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During Hydra Connect 2016 in Boston this October, we had several discussions around geospatial repository services. There was a half-day workshop and presentation on GeoConcerns -- part of the Hydra Geospatial Data Modeling Working Group chaired by Eliot Jordan; a panel discussion on sharing geospatial metadata; and a meeting of the Hydra Geospatial Interest Group.

Microscopy image by Juan G. Cueva and Miriam B. Goodman

For nearly four years, the Stanford Digital Repository (SDR) has been home to the research outputs of scientists and scholars from across Stanford’s campus. But while those data files, videos, source code, microscopy images, survey results, maps and more have been discoverable and accessible through the Libraries’ online catalog, SearchWorks, it has been hard to get an overview of all the available data. Until now.

Screen shot of an index map of an area in Japan. It shows an underlying map with rectangles overlayed, each of which represents a more detailed map of that area.

Index maps, a kind of finding aid for navigating large sets of maps geographically, are now available interactively via EarthWorks. The Stanford University Libraries (SUL) have been publishing digitized maps online for many years, and in the past two years georeferenced maps, along with geospatial data, satellite imagery, and aerial photographs have been made more easily discoverable via EarthWorks, but index maps have posed special challenges. Thanks to cooperation between the staff of the Stanford Geospatial Center and the EarthWorks development team in Digital Library Systems and Services (DLSS), these maps are now more easily discoverable and navigable.

Image of John Wayne paper based disc

Earlier this year the Stanford Media Preservation Lab and Conservation Lab were tasked with figuring out how to playback severely warped paper based disc sound recordings. The recordings in question are from a three disc set titled Man-Talk by Three Great Western Stars and each one-sided disc in the set features a single monologue by John Wayne, Bill Elliott, or Johnny Mack Brown.

Mark Matienzo

We are pleased to announce that Mark Matienzo is joining  Stanford Libraries as of September 19, 2016 as our Collaboration & Interoperability Architect. Mark will be joining Stanford from DPLA (the Digital Public Library of America) where he currently serves as the Director of Technology. He has previously worked  as an archivist, a digital library software developer, and the technical architect for the ArchivesSpace project, at institutions including DPLA, the Yale University Library, and The New York Public Library.

His background and skills in IT systems, data modeling, and community building across libraries, archives and museums (LAMs) make him uniquely qualified and well suited for this position. The Collaboration & Interoperability Architect is a key role. It promotes convergence and interoperable approaches to digital information management among LAMs. This ranges from helping arrange joint projects, to fostering and broadening collaborations on successful open source software efforts; from identifying better data models that work across sectors, to advancing interoperability via initiatives like IIIF, the International Image Interoperability Framework.

With funding support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, this role was created with the recognition that LAMs are at a critical stage of adapting to the digital world, that they have common needs and opportunities, and through cross-pollinating ideas and efforts early and often, they can converge on common approaches—like  IIIF—where the whole is greater than the sum the parts. 

Stanford has deliberately pursued collaboration and interoperability as a key strategy for its digital library efforts. Many hands working in concert produces access to more information, richer services, faster innovation and more sustainable systems. As we say in the Hydra Project, “if you want to go far, go together.” 

There is no shortage of collaboration opportunities on the horizon. We anticipate that Mark will be engaged in efforts drawing on IIIF, linked data, cross-LAM data models and Web archiving. He will also no doubt have a hand in helping extend and broaden some of the most adaptable open source technologies in this space including Hydra, Fedora and Blacklight in its many forms (including ArcLight, Spotlight and GeoBlacklight). 

Logo of the International Image Interoperability Framework

The Stanford University Libraries (SUL) has introduced new features in its online catalog, SearchWorks, and the Stanford Digital Repository to make it easier for users worldwide to get access to a treasure trove of high resolution digital images.  The basis of these new features is the International Image Interoperability Framework, a global initiative co-founded by SUL to support the creation of a global network of broadly accessible images curated and produced by libraries, museums, archives and galleries to support research, teaching and broad public use.  

Spotlights in the Centre Ceramique, Maastricht

On August 9-10, the Yale University Libraries and Yale Center for British Art hosted an event to showcase the open source software platform called Spotlight (  

Screenshot of Claudia's Data Visualization

The 2016 Summer Olympics are drawing lots of attention to Rio de Janeiro. But while most people are focused on the current games -- as well as current events, politics, and health issues that might impact the games -- others have been spending their time delving into the history of this more than 450 year-old city. And Stanford Libraries' own Claudia Engel couldn't resist dipping her hand in either.