Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Scanning Your Digital Future

Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Scanning Your Digital Future

Article excerpt

The special collection: Once relegated to a library alcove, a library's unique holdings are being increasingly seen as a core library asset. This is especially true given the prevalence of digital surrogates and easy electronic access to most books, serials, and other published content in the library's main collection. By digitizing a special collection, libraries set the stage for better exposure and use of their unique materials and for preserving them.

As Marshall Breeding points out in his column this month, grant funding may be harder to get for such digitization efforts these days, since digitization projects have become so commonplace. But this does not mean that digitization efforts are not challenging.

As with most subjects we cover in Computers in Libraries, digitization projects require tech know-how. There are lessons to be learned from those who have carried out such projects, and we have two case studies to share in this issue--one by a library with a $10,000 budget and the other by a consortia attempting to build a digital archiving platform to support the libraries in its network.

The digitization projects discussed in this issue focus on photo, document, and media archives, with most authors noting such efforts expand beyond the digitization process itself. …

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