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World digital library construction under way
United States and United Nations officials signed an agreement Oct. 17 to cooperate in building a World Digital Library Web site. Officials said the site could be available to the public in late 2008.

Librarian of Congress James Billington proposed the WDL in 2005 after Google donated $3 million for the effort. The Web library will offer digitized versions of materials from around the world at no charge. The collected materials will include manuscripts, maps, books, musical scores, sound recordings, films, prints and photographs.

Under the agreement signed by Billington and Abdul Waheed Khan, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s assistant director for communication and information, the Library of Congress and UNESCO will cooperate in developing guidelines and technical specifications for the project, enlist new partners and secure additional funding.

The two organizations — in conjunction with the Bibliotheca Alexandrina of Alexandria, Egypt; the National Library of Brazil; the National Library of Egypt; the National Library of Russia; and the Russian State Library — developed a test project that they are demonstrating at the UNESCO General Conference.

The test library supports seven languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish and Portuguese.

AsusTek to compete with MIT’s $100 laptop
AsusTek Computer has introduced the Eee PC, an ultraportable laptop PC for less than $300. The price puts the Eee squarely in competition with the XO-1 — the $100 laptop developed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and marketed by the One Laptop Per Child project.

Read more technology news on Government Computer News’ Web site at

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Shutterstock image: looking for code.

    How DOD embraced bug bounties -- and how your agency can, too

    Hack the Pentagon proved to Defense Department officials that outside hackers can be assets, not adversaries.

  • Shutterstock image: cyber defense.

    Why PPD-41 is evolutionary, not revolutionary

    Government cybersecurity officials say the presidential policy directive codifies cyber incident response protocols but doesn't radically change what's been in practice in recent years.

  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

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