The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) homepage
We are excited to announce that Eric Ames, our Curator of Digital Collections, has been named to the second class of community representatives for the Digital Public Library of America! The DPLA announced the appointments on their blog today. Eric joins five other CR’s in the state of Texas and 200 others across the country as frontline representatives for the work being done by the DPLA.
The announcement was posted to the DPLA’s blog this morning, and we’re happy to pass along the word. You can find an interactive map listing all 200 CR’s by location on the DPLA site as well.
Eric Ames was appointed a community representative for DPLA on May 15, 2014.
About the DPLA
The goal of the DPLA is to bring “different viewpoints, experiences, and collections together in a single platform and portal, providing open and coherent access to our society’s digitized cultural heritage.” Building on work done by groups like the Library of Congress, HathiTrust, and the Internet Archive, the DPLA works to bring the growing number of digital collections around the country into a single, unified search platform. Imagine being able to find thousands of results for a single word search – like Waco, for instance – drawn from multiple sources around the country, all in one place. That’s the power of the DPLA.
We’re still exploring all the ways which Baylor – and our own impressive Digital Collections – can help further the work of the DPLA. For now, we’re excited to see how Eric’s work as a CR will expose the DPLA’s work (and Baylor’s own materials) to the world.
Learn more about the DPLA at their website – http://dp.la.
Just a quick post this week to update you all on a couple of the places the DPG and the Digital Collections have been popping up in the media over the past couple of months. We’re always grateful for our work to be featured in any potential arena – digital, broadcast or print – and we thought we’d take this opportunity to share with our blog readers.
Baylor University Institute for Oral History Introduces Online Audio Files
Baylor professor Robert Darden restoring vanishing black gospel music
Vast New Additions to the Digital Archive of Browning Letters
The Team (from left): Darryl Stuhr, Allyson Riley, Eric Ames, Austin Schneider and Stephen Bolech
After one of our previous posts went viral, exposing us to a much larger audience, we decided it would be a good time to formally introduce our team to the world. So, without further ado, meet the folks who scan, curate, digitize, import, outreach, and generally save the world, one scan at a time.
- When did you join the DPG? The day it was created.
- What degree(s) do you hold? From where? Bachelors of Music from Florida International University and Masters in Music Composition from Baylor University
- Where were you born? Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
- In five words or less, describe what you do at the DPG: Manage Digitization projects and infrastructure.
- Coolest/strangest/most unique item you’ve worked with at the DPG: A 1948 aluminum-core radio transcription disc in excellent condition.
- Why do you think the work we do is important? Because we share Baylor’s unique materials with the world, provide access for researchers to digitized original source materials, and work to preserve the digital objects in perpetuity.
- If you could spend the day with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why? Carl Sagan, there are billions and billions of reasons.
- Favorite bands: Foo Fighters, Mumford & Sons, Taking Back Sunday
- What do you do when you’re not at work? Spend time with wife and three kids doing fun kid stuff.
- Your favorite random fact? Hard to say this is my favorite but it is definitely random, Seinfeld (not Friends) became the first television series to get more than a million dollars/minute for advertising.
- When did you join the DPG? November 2005
- What degree(s) do you hold? From where? BA in Public Relations from Texas Tech University and MA in Museum Studies from Baylor University
- Where were you born? Borger, Texas
- In five words or less, describe what you do at the DPG: Curate. Research. Outreach. Media. Materials.
- Coolest/strangest/most unique item you’ve worked with at the DPG: Digitizing a 13th c. hymnal, hand-illustrated on vellum
- Why do you think the work we do is important? I have a full slate of anecdotal stories about why what we do is important, but it boils down to this: We make the previously semi-accessible instantaneous, which leads to new insight, new scholarship, and new understandings.
- If you could spend the day with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why? Chicago architect – and planner of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition – Daniel Hudson Burnham. If that answer confuses/intrigues you, please see Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White City. I think you’ll understand why pretty quickly after that.
- Favorite bands: The Old 97’s, Foo Fighters, Led Zeppelin
- What do you do when you’re not at work? Read, eat, spend time with my wife Amy and 2-year-old daughter Sophia
- Your favorite random fact? Lincoln Logs were invented by Frank Lloyd Wright’s son.
- When did you join the DPG? October 2010
- What degree(s) do you hold? From where? BA in Film and Digital Media from Baylor
- Where were you born? Austin, Tejas
- In five words or less, describe what you do at the DPG: Manage project flow and student workers (I know that’s 6 but I’m not counting “and” as a word =))
- Coolest/strangest/most unique item you’ve worked with at the DPG? 1920’s Football Playbook
- Why do you think the work we do is important? So people can access these items online and find useful information from them without having to handle the actual materials.
- If you could spend the day with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why? Will Smith because he is just oh so funny.
- Favorite band: The Rocket Summer
- What do you do when you’re not at work? Shopping; Get all artsy and start making things.
- Your favorite random fact? On Friends, the iconic frame on Monica’s door was originally a mirror but a crew member smashed it.
- When did you join the DPG? I joined the DPG in late July 2012.
- What degree(s) do you hold? From where? I have a Bachelor of Arts in English from Baylor University.
- Where were you born? I was born in Tifton, Georgia [aka the Deep South].
- In five words or less, describe what you do at the DPG: Manage projects for Texas Collection.
- Coolest/strangest/most unique item you’ve worked with at the DPG: I particularly enjoyed getting to see and read some of the letters between Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning and gaining unique insight into their romance.
- Why do you think the work we do is important? Society continues to advance technologically, and as a result, valuable pieces from our past are often disregarded as having little value or are left to fall apart. The DPG works diligently to make sure that the items entrusted to or relating to Baylor University are well preserved in order to benefit future generations.
- If you could spend the day with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why? It would have to be C.S. Lewis. Not only was he an incredible author, but he was also one of the wisest and funniest theologians of all time.
- Favorite band(s): John Mayer, The Civil Wars, Ben Rector
- What do you do when you’re not at work? I love to read, shop, and attempt to tackle cool projects I find on Pinterest
- 10. Your favorite random fact? The peach was the first fruit to be eaten on the Moon [since I’m from the “peach state”].
- When did you join the DPG? Joined full-time in May 2012; split time between here and Crouch [Fine Arts Library] for a year before that.
- What degree(s) do you hold? From where? Bachelor of Music from Baylor and Master of Library Science from UNT
- Where were you born? Victoria, TX (grew up in Yoakum, TX)
- In five words or less, describe what you do at the DPG: Digitize audio and video materials
- Coolest/strangest/most unique item you’ve worked with at the DPG: I digitized a bunch of cassettes of David Koresh’s phone conversations with hostage negotiators.
- Why do you think the work we do is important? I think that the materials we work with (most of them at least) are an important part of our cultural heritage, and many of them are in danger of being lost because of degradation or obsolescence.
- If you could spend the day with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why? President Obama, because I’m really curious what the average day of a US president is like, and he seems really cool. I don’t want to play basketball though.
- Favorite bands: Radiohead and Pearl Jam
- What do you do when you’re not at work? Watch TV, cook, or work on recording and mixing music
- Your favorite random fact? I once attended a two-day, hands on, European-style hog butchery class.
We hope that gives you a better understanding of the people charged with digitizing and making available the unique resources of Baylor University’s special collections, libraries, and institutes. If you have any questions for us, leave them in the comments, or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Photos from the fine folks at Baylor University Marketing and Communications – Photography.