The Old Scholar's Historical Thoughts

November 1, 2009

Preserving our Work

Filed under: Uncategorized — theoldscholar @ 3:56 pm

Maintenance is the hardest and most expensive portion of an Information Technology project. When computers first came on the scene the rule of thumb was that the development of a program/system was about 1/10th the total cost. Maintenance was the expensive part of computer software. Bill Gates changed that by making maintenance and upgrades a profit center instead of a cost center. The cost and effort is still there, but now the consumer pays for it, not the manufacturer.

My project is only useful if it is current. If the site becomes “The Place To Go” for the latest and greatest knowledge of metadata standards for historians, it has to have the latest information. One of the sites we looked at this week was “ The NINCH Guide to Good Practice in the Digital Representation and Management of Cultural Heritage Materials” I was pleased to see they has a specific section on “Metadata.” Actually, I was scared because this promised to be what I thought my project was supposed to be. Anyways, I went to that site and went down some of their links. What did I find? ONE OF THEIR LINKS IS BROKEN. (The one to MPEG-7)  Keeping web sites up-to-date is a never ending process.

I figure I can solve my maintenance problem by making the project a resource provided by the CHNM and then let them worry about it. (Sounds like a good idea to me 😉 )

Actually, that’s not far off. I would hope to have my grant be sponsored by GMU and work with the standards group of the W3C, in a cooperative endeavor. They are the ones working with the Semantic Web and have a users group that is developing just these types of standards. If this site could become part of the W3C overall effort, the community would have a vested interest in perpetuating and keeping the data current.

The second stage of the project – the development and melding of standards is a long term project that will only succeed as part of a consortium of W3C, the NINCH and all the other standards and governing bodies that are out there. These bodies are more than willing to participate in projects, if they see concrete results and a benefit to themselves. Therefore, an important component of the grant application, will have to be the marketing of the idea to these other organizations and the benefits they will receive by participating.


1 Comment »

  1. As usual, you have a great plan. I love your project idea!

    Comment by lprice3 — November 1, 2009 @ 8:47 pm | Reply

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