Alistair Miles

Category: digital curation

The OAIS Information Model Revisited — Part 1

Introduction & Motivation

The Reference Model for an Open Archival Information System (OAIS) is an influential standard in the digital preservation domain. It contains an information model, which lays out some basic ideas about digital information, how it is encoded, interpreted and packaged. It also contains a functional model, which lays out the main functional components that should be present in a digital preservation system.

The CASPAR Project is currently designing and implementing software components for a distributed infrastructure to support digital preservation. The starting point for the design of these components is the OAIS reference model, and in particular, the OAIS information model.

This note captures some initial thoughts on the OAIS information model, working towards answers to the following questions:

  1. Does the OAIS Information Model make sense?
  2. Can it be used as the basis for designing software components, within a UML model-driven software engineering process?

Read the rest of this entry »

Zoological Case Studies in Digital Curation – DCC SCARP / ImageStore

I’ve started work on a project investigating current practices in digital curation across a variety of scientific displines. The project is called SCARP, and falls within the remit of the UK’s Digital Curation Centre (DCC).

I’m working on a sub-project within SCARP called ImageStore, which has identified four case studies involving the curation of images, video and associated (meta)data used as primary objects within the scholarly work flow. It is entirely by coincidence that three of these case studies involve research groups at the Zoology Department at Oxford University, where I am now spending two days a week embedded in the Image Bioinformatics Research Group, and that my bachelors degree was in Zoology (at Cambridge) – it must be destiny 🙂

The ImageStore case studies are interesting – one involves videos of badgers and other species used as part of wildlife conservation studies, another involves video of tool-making behaviour in crows (you wouldn’t believe what these crows can do), another involves images of in-situ gene expression in Drosophila (fruit fly) testes, and another involves electron micrographs and tomographs (3D pictures) of Trypanosomes (they cause sleeping sickness).

Read the rest of this entry »