in large repositories of digital cultural-heritage materials. The outcome may be leaner, faster systems that institutions around the country can use to store their riches and to make their collections widely accessible.

The LC collection includes such images as a panorama of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake, a photograph of Abraham Lincoln taken four days before he was assassinated, and a picture of the Wright brothers' first flight at Kitty Hawk.

Designed to help develop guidelines and best practices for digital content, the project relates to LC's National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program, which works with several other federal agencies on digitization standards.

According to the library, the trial will include up to a million digitized public-domain prints, photographs, maps, and other content from LC. Scientists in the Xerox Innovation Group will work with these materials to create an image repository that they plan to use to develop and test approaches for the management of large image collections.

The LC images to be used are already digitized (primarily in TIFF format), but JPEG 2000, a newer format for representing and compressing images, could make them easier to store, transfer, and display. …

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