Link to home page of AHDS Performing Arts


Online Collections
Creating Resources
Grant Applicants
Depositing Resources
News and Events
Out and About
AHDS Events
About Us
Information Resources
Search Site
Travel Reports - November 2006
29th Nov 2006: Sustainability Expert Seminar, London

David Robey presented a proposal for future sustainability strategy in the UK based around a 'network of centres'. There was then a presentation on the strategy of the Mellon Foundation (US) which was an interesting comparison, and surprisingly similar to AHDS policy (if not AHRC). The general opinion was that data creators actually prefer to be 'forced into' a dialogue with funding bodies to ensure project sustainability, lending strength to the idea of a partnership system with one of the centres of excellence that would form the sustainability network.

22nd Nov 2006: DCC Information Day, Glasgow

The 2nd International DCC conference drew speakers and delegates from a broad range of scientific and arts communities along with representatives from commercial institutions and technical experts. The two-day event involved a mixture of presentations, panel sessions and demonstrations to allow time for both complex issues to be raised by speakers and in depth discussion of current developments. The main issues raised were the benefits of collaboration through models such as virtual organisations, the need for the publishing community to embrace the incorporation of large datasets with research papers, and the significance of the open source / open science movement. The AHDS presented a poster and our digital preservation specialist gave a paper on modelling OAIS compliance for disaggregated services. It was a valuable conference to attend as it raised awareness of current developments in the area of digital preservation and provided an opportunity for AHDS to find potential partners.

17th-18th Nov 2006: Artech 2006, Galicia, Spain

A very interesting conference which developed AHDS knowledge of art and technology. The conference was opened by the Director of MediaLab Madrid, Karin Ohlenschlager. She talked about the nature of digital art as well as how the methods of development can affect the works being produced. Emphasis was not placed on preserving the works afterwards, but all participants seemed to be at least aware of some of the issues involved in this. Other presentations varied from simple "here's my website" affairs to complex discussions of remote spaces for artistic collaboration and interactive works. Lots of the artists were working in innovative ways with sound installations and Web projects. Particularly good presentations were "Creative Video Editing Through Evolutionary Algorithms", DiaBlu (use of bluetooth in digital arts applications) and "Some issues on Artistic and Cultural Heritage Applications". There was an exhibition of art installations in the evening in two locations across Pontevedra, all of which used technology in some way.

15th Nov 2006: Research Performance Seminar, ‘The Role of Technology in Choreography, Arts Documentation and Dissemination’, Brunel University, London

The Role of Technology in Choreography, Arts Documentation and Dissemination. Jayachandran Palazhy, the director of Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts, Bangalore, India, presented a DVD tool documenting the process and movements of the Indian formal dances he is working to preserve. NAGARIKA was a good example of the kind of integrated multimedia resource AHDS would like to encourage.

3rd Nov 2006: Audiovisual Digital Assets, the small solution, London.

The introductory session of the PrestoSpace workshop on the digital storage needs of smaller audio visual archives looked at the current state of play. Five archivists presented their projects and the difficulties they face. The different levels of understanding and digital competence among the speakers was very striking, suggesting that there is a need for general guidance to help archivists better negotiate with technical experts.

The second session centred on industry presentations of storage and preservation solutions. These talks were much more technical in content and the request that PowerPoint slides be made available was indicative of the different levels of technical understanding in the two communities. Again this reaffirms the need for free advisory services such as the DCC and AHDS to help people make informed choices. One of the main points that was raised during this session was the discrepancy between archivist expectations and technical provision: archives need technical solutions that will stand the test of time in terms of decades and even centuries whereas the company representatives saw hardware that was 7-years backward compatible as a major achievement. The final session looked into costing digitisation and preservation. Matthew Addis demonstrated some really useful tools developed by PrestoSpace to help small archives recognise what material they hold, analyse whether it is at threat of obsolescence, define priorities for digitisation and cost the work. The tools can be used at: The conference raised a number of important questions and by bringing together representatives from different communities has open up the avenues for sustained dialogue that will help overcome the challenges we face.

smaller ahds logo AHDS Performing Arts is part of the Arts and Humanities Data Service (AHDS). Copyright 2003-7.
Page last updated: 7th Dec 2006