24 June 2003 Euston Road, London | British Library Conference Centre


In keeping with using the Forums as a means to keep participants up to date with the latest developments in digital preservation, the 6th DPC Forum focussed on Open Source Software and Dynamic Databases, both of which have been the subject of debate and speculation. A stimulating and thought provoking day began with four presentations on OSS.

Alan Robiette provided a comprehensive, historical overview of the development of OSS and its pros and cons. A key drawback (lack of support) was echoed in other presentations. The early stages of the MIT-Cambridge DSpace collaboration were described in Julie Walker and Anne Murray's presentation. William Nixon discussed the issues in building a network of institutional repositories as part of the DAEDALUS project at the University of Glasgow.

Jo Pettit described the work of the National Archives of their trials and pilots programme in addressing some of the practical issues they are facing. Open source software testing is a part of this programme. Demonstrations of OCLC'S Digital Archive and DSpace were provided during the lunch break.

The afternoon session had three presentations on archiving dynamic databases. Peter Bunemann's presentation was on archiving scientific data and referred to the tension between preserving scientific data frequently, which is space consuming, and infrequently, resulting in delays. Experimental work being undertaken on data structures offers some promise for affordable, persistent scientific archives.

Bryan Lawrence described the role of the British Atmospheric Data Centre, NERC's designated centre for atmospheric data and referred to the influence of the OASI model in recognising that data storage is part of a wider picture of consumers and producers, with data repositories acting as facilitators between the two. Finally Cathy Smith provided a lively update on the evolution of the BBS website and issues involved in archiving it.

9.30 - 10.00 

Registration and Coffee

10.00 - 10.10

Welcome and Introduction


Session 1 - Open Source and Digital Preservation


10.10 - 10.40 

Open Source & Commercial Software (PDF 194KB)
Alan Robiette, Programme Director, JISC

10.40 - 11.10

The DSpace at Cambridge Project (PDF 547KB)
Anne Murray, Cambridge University and Julie Walker, MIT

11.10 - 11.40

Experiences With E-prints and Dspace (PDF 943KB)
William Nixon, Glasgow University

11.40 - 12.10

The Open Source Evaluation Project at the National Archives (PDF 1.9MB)
Jo Pettitt, National Archives


12.10 - 12.30 



12.30 - 2.00

Lunch and Demonstrations
(DSpace and OCLC Digital Archive)


Session 2 - Approaches to Archiving Dynamic Databases


2.00 - 2.30

Archiving Dynamic Databases (PDF 436KB)
Professor Peter Buneman, Edinburgh University

2.30 - 3.00

Experiences with Archiving Databases in BADC (PDF 2.42MB)
Bryan Lawrence, British Atmospheric Data Centre


3.00 - 3.30



3.30 - 4.00

Ten Years on the Web: Archiving BBCi Online (PDF 632KB)
Cathy Smith, BBC


4.00 - 4.30

Concluding Discussion

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