Digitization and Libraries

Digitization and Beyond: New Projects at the Leo Baeck Institute (LBI)

Description: 

DigiBaeck was launched in 2012 and is the gateway to LBI's digital collections, a growing treasury of artifacts that document the rich heritage of German-speaking Jewry in the modern era. DigiBaeck not only provides instant access to almost all the archival holdings of the LBI which include more than 3.5 million pages of personal documents, correspondence, family and community histories, genealogical materials, business records, and audio files but also to materials ranging from art works, photographs to rare books and periodicals. The presentation focuses on experiences since the launch of the portal, new challenges, insights, and new projects.

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The American Jewish Newspaper Digitization Project

Description: 

The objective of the American Jewish Newspaper project is to build “The Jewish Press in the USA” section, hosted by JPress, in collaboration with the National Library of Israel, Tel Aviv University, the MaRLI (Manhattan Research Library Initiative) partners (N.Y.U., Columbia University, New York Public Library), and additional partners. This presentation will talk about the genesis of the project and address how it was conceived. It will cover what was learned along the way, in terms of logistics, but will also explore the question: how can a number of institutions with very different cultures and resources available to them collaborate successfully? The presentation will conclude highlighting a number of planned “future developments.”

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Footprints: An Experiment in Digital Humanities

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As a result of a working group on the history of the Jewish book, four scholars got together and decided that they wanted to take their research to the next level. The result was Footprints - a database on the movement of the Hebrew book through time and space. This session will discuss the many aspects of creating a crowdsourced digital resource from scratch with no technical knowledge or funding, and the many lessons learned along the way.

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Improving Research Outcomes through Digitization of Jewish Historical Newspapers

Description: 

This presentation will address how careful digitization of Jewish historical newspapers can influence and inform new forms and fields of research. Front-page headlines, classified advertisements, marriage and death announcements, comic strips, reviews, display advertising, editorials, birth notices, photographs, and many other article types can – when digitized and indexed carefully – be used to help today’s researchers not only access this important primary source material, but crucially also understand the context in which it was written and consumed. Using examples from ProQuest’s Jewish historical newspapers collection, Mr. Baltakov will look at examples of family and scholarly research made possible through this scale of digitization project – as well the next generation of research made possible through use of the latest text and data mining techniques. 

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