Notes from Megameeting 9th June 2008


BarbaraSierman Koninklijke Bibliotheek, Netherlands
CandidaFenton HATII, Univ Glasgow
JohnGarrett GSFC
KatiaThomaz INPE, Brazil
MarieWaltz Center for Research Libraries
MarkConrad NARA
RobertDowns CIESIN, Columbia University
SimonLambert STFC

The discussion was entirely by typed chat except for some conversation at the end, so the transcript below is close to a complete record.

Progress made: Sections B3.3 and B3.4 of the working document were discussed and revisions were made. It was decided to drop any reference to change logs in the examples section of B3.4.


  • Nothing specific.

Next meeting: Discussion of Mark Conrad's proposed changes to B.2 and David Giaretta's analysis of Appendix 5 vs the B.3. requirements.

Mark Conrad >> (All): We are at B.3.3. and we have a comment from Barbara.
Mark Conrad >> (All): I disagree with her comment. I think the sentence is ok as written. What do you think?
SimonLambert >> (All): I think the original text is more vivid.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Anyone else?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok as it is
Marie Waltz >> (All): It seems fine to me. 
RobertDowns >> (All): fine with me
candida fenton >> (All): fine
Mark Conrad >> (All): OK. I will strike her comment. The next comment is from John.
Mark Conrad >> (All): I would suggest adding John's text to the  section, but leaving the other text in the section where it is. Comments?
SimonLambert >> (All): I agree with that.
Marie Waltz >> (All): I agree too
RobertDowns >> (All): I agree, but we need to turn it into a sentence
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok for me
Mark Conrad >> (All): It doesn't need to be a sentence. The other items in this section are just phrases. 
RobertDowns >> (All): ok, that's fine, too.
Mark Conrad >> (All): The next comment is from Barbara. I am not sure if she is suggesting that we add text or if she is just making a comment.
RobertDowns >> (All): Registries might be one of many ways to do this.
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i think it is only a comment
Mark Conrad >> (All): Registries of preservation plans? Do any of these exist?
RobertDowns >> (All): I suspect that the comment was referring to format registries.
Mark Conrad >> (All): I agree with Katia. I would propose striking Barbara's comment.
Marie Waltz >> (All): I'm guessiung, but  I think she just wants to add additional types of examples, such as registries as they become general practice when auditing
Marie Waltz >> (All): guessing!
KatiaThomaz >> (All): but this is nost an example here...
Mark Conrad >> (All): Does anyone object to striking Barbara's comment?
Marie Waltz >> (All): No
KatiaThomaz >> (All): no
RobertDowns >> (All): no
candida fenton >> (All): no
SimonLambert >> (All): No
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. The next comment is from John. Does the 1st sentence of the Discussion section need additional amplification or clarification?
RobertDowns >> (All): I agree with John's comment about the first sentence under Discussion.
RobertDowns >> (All): Is the sentence saying that plans for converting between formats are not sufficient.
Mark Conrad >> (All): What if we added a 2nd sentence like, The repository must periodically review it's policies and the technology environment to make sure it's policies continue to be viable.
Marie Waltz >> (All): I like that sentence.
RobertDowns >> (All): That would be an improvement
Mark Conrad >> (All): I think the 1st sentence is saying that  Y may become a bad choice as time goes by.
KatiaThomaz >> (All): but B3.3 is about changes
KatiaThomaz >> (All): and the discussion is about the plan itself
Marie Waltz >> (All): Is it saying it is not sufficient to switch to y but y must be the best choice?
RobertDowns >> (All): So, it appears to be saying that static plans are not sufficient, alluding to the need for flexible plans
Mark Conrad >> (All): How about, The repository must periodically review it's preservation plans and the technology environment and, if necessary, makes changes to those plans to ensure their continued effectiveness..
Marie Waltz >> (All):  Yes, that captures it.
RobertDowns >> (All): That seems clear to me
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok for me
candida fenton >> (All): ok
Mark Conrad >> (All): Any objections?
BarbaraSierman >> (All): Ok for me too 
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. Shall we move on to B3.4.?
Marie Waltz >> (All): yes
KatiaThomaz >> (All): yes
BarbaraSierman >> (All): Is "holdings" the right term?
BarbaraSierman >> (All): Should not it be "digital objects"?
Mark Conrad >> (All): We could substitute digital objects for holdings. Does anyone object to that?
Marie Waltz >> (All): No objections
RobertDowns >> (All): no
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i didn´t understand the question...
Mark Conrad >> (All): In the first sentence of the Supporting text section, Barbara has suggested that we substitute "digital objects" for "holdings."
candida fenton >> (All): Is the term 'holdings' used elsewhere? I am wondering about consistency.
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i see holdings not digital objects...
Marie Waltz >> (All): Holdings is used in B4.3, B6, B6.4 
Mark Conrad >> (All): Holdings is used elsewhere in the document.
Mark Conrad >> (All): So what should it be digital objects or holdings?
BarbaraSierman >> (All): I suggested the change because digital object is more neutral a term than holdings (used in library world)
Mark Conrad >> (All): Holdings is also used in the archival world.
BarbaraSierman >> (All): If nobody sees any use in the change, then I would suggest to leave it as it is.
KatiaThomaz >> (All): B2.9, B2.10, B3.1, B3.2, B3.4, B4.3 and B6.4 use holdings
Mark Conrad >> (All): Any objections to leaving the sentence as written?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): no objections
Marie Waltz >> (All): no
SimonLambert >> (All): No
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. the next comment is mine. Does anyone have any insight as to what the original intent of the TRAC authors was in this case?
RobertDowns >> (All): I am not sure of the original intent, but the why could be to provide evidence of the effectiveness of its capabilities.
RobertDowns >> (All): or potential effectiveness
Mark Conrad >> (All): Is the sentence that is there sufficient for that purpose?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): frequently simulations?
Marie Waltz >> (All): I think the sentence is too generic, maybe somethign more like this? This is necessary as repositories must be able to show that policies are being adhered to and preservation is being actively practiced.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Katia, Where are you suggesting that text be added?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i am thinking about the requirement. what is behind it...
Mark Conrad >> (All): I believe the first sentence of the Supporting Text section explains what is behind the requirement.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Marie, I am not sure your sentence addresses the effectiveness of those activities.
Marie Waltz >> (All): OK
Mark Conrad >> (All): Anyone else have any thoughts on this?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): what about the examples. are they ok?
Mark Conrad >> (All): I am not sure about the first exampl, but the other two make sense to me.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Should we leave the sentence as it is?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): what is "demonstrable track record for retaining usable digital objects over time"?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Katia, This means that the repository has a sustained history of providing access to usable digital objects over the lifetime of the repository.
Marie Waltz >> (All): is track record understandable Katia?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): if is not possible imagining good examples, it will be difficult to understand the requirement...
Mark Conrad >> (All): Can we finish with the sentence in the Supporting Text before we move to the Examples?
JohnGarrett >> (All): How can a newly formed archive meet this criteria
Mark Conrad >> (All): John,
JohnGarrett >> (All): Certainly can't show that it has done so over time, but should be able to show use of accepted practice
Mark Conrad >> (All): The first sentence of the Supporting Text specifically says, "given the age of the repository and its holdings."
JohnGarrett >> (All): You wouldn't trust the new archive as much as the old, but could still have some level of trust.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Do you have a suggested chnage, John?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Sorry, change.
JohnGarrett >> (All): Not at this time. And if this is OK for others as it is I can accept that for now.
BarbaraSierman >> (All): Sorry need to catch my train!
Mark Conrad >> (All): Does anyone object to leaving the second sentence of the Supporting Text as written?
JohnGarrett >> (All): I'm OK with it.
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i´m ok too.
Marie Waltz >> (All): Me too
Mark Conrad >> (All): Candida? Robert? Simon?
SimonLambert >> (All): It's good for me
RobertDowns >> (All): ok for me
candida fenton >> (All): ok
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. I will strike my comment. Katia, did you have some suggested changes for the Examples section?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): Designated Community polls?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): is my English correct?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Yes. I believe that it is a good suggestion as well.
JohnGarrett >> (All): I agree
RobertDowns >> (All): me too
Marie Waltz >> (All): Yes
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. I will add that. Any other suggested changes for the Examples section?
Mark Conrad >> (All): If not, shall we move onto John's comment?
RobertDowns >> (All): ok
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok
Mark Conrad >> (All): John, do you have a suggested change for this section?
Marie Waltz >> (All): Change logs?
JohnGarrett >> (All): I would suggest just dropping that sentence, unless someone can tell me what was really intended.  As it stands, that sentence could be added for each criteria.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Anyone object to dropping the last sentence in the Discussion section?
RobertDowns >> (All): no
KatiaThomaz >> (All): no objections
SimonLambert >> (All): No
Marie Waltz >> (All): no
Mark Conrad >> (All): Candida? Katia?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok as i answered...
Mark Conrad >> (All): Sorry!
KatiaThomaz >> (All): never mind
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok. shall we move on to Barbara's
Mark Conrad >> (All): comment?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): ok
RobertDowns >> (All): ok
Mark Conrad >> (All): I disagree with her comment. I do not believe the requirement as written limits evaluation of the effectiveness of the preservation plans to the Designated community.
JohnGarrett >> (All): I think the archive is making its findings based on who the Designated Community is.  The Designated Community itself isn't making the determination (except perhaps as input to Archives' decision based on a Designated Community poll)
Mark Conrad >> (All): Anyone object to striking her comment?
KatiaThomaz >> (All): i agree with Mark
RobertDowns >> (All): me too
SimonLambert >> (All): OK
candida fenton >> (All): ok
JohnGarrett >> (All): OK
Marie Waltz >> (All): fine
KatiaThomaz >> (All): flks, i must leave you now. thanks and have a good week. bye.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Marie, You said, change logs. Was that for the Examples section? What did you mean by a change log?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Bye, Katia. Thanks!
Marie Waltz >> (All): Yes, it was for the examples sections. Logs of when changes are made to the system (new piece of software is introduced)
JohnGarrett >> (All): So we're talking about change logs to show changes have been made to keep data accessible
Mark Conrad >> (All): I think that change logs is too generic to be meaningful.
Marie Waltz >> (All): Yes, just more documentation to show the auditors that you're keepign up.
candida fenton >> (All): I have to go too, bye
Mark Conrad >> (All): Bye, Candida
Marie Waltz >> (All): Well, some organization keep them, others don't.
JohnGarrett >> (All): I agree with Mark that change logs alone is too generic, but if we indicate what aspects of change are monitored it might be OK
Mark Conrad >> (All): Are you talking about a change log for policies?
Marie Waltz >> (All): No, for actual actions that are taken
SimonLambert >> (All): I have to go now.  Can someone email me the chat transcript?
JohnGarrett >> (All): For example, might be a log of conversions of one image format that is going out of use in your Designated Communities and replacement by a more modern image format.
Marie Waltz >> (All): organizations keep all kinds of logs, some for a specific piece of software, some for their entire system. 
Mark Conrad >> (All): So which types of logs are you suggesting would be useful for showing the effectiveness of  the preservation plans?
Marie Waltz >> (All): Those which show changes in the system, maybe system log would be better?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Which system?
Mark Conrad >> (All): What is the link between the "system" and the preservation plans?
Marie Waltz >> (All): The repository system?
Marie Waltz >> (All): A change log records actions taken, these actions show they are engaging in effective preservation activities
Marie Waltz >> (All): Is this worth pursing?
Mark Conrad >> (All): I am still not clear as to what specifically you would be monitoring in the system logs that would shed light on the effectiveness of the preservation plans.
Marie Waltz >> (All): It would demonstrate the preservation plan was being followed
Mark Conrad >> (All): This requirement is about the effectiveness of the preservation planns.
JohnGarrett >> (All): So something like "change logs showing changes required by preservation plan were made"
Marie Waltz >> (All): It is also about demonstrating the effectiveness.
Mark Conrad >> (All): John, Your suggestion is more along the lines of B.3.3.
JohnGarrett >> (All): But change logs shows that changes were made, not that they were effective in making the data understandable, usable, etc.
Mark Conrad >> (All): If we can't  understand what is meant by change logs, how are users of the standard going to understand?
JohnGarrett >> (All): Yes, but the changes in 3.3 are only changes to the preservation plan itself, these changes would be for the actual data holdings.
RobertDowns >> (All): evidence of some recent use could demonstrate that they are usable, as planned
RobertDowns >> (All): Of course, there also has to be interest in order to get use
Mark Conrad >> (All): Evidence of recent use of what?
JohnGarrett >> (All): Recent use would be demonstrated by use logs not change logs
Mark Conrad >> (All): Recent use of what?
RobertDowns >> (All): use of digital objects that have been preserved
Mark Conrad >> (All): Ok, but that has nothing to do with change logs.
Mark Conrad >> (All): That's more along the lines of the Designated Community polls.
RobertDowns >> (All): yes
Mark Conrad >> (All): Marie, Can you give a specific example of what you mean? specific type of log? specific preservation plan?
Mark Conrad >> (All): Marie?
Marie Waltz >> (All): I have to think and write. Say a repository is keeping their data in SPSS format. Say their version is out of date so, they decide to switch a newer version. So they record put this in a log. Their preservation policy states that they must keep their data in a version that is usable by their community. So the log demonstrates this.
RobertDowns >> (All): A search for all data is spss format also would demonstrate compliance with that plan
JohnGarrett >> (All): How about, "Change logs indicating changes to data or systems required by preservation plans have been made"
Mark Conrad >> (All): What you are describing is a change to the preservation plan. Are you suggesting a change log of preservation plans? Presumably these would be maintained outside the system.
JohnGarrett >> (All): No I think the change is a change to the data in SPSS format, not a change in the preservation plan.
Marie Waltz >> (All): I like the idea of a change log of preservation plans, but that was not really what I meant. 
RobertDowns >> (All): We should also allow for other evidence instead of change logs if a repository does not have them
Mark Conrad >> (All): John, The decision to switch to a new ere version of SPSS is a change to the preservation plan.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Sorry, newer.
RobertDowns >> (All): I agree
RobertDowns >> (All): Sorry, but I need to go right now. Bye
Mark Conrad >> (All): A change log of preservation plans would actually be better under 3.3.
JohnGarrett >> (All): No, the preservation play says "you must keep the data in a version of SPSS that is usable to the community".  That statement in the preservation plan does not change.  However you do make changes to the data to change the format from V1.5 to V2.0 for example.
Mark Conrad >> (All): Marie, Can you hear audio?
Marie Waltz >> (All): Yes I can, but I can't talk
Marie Waltz >> (All): its hard to listen like this! I wasnt' making that distinction either
Marie Waltz >> (All): I think we can abandon it
Marie Waltz >> (All): I appreciate the extra time, and I'm sorry to cause so much confusion
Marie Waltz >> (All): bye
Mark Conrad >> (All): Bye!
JohnGarrett >> (All): Bye

-- SimonLambert - 09 Jun 2008

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