Re: AIS Library Policy and Procedures

Hi All
I have a few instinctive opinions subject to much change by the input from others. The concept of sending slides to the AIS library is like throwing money down a bottomless pit. Yes, something should be done to preserve historical photos. I am aware that there are massive collections of slides all over the world and that they ALL need evaluation for posterity. We are probably talking about an obsolete product (the digital takeover!) which will be rendered unusable before they can be cataloged. We need to be thinking of pictures in magnitudes of 100,000 increments with maybe 250,000 being a wild estimate on my part before this project is done. These need to be cataloged by a team of volunteers based on the magnitude of the task. Yes, the original slides can be stored at the library after they have been cataloged. (Even culling inferior duplicates is an enormous task.) The real task is getting these images into useable digital images that can be duplicated quickly and cheaply "on demand". This needs to be done before the slides go to the library. Logistics can be fascinating! We are in the throws of a rapid technological change which will initially complicate and, ultimately, simplify our lives. I would still maintain that each AIS Section should catalog their own photos first. Step one with all of these slide collections is - get them to the Sections. Each Section should be converting their own data to digital.. (I plan to do this with my Medians) Once this is done, then the originals can go to the library as a "resource of last resort".(?) Step number one is to establish a catalog system between the sections and AIS that allows for rapid searches and recovery. I believe that I have a system since I am already dealing with 4 categories of Medians. However, others may come up with something better, so discussion is necessary. I would contemplate the storage of digital images on remote hard drives and the need to use both CD and DVD burners to transport information copies on demand. PC and MAC compatibility will be very important but not difficult. The Hager slides are but the tip of the iceberg. The folks in St. Louis are already going thru the Harder slides with the same dilemma. There are many other collections which will eventually find their way to the library. Scanning is a painfully slow process, never mind cataloging! I'm not sure where we are going to find an "army of ants" to get this thing done!!???
Onward and upward!!!!
Have a great holiday season - and come back rested! I anticipate a spectacular year ahead!
Terry Aitken, Median Slide Chair

Robt R Pries wrote:

The Hager/DuBose Estate will create a substantial but
as yet unknown amount of money for the AIS Library
available each year. It promises to make the library a
substantial AIS institution. But with every
opportunity there are associated problems. For
example, the library is an AIS entity but the estate
will have the AIS Foundation administering its funds.
It is a situation similar to the US presidency and the
congress. I would propose that before money is
available and is begun to be allocated that the AIS
board and the Foundation create a written set of
policies, procedures and standards. In this way both
groups along with the librarian and the library
committee can function without continual action and
reaction on the part of the three groups. If the
goals, policy and standards are set in advance, life
should be easier for all concerned.

The Hager slides already cry out for some policy to be
in place. I would suggest that they be archived in the
library. Although the AIS slide program chair should
obviously have access to these, I believe the archive
itself should reside in the library for two reasons.
First the library is a relatively permanent place
whereas slide chairman changes and slide sets run the
risk of loss with changing locations. Second there
will be funds available to the library for duplication
and/or scanning of the slides and the maintenance of
the archive.
I am not jumping the gun on policy, especially
concerning slides since these are already in hand.
They require cataloging, scanning so they can be used,
and storage. They are many decisions that need to be
made concerning how this will be done and some funds
needed to accomplish this. There are scores of issues
around this that should be resolved, so the AIS and
the Foundation understand how the archiving and
accessing this data will be accomplished.
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