Digital CurationDay – end

The DCC finished with the customary summing up – state-of-the… – presentation by Cliff Lynch. Cliff’s talks are always entertaining – no visuals so you actually have to listen to the words. [(That’s not a bad thing. I’m thinking of doing all my presentation today – see later  on a flip chart, but it’s a small audience. Of course I could use P8w*p£&nt.]  Literally notes from Cliff’s talk:.
Can we afford to keep changing standards?

What is acceptable data loss?
What is acceptable for recomuptability? Should we recompute on demand? Could be swung by workflows?
Cost of reobservability?
Boink for distributed computing. Gets buy-in from the public. Sony have put support in playStation. Sony is prepackaging protein folding
Where is aggregate resource for preservation going to com from?
How are we to set up organizations to do it?
May divide world into public objects funded by government OR into research universities and cultural memory organizations.
Talk of “business models” may be a way of avoiding facing up to real costs and sustainability.
Need business model that maps onto lifecycle of objects

So in conclusion I think that the iissues are well recognized by the particpants. Some are doing huge and exciting things. The well organized communities are probably well served – they have to concentrate on the bits and the media. But the scattered communities are much worse off.
Some very positive things for me personally:

  • ORE will fly. Jane Hunter has actually buily ORE into SCOPE (I should have mentioned that).  That’s very important because any system has to be seen to be implementable. Jim Downing blogs this (Roundup 14th Dec P.S.). The eChemistry project will use ORE as the fundamental architure. I described it as “changing the public face of chemical information”.  Perhaps it could be more accurate to say: “creating the public face of chemical information” – i.e. we have a new paradigm where centralised databases give way to scientist-based collections.
  • SPECTRa is being adopted. Everything in repository-world comes with the warning that you have to pay for the glue – there is and will not be a click-and-go approach. So it’s great to see that UIUC has budgedt for the glue.
  • Huge and vibrant contingent from Australia. Australia really has got its act together – they are a community where everyone works together. I’m told that this is partly because the government mandates and funds (sounds like “socialized repositories” :-)). I’m going to oz next February so it was great to meet som many – Margaret Henty, Andy Treloar, Jane Hunter…

Anyway thanks for a great meeting.  A huge communal sympathy for ChrisR – we all signed a book with parchment pages – I can predict that it at least will be preserved

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