Agencies collaborate on digitization guidelines

The Federal Agencies Digitization Guidelines Initiative, a partnership of a dozen federal agencies that is working to establish a common set of guidelines for the digitization of historical materials, has launched a new Web site.

The site, www.digitizationguidelines.gov, includes a glossary of digitization terms and concepts and news from the participating agencies. The initiative has two working groups: one focused on content that can be captured from still images and another on sound, video or motion picture film.

The still image working group will focus its efforts on content such as books, manuscripts, maps and photographic prints. Meanwhile, the audio-visual group will address standards and practices for sound, video and film.

The Web site came online in late September and features two draft documents that were developed by the still image working group and are open for comment until Nov. 15.

Officials say they expect that establishing guidelines will improve the quality and consistency of digitized documents and encourage collaboration and provide common benchmarks for the private sector, according to a recent press release from the Library of Congress.

The library is one agency participating in both of the initiative's working groups. Other participants include the National Archives and Records Administration, the National Transportation Library, the National Library of Medicine and the Smithsonian Institution and the Government Printing Office.

About the Author

Ben Bain is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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