I’m Giving a Talk at MITH Next Week

MITH is the Maryland Institue for Technology and Humanities at the University of Maryland. They run a speaker series, Digital Dialogues, that has included some incredible presentations, not the least of which in my mind was Jason Scott on his documentary “Get Lamp” last year.

A friend of mine, Justin (@justgrimes), at UMD had been working with MITH to try to get Carl Malamud to give a talk about the International Amateur Scanning League, the public digitization volunteer effort to which Justin and I have been contributing time since last Summer. I was cc’ed as a possible alternate should Carl be unavailable.

For those that follow Carl on Twitter (@carlmalamud) you know that while he is in the DC area on a pretty regular basis, he’s almost always completely committed time-wise to meeting Congressional and White House staff for his day job, Law.gov, the effort to free the text of our body of laws for access online. I am happy to step up in his stead to speak about IASL, the volunteer based, public-private partnership that Carl started.

The folks at MITH have just posted the details of my presentation, which will be in the McKeldin Library on Tuesday the 15th from 12:30PM to 1:45PM.

“The International Amateur Scanning League, Unlocking the Federal Archives One Work at a Time” by THOMAS GIDEON

The federal government has produced and continues to produce a staggering amount of material, most of which is released directly into the public domain. The policies and processes for providing broad access in the age of the internet are still catching up both to that volume and new technologies. Experiments in public-private partnerships have been tried with varying degrees of success. Even the most successful are burdened with odd limitations and restrictions. A small group of volunteers working directly with the National Archives are trying to change that.

The talk is free and open to the public if you are in the area and can make it out. Otherwise, MITH will be recording it to release on their podcast later as will I. In fact, if I can get it edited up that Tuesday night, I should be able to release it as the feature in next Wednesday’s podcast.

There are more details, including links to directions, at the MITH event page.