Actions and Detail Panel
Learning the lessons of working with the British Library’s Digital Content...
Mon 10 April 2017, 13:00 – 16:00 BST
A workshop organised by British Library Labs and UCLDH as part of the British Library Labs Roadshow (2017).
A series of presentations exploring the British Library's digital collections, how they have been used and the lessons learned by working with researchers who want to use them. This will be followed by discussions and feedback around potential ideas of working with the Library's data.
The Roadshow will showcase examples of the British Library’s digital content and data, addressing some of the challenges and issues of working with it, and how interesting and exciting projects from researchers, artists, educators and entrepreneurs have been developed via the annual British Library Labs Competition and Awards. This year we intend to focus on some of the lessons we have learned over the last four years of working with the Labs, promote our awards and get attendees thinking of what they might do with the British Library's collections. The team will also talk about future plans at the Library to support Digital Scholarship. The day will include presentations from the researchers who are thinking creatively about what it means to be a digital historian in the twenty-first century.
Date and Time:
Monday 10th April 2017, 1300 - 1600
IAS Common Ground, G11, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building, UCL, WC1E 6BT
Please refer to the following map detailing how to get to the event.
BL Labs Roadshow (2017)
The British Library Labs project has been running since 2013 and the Labs team visited UCLDH last year. The team will reflect on the lessons they have learned over the last four years and focus on some of the typical questions researchers first ask and the common misconceptions they have when wanting to work with the the British Library's digital collections and data. They will also provide examples of what researchers were able to actually achieve and the challenges they faced.
Hundreds of thousands of digital items and objects are being created and collected for researchers to use such as digitised manuscripts, sheet music, newspapers, maps, archived websites, radio, performances, TV news broadcasts, and artworks, as well as the more expected items like scanned versions of books.
This wonderful cacophony of content is having a significant effect on how institutions like the British Library support the research needs of their users. Will people discover new information when they are no longer restricted to viewing a single page from a single book at a time? How can the British Library build systems that provide a coherent route across its content, regardless of whether it is a televised news report or a unique signature drawn in the margins of a map? How can we use crowd-sourced information, computer vision and machine-learning techniques to provide people with better tools to better judge and interpret the context of illustration or work? How can we exploit animations and interactive infographics to better convey the information found in our holdings?
This is the research space that British Library Labs explores and we want to encourage researchers to work with us and share their research questions and innovative ideas around this.
What is British Library Labs?
The British Library Labs project supports and inspires historians to use the British Library’s incredible digital collections in exciting and innovative ways for their research, through various activities such as competitions, awards, events and projects.
Labs will highlight some of the work that they and others are doing around digital content in libraries and also talk about ways to encourage researchers to engage with the British Library.
Labs will discuss the annual BL Labs Awards which recognises outstanding work already completed, that has used the British Library’s digital collections and data. This year, the Awards will commend work in four key areas: Research, Artistic, Commercial and Teaching / Learning.
What have we learnt over the last for years of Labs
An examination and reflection on the lessons the Labs team have learned by working with those who have wanted to use the over the last four years.
Presentation from UCLDH
Presentation from UCLDH
British Library data and collections and discussions and feedback on ideas, challenges and issues.
Labs will give an overview of some of the Library's digital collections and lead on a discussion on how they can be used. The team will also give feedback on ideas delegates might have on using the collections.
Feedback for the event
Please complete the following feedback form.
Mahendra Mahey, Project Manager of British Library Labs.
Previous to Labs he was at UKOLN (University of Bath) working for 4 years on the Jisc funded the UK Developer Community Supporting Innovation (DevCSI) initiative (organising several Developer Happiness” conferences (dev8d.org)) and 5 years together on a project focussing on how academic institutions could manage their research information using a common metadata standard and one supporting research in digital repositories of scholarly outputs. He was an adviser for the Jisc Regional Support Centres encouraging academics / librarians to use electronic learning resources and make effective use of e-learning technologies and techniques in their practice. He also worked as a lecturer for over 10 years in Social Sciences, Computing, Multimedia and English for Speakers of Other Languages in Further and Higher Education internationally.
Ben O'Steen, Technical Lead of British Library Labs.
Previous to working for Labs he was a freelance developer in the academic sector. While his expertise lies in solving interesting problems using computers, his formal training is in chemistry: He has authored a Physics GCSE training course, created electronics for art installations, co-founded the “Developer Happiness” conference (dev8d.org), and he was the lead developer in the Bodleian Library’s Research and Development department building their Resource Description Framework (RDF) - powered repository and digital asset management systems. In recent years, he has worked on Jisc funded projects (OpenBibliography, OpenCitation), wrote reports for funders on topics such as text-mining and sat on technical advisory boards for the Web-service Offering Repository Deposit (SWORD) protocol , ORCID and other groups.
David Beavan is Senior Research Associate, Faculty of Arts & Humanities. Research Manager for the faculty and Associate Director for Research for UCL Centre for Digital Humanities (UCLDH).
He manages the development of the extensive Faculty and UCLDH research project portfolio, where he works with researchers, developing ideas and strategies while providing assistance at all stages of project planning and organisation.
David’s professional involvements include being a member of the Peer Review College and a Technical Reviewer for the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), and he is a member of the British Computer Society (MBCS). Until recently he has served as an elected member of EADH: the European Association for Digital Humanities as Membership Officer. David also served as Membership Officer for the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organisations (ADHO).
David has been active in the Digital Humanities community for over 10 years, delivering cutting-edge online Arts and Humanities resources for scholarly research as well as public access. His areas of interest focus on adding value to resources and data-sets, enabling new avenues of research through new and emerging technologies and the promotion of digital resources to wider audiences through public engagement and even stand-up comedy.