ARCHIVES 2015 has ended
Tuesday, August 18 • 1:30pm - 2:30pm
Research Forum Poster: Shell Scripting for Born-Digital Archives

Sign up or log in to save this to your schedule, view media, leave feedback and see who's attending!

This poster will visualize and display three simple shell scripts that facilitate the acquisition of born-digital archival collections from donors’ computers and streamline the creation of descriptive data for EAD finding aids. Written by two archivists at Princeton University’s Mudd Manuscript Library with no educational background in computer science, these scripts aid the Library in conforming to the Producer-Archive Interface Methodology Abstract Standard (PAIMAS) and the Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS).

Mudd archivists created the first two shell scripts, which facilitate acquisition, using basic Bash and Batch commands that form part of the default shells in Unix (Mac) and DOS (Windows) computing environments, respectively. The usage of default commands is significant because archivists can execute these acquisitions on a donor’s computer irrespective of a particular operating system, eliminating the need for donors to install any additional software. Using the default Linux (Ubuntu) shell that is packaged with the open-source BitCurator environment, Mudd archivists composed the third shell script to streamline the creation of descriptive data. This script is important because it extracts metadata from the file system efficiently and allows archivists to quickly transform this data into an EAD component listing.

Taken as a whole, the scripts have simplified the Library’s acquisition and access procedures for born-digital archives, empowering them to gain greater intellectual control of materials and provide enhanced access to researchers through richer description.

About the Authors:

Rossy M. Mendez is a recent graduate and a Public Services Project Archivist at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library of Princeton University. Her responsibilities include providing reference services, assisting with reading room operations, and working on special projects including curating exhibitions and creating description for oral history collections. She is interested in outreach, archival literacy and the representation of marginalized communities in the archival record.

Jarrett M. Drake is the Digital Archivist at Princeton University where his responsibilities entail acquiring, accessioning, and describing University Archives collections in both digital and analog formats. He currently serves on the Start-Up Committee of the BitCurator Consortium and also co-chairs the bibliography subgroup of the Access to Electronic Records Working Group of SAA’s Reference, Outreach, and Access Section. Drake’s research interests include the intersection of digital archives, human rights, and social justice.

avatar for Jarrett M. Drake

Jarrett M. Drake

Digital Archivist, Princeton University
Jarrett M. Drake is the Digital Archivist at Princeton University.
avatar for Rossy Mendez

Rossy Mendez

Public Services Project Archivist, Princeton University
I am passionate about access. I am really interested in community initiatives particularly in university repositories. My hobbies outside of archives include travel, photography and blogging.

Tuesday August 18, 2015 1:30pm - 2:30pm EDT
Room 26A Cleveland Convention Center, 300 Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44114

Attendees (0)