Kaptur – seven months into the project (7/18)

This is our update for the end of the seventh month:

WP1: Project Management

WP3: Technical Infrastructure

WP4: Modelling

  • University of the Arts London (UAL) held its first Research Data Management (RDM) working group meeting on Tuesday 10th April; the Kaptur RDM discussion paper was amended for UAL’s use and went forward to their Research Standards and Development Committee on 1st May.

WP7: Dissemination

  • The Project Officers were asked to suggest three ways to increase the profile of the project, including: an internal event, an internal website/newsletter/email, and something innovative.
  • The GSA Project Officer has had some Web training with a view to adding information about the project to the Research Web pages; Kaptur has already been promoted on the GSA Facebook page.
  • The Goldsmiths Project Officer has given two presentations about the project on 26 April and on 2 May for Library and Research Office staff; an item will also be in the May edition of the Goldsmiths Research newsletter.
  • The UCA Project Officer gave a presentation at the Staff Research Conference about the challenges and opportunities of running an institutional repository which included information on the Kultur, Kultivate, eNova and Kaptur projects; a targeted email will be sent to faculty librarians to provide more information about Kaptur.
  • The UAL Project Officer will submit a paper for the UAL Information Services Staff Conference (September), and an article for the Library Services Newsletter.
  • Watch this space for more creative dissemination ideas, several are in discussion including events, videos, music and artwork!

4. Issues/challenges

Following the original vision of the Principal Investigator (Project Director) the collaborative aspect of KAPTUR is working really well, as in particular at this month’s meeting we were able to learn and reflect on different approaches at each institution regarding the modelling workpackage.

The challenge this month has been to select the system for the KAPTUR pilot technical infrastructure. The research method led to a short-list of five systems, all of which were similar in ‘score’ based on the user requirements, this required the application of an additional selection process. A blog post will be forthcoming about this.


Mackintosh and visual arts research data at The Glasgow School of Art

Entrance to The Glasgow School of Art. Photo MTG

Last week the Kaptur team gathered for a project meeting in The Glasgow School of Arts’ incredible Mackintosh building. Representatives from all the project partners met in the Mackintosh room (also known within the School as the Design Room):

“In 1906 Mackintosh was asked to include a new, more formal Board Room into the building and used part of an existing studio on the ground floor, to the left of the entrance. In return what had been the School’s original Board Room, a chiefly white interior on the first floor was turned into a design room. This space (Studio 37) has now reverted back to a meeting room.”

[Text on wall next to the Mackintosh Room]

Fireplace in the Mackintosh Room. Photo MTG

A photograph of the Mackintosh Room by Bedford Lemere (described as The Board Room) shows the fireplace as it was in 1910 [Buchanan (2004) Mackintosh’s Masterwork: The Glasgow School of Art, pp.114-5].

The purpose of the meeting was:

  1. for the project team to be updated about work at each institution in order to enhance collaboration and lessons learned across the partner institutions;
  2. to agree and assign tasks for promoting Kaptur internally/externally to the institutions;
  3. to discuss applicability of the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) tools for the modelling and technical work packages.

This was addressed as follows:

  1. each Project Officer reported progress on the development of the institutional RDM policies; the Technical Manager reported progress on the Technical Analysis;
  2. each Project Officer will suggest three different ways of awareness raising within their institution and this will be reported in the next Kaptur monthly blog post;
  3. we were delighted to welcome Martin Donnelly, Senior Institutional Support Officer, DCC to the meeting; it was very useful to ask specific questions within the context of the project team.

Key points to share:

  • A need for awareness raising about managing research data within the institutions through promotion of Kaptur. One of the points to engage researchers is when they ask the institution for Letters of Support for their funding applications.
  • The awareness raising needs to be clear about the differences between data storage and data curation; although the storage aspect may still be an incentive for researchers to manage their research data effectively.
  • On RDM policy development there was some discussion about the pros and cons of a small more research-focused working group compared to a larger working group which may help with embedding and take-up of the policy as well as awareness raising, but may take longer to discuss and approve a policy. Two institutions have smaller working groups and the other two plan working groups with a wider range of stakeholders. It is useful to share these experiences collaboratively.

Mackintosh and visual arts research data:

Detail of bookcase, dark stained oak with leaded glass (1901.038). Photo MTG

This bookcase was originally designed in 1901 by Mackintosh for the drawing room at Windyhill. It was presented to the School by William Davidson on the sale of Windyhill. Also in The Glasgow School of Art’s collection is a scale drawing in pencil with annotations, an example of Mackintosh’s own visual arts research data. Another example is Mackintosh’s Northern Italian sketchbook, available from the Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) and also via the project website. The research was part-funded by The Glasgow School of Art and the creation of the database was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

Left: Lake Como, Campo, Villa del Balbiano, studies of gates, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, 1891 © The Glasgow School of Art. Available from VADS: http://vads.ac.uk/large.php?uid=92819

Right: Modern photo of gates at Lake Como, Campo, Villa del Balbiano © The Glasgow School of Art. Available from VADS: http://vads.ac.uk/large.php?uid=92819&sos=0&pic3=its39p

Kaptur at The British Library


Gateway detail, The British Library (1978-97)
by Colin St John Wilson.
Photo: Steve Cadman License: CC BY-SA 2.0

The second (official) Digital Conversations @ British Library took place on Friday 30th March, hosted by the Digital Research and Curator Team (more information in a staff newsletter available via ISSUU). The theme for the event was ‘Annotation and Sharing’. It was a privilege to attend this internal staff event, and also to have an opportunity to present Kaptur, with a focus at this stage in the project on sharing (the Prezi is available here: http://prezi.com/0m_ql5don6vy/kaptur-bl/).

Brief notes about the other presentations are below:

Jan Reichelt, president and co-founder of Mendeley – “a free reference manager and academic social network” – spoke about some of the current features (e.g. annotating PDFs) and possible future developments e.g. Kleenk – a visual map of connections between your paper and other papers, described as “the first semantic network of scientific content” it has integration with Mendeley through its API. It was also interesting to hear that Mendeley’s recommended article feature has around an 80% success rate with users (based on stats from the last year).

Richard Ranft, Head of Sound & Vision at The British Library, spoke about some innovative BL Sound projects:

The JISC funded eMargin project was presented by Andrew Kehoe and Matt Gee. It’s a great tool for “underlining and colour-coded highlighting […] notes and comments” on a range of text file formats and sharing these across groups; it has features which are not currently available in other similar tools and the potential to develop further. The Birmingham School of Acting are currently using a specially developed version for iPad to annotate their scripts during rehearsals. The University of Leicester will be using the tool with their first year students from September. It is available here: http://emargin.bcu.ac.uk/

Debbie Harrison, Honorary Research Fellow, Birkbeck, University of London, spoke about the fascinating international collaborative David Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project, in particular focusing on the publication of Livingstone’s 1871 Field Diary: A Multispectral Critical Edition. The electronic publication enables researchers to compare the original diary (including pages written across 19th century newspapers) with later published versions.

Sean Martin, Head of Architecture & Development at the British Library spoke about the  International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF); a project funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to “collaboratively produce an interoperable framework for image delivery” and thereby address the issue of digital “image-based resources […] locked up in silos, with access restricted to bespoke, locally built applications”. Previous Mellon funded projects that have led to this latest development include:

  • Shared Canvas – “enables the construction of views by distributed collaborators, by annotating a shared “Canvas” resource which is then rendered using a presentation system”
  • Open Annotation Collaboration– “development of a shared annotation data model supportive of interoperable annotations”
  • Digital Medieval Manuscript Initiatives – enabling interoperable environments for digital medieval manuscripts