Digital Archivists 2013-04-21

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first meeting notes

Digital Archivists group meeting notes 4/21/2013[edit]

9 people in attendence, Danny moderating introductions, danny discusses the impetus for calling the first meeting

in attendance: danny N, dany Q, felipe, john, curtis, andrew, miloh, alan, kristina

Reetz Scanner (RS)[edit]

We took a look at RS via online videos...

Quick overview video

More detailed video

Some details about RS:

Max scanning rate is 1,000 pages per hour.

It can accommodate heavy books easily up to 12 x 9 inches and 3 inches depth.

It cannot accommodate large format scanning.

Reetz offered the DIY bookscanner kit for under $500 (discounted price for Noisebridge)

There are 2 RS models operating in the Bay already: One at the Internet Archive and one at Ace Monster Toys

Some additional components are necessary including:



probably the lighting (need to check on this)


Research which items should be purchased and how much it will cost.

Figure out who will assemble hardware.

Develop user guidelines and protocols.

Reserve a member shelf to provide a physical space for the scanner.


Danny already contacted Reetz to order the scanner.

Next makerfaire is the weekend of May 18 and 19, which would be a good time to present or work on assembly (depending).

Prism Scanner (PS)[edit]

We then looked at Dany Qs Prism Scanner

Some details about PS:

PS costs more to build and has a larger failure rate than RS (~25%).

It also has a larger footprint (~4-5 feet) than RS.

It may offer a good direction for longer-term investment.

Some questions to consider for future development of PS:

What's the scope of the scanning problem?

How many hours work would it take for all possible books to be scanned by attendant scanners?

How to prevent failure rate/damage to potentially valuable books?

Content & Licensing[edit]

danny discussed the lack of availability of valuable rare books.

Mushrooms, Russia and History (1957) is one example and New Alexandria has made the book available digitally.

danny suggested scanning for users according to their own purposes (archival and reference) and to keep discussion of licensing issues in order to find ways to successfully get the content released.

kristina recommended looking at other precedents of online file sharing including the Prelinger Library and Open Library where publications can be scanned for sharing via the web. A few other examples: (archive of art, theory, and philosophy texts) and ubuweb (archive of art, music, experimental film and performance recordings).

felipe discussed a project called Sabotage in which academic texts were made available in Brazil.

miloh mentioned that scanner users could also bring ephemeral materials (e.g., notebooks, diaries, newspaper clippings, photos, etc) for scanning on a limited use basis, accessible through encryption keys given out to people from the person who made the scan. These materials could be accessed perhaps further into the future by researchers of all kinds (genealogical, sociological, artistic, etc...).


Research and share information about public domain, fair use, and copyright as guidelines for scanners. See Public Domain Chart

Discuss same issues with Prelingers, Ace Monster Toys, creator of aaaaarg, and any other individuals or orgs dedicated to this subject.

Develop documentation and FAQs for users on various issues including, but not limited to:

how to create scans

how and where to upload scans

how to secure or share scans

recommended sharing protocols


We committed to purchase the last of the diybookscanners from d. reetz.

Will work to get the remaining parts and get it built for use asap.

We're also interested in building other models of scanners with different levels of automation and capability including a large format scanner.