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Wednesday, October 2 • 12:00pm - 12:30pm
Concepts and data in audio preservation: A meaningful relationship

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What do we talk about when we talk preservation metadata? There is a meaningful relationship between the concepts applied in the preservation of audio media, and the structured descriptions (metadata) used to document the media as well as the preservation process. By examining a complete case study, this article aims to make a case for the importance of defining a clear conceptual model and of making it explicit through open documentation. Too often preservation metadata is presented at implementation level, for example in the form of an XML schema, as a way to avoid discussing the conceptual model which is missing. In this presentation, I argue that (1) when we talk preservation metadata, it deserves recommendation to study and define concepts before moving over to the data itself, and (2) that the right way to encode concepts into a formal language (such as XML) requires reversibility. By that I mean that we should not aim to produce a metadata set that is neat, with granularity as the first sign of sophistication, but a structured description that allows future human readers to infer the value and principles that inhabit our archival ethos and that motivated us to encode our culture this way.
The article aims to contribute to the development of a full theory of information preservation, while at the same time providing a complete example of data sheet ready to use: from the conceptual model to the database documentation (SQL) and the software to ingest and retrieve data.

avatar for Federica Bressan

Federica Bressan

Researcher, Ghent University
Federica Bressan (1981) is a Fulbright scholar and Marie Curie alumna. Currently she is a postdoctoral researcher at Ghent University, Belgium, and appointed Professor of Digital Humanities at the University of Nova Gorica, Slovenia. She holds an MD in Musicology and a PhD in Computer... Read More →

Wednesday October 2, 2019 12:00pm - 12:30pm BST
Theatre 2