[WS-5.2] The use of software tools in documentation

Date: Saturday,29 September & Sunday,30 September
Time: 10:00 : 13:00
Duration: Half day
Place: Cultural Conference Centre of Heraklion (CCCH)
Registration : send email to  Jonathan Whitson Cloud (jwhitsoncloud[at]gmail[dot]com) or  Rupert Shepherd (rupert[at]rupertshepherd[dot]info)

The Documentation Standards Working Group invites as many collections management system vendors as possible to a round-table discussion of the past, present and – most important – the future of software tools for museum documentation. Digital collections management systems are proliferating – the DSWG is aware of over 40 systems – and are widely used in museums and other heritage organisations. They have made it much easier for these institutions to manage and disseminate their collections; but they can be expensive and complex, and our experience is that many users, whether basic or advanced, are regularly frustrated by at least some aspect of the systems they engage with day-to-day. At the same time, a series of standards has been developed by a variety of organisations (such as CIDOC, Collections Trust, and the Getty) for the documentation and management of collections; yet the uptake of these standards by collections management systems has not always been as quick or comprehensive as their creators might wish. We plan to discuss how collections management systems have evolved to reach their present forms; the kinds of tasks they are being asked to facilitate; and what pressures shape their future development. We intend to combine short papers and provocations from a variety of speakers, with discussions between the speakers and vendors. By the end of the day, we hope all participants will have acquired a shared understanding of the current challenges facing the users and developers of digital collections management systems – and, ideally, some idea of how future systems can best evolve to address these challenges.

Presenters:
Jonathan Whitson Cloud
Horniman Museum and GardensLondon, UK
Short Bio:

Jonathan Whitson Cloud spent the early years of his career with the BBC’s post production department, editing television programmes and films. During this time post production was making a speedy transition from razor blades and cellotape® to digital technology and as a result of this Jonathan developed an interest in what computing could do for knowledge organisation and knowledge management, even if he wouldn’t have recognised those terms at the time. His museum career began with Brighton & Hove Museum Service where he participated in the documentation of the collections. Aside from a two year stint as an assistant curator of decorative arts Jonathan has remained in documentation ever since; at the National Portrait Gallery, Tate, the British Museum and since 2016 at the Horniman Museum and Gardens as Documentation Manager. Being essentially lazy his obsession remains the re-use of recorded knowledge and therefor recording it so that it can be re-used.

Maija Ekosaari
Tampere University of Technology, Finland
Short Bio:

Maija Ekosaari is a specialist in cultural heritage information management. She has worked for the Finnish National Gallery and the National Board of Antiquities in Helsinki, as well as Museum Centre Vapriikki and Tampere Art Museum in Tampere, Finland. She has studied in Finland and in the United States and holds an Associate Degree in Business Administration, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Design, and MA in Art History. At present, she is pursuing a Ph.D. in Tampere University of Technology researching the documentation, accessibility, and usability of the museums' collections information. She is enthusiastic about disseminating the results of the latest research and putting theory to practice. Maija joined ICOM and CIDOC in 1996 and has served in the Boards of ICOM Finland and CIDOC. Since early 2016, she has been co-Chairing CIDOC’s Documentation Standards WG.

Rupert Shepherd
The National Gallery, London, UK
Short Bio:

Rupert Shepherd initially trained as an art historian, specialising in the Italian Renaissance, before moving into museum documentation, dabbling in humanities computing and digitisation along the way. Having managed the Ashmolean Museum’s documentation for three years, and the Horniman Museum and Gardens' for six, he has been Collection Information Manager at the National Gallery, London, since 2016

[WS-5.2] The use of software tools in documentation

Date: Saturday,29 September & Sunday,30 September
Time: 10:00 : 13:00
Duration: Half day
Place: Cultural Conference Centre of Heraklion (CCCH)
Registration : send email to  Jonathan Whitson Cloud (jwhitsoncloud[at]gmail[dot]com) or  Rupert Shepherd (rupert[at]rupertshepherd[dot]info)

The Documentation Standards Working Group invites as many collections management system vendors as possible to a round-table discussion of the past, present and – most important – the future of software tools for museum documentation. Digital collections management systems are proliferating – the DSWG is aware of over 40 systems – and are widely used in museums and other heritage organisations. They have made it much easier for these institutions to manage and disseminate their collections; but they can be expensive and complex, and our experience is that many users, whether basic or advanced, are regularly frustrated by at least some aspect of the systems they engage with day-to-day. At the same time, a series of standards has been developed by a variety of organisations (such as CIDOC, Collections Trust, and the Getty) for the documentation and management of collections; yet the uptake of these standards by collections management systems has not always been as quick or comprehensive as their creators might wish. We plan to discuss how collections management systems have evolved to reach their present forms; the kinds of tasks they are being asked to facilitate; and what pressures shape their future development. We intend to combine short papers and provocations from a variety of speakers, with discussions between the speakers and vendors. By the end of the day, we hope all participants will have acquired a shared understanding of the current challenges facing the users and developers of digital collections management systems – and, ideally, some idea of how future systems can best evolve to address these challenges.

Presenters:
Jonathan Whitson Cloud
Horniman Museum and GardensLondon, UK
Short Bio:

Jonathan Whitson Cloud spent the early years of his career with the BBC’s post production department, editing television programmes and films. During this time post production was making a speedy transition from razor blades and cellotape® to digital technology and as a result of this Jonathan developed an interest in what computing could do for knowledge organisation and knowledge management, even if he wouldn’t have recognised those terms at the time. His museum career began with Brighton & Hove Museum Service where he participated in the documentation of the collections. Aside from a two year stint as an assistant curator of decorative arts Jonathan has remained in documentation ever since; at the National Portrait Gallery, Tate, the British Museum and since 2016 at the Horniman Museum and Gardens as Documentation Manager. Being essentially lazy his obsession remains the re-use of recorded knowledge and therefor recording it so that it can be re-used.

Maija Ekosaari
Tampere University of Technology, Finland
Short Bio:

Maija Ekosaari is a specialist in cultural heritage information management. She has worked for the Finnish National Gallery and the National Board of Antiquities in Helsinki, as well as Museum Centre Vapriikki and Tampere Art Museum in Tampere, Finland. She has studied in Finland and in the United States and holds an Associate Degree in Business Administration, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Design, and MA in Art History. At present, she is pursuing a Ph.D. in Tampere University of Technology researching the documentation, accessibility, and usability of the museums' collections information. She is enthusiastic about disseminating the results of the latest research and putting theory to practice. Maija joined ICOM and CIDOC in 1996 and has served in the Boards of ICOM Finland and CIDOC. Since early 2016, she has been co-Chairing CIDOC’s Documentation Standards WG.

Rupert Shepherd
The National Gallery, London, UK
Short Bio:

Rupert Shepherd initially trained as an art historian, specialising in the Italian Renaissance, before moving into museum documentation, dabbling in humanities computing and digitisation along the way. Having managed the Ashmolean Museum’s documentation for three years, and the Horniman Museum and Gardens' for six, he has been Collection Information Manager at the National Gallery, London, since 2016