Economics and Engineering for Preserving Digital Content
2008) Economics and Engineering for Preserving Digital Content. (
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The keynote address of ECDL 2007 suggests that progress towards practical long-term digital preservation is stalled. The current article responds by sketching how a modest software development team could implement and deploy a previously described conceptual solution, Trustworthy Digital Object (TDO) methodology, for the technical component of digital preservation. It emphasizes scholarly and cultural digital content, but could be extended to discuss bureaucratic records. Curators cannot afford unique technology, but must exploit marketplace offerings. Macro economic facts suggest shifting most preservation work from repository institutions to their users. Much of the software needed is available. It has, however, not yet been selected, adapted, integrated, or deployed for digital preservation. Our earlier articles describe conceptual solutions for all known challenges of preserving a single object, but do not deal with software development or collection scaling. We describe a practical strategy for detailed design and implementation of software to automate the clerical component of digital preservation. Tools for daily work can embed packaging for preservation without much burdening their users. Document handling is complicated by human sensitivity to communication nuances. Our engineering section therefore suggests how project managers can master the many pertinent details.
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