LC LABS LETTER
A Monthly Roundup of News and Thoughts from the Library of Congress Labs Team
Introducing the 2020 Staff Innovators!
LC Labs is thrilled to welcome Kathleen O’Neill and Chad Conrady aboard our team for the next four months as the 2020 Staff Innovators. Their project Born Digital Access Now! will explore methods for providing access to born digital materials in the Manuscript Division and prototype select tools on a digital workstation. They’re working on this project as part of an internal rotational pilot program called the Staff Innovator detail, which gives staff a chance to channel their creativity into carrying out a project of their own design to address a particular challenge or opportunity at the Library of Congress.
This interview with Kathleen and Chad on the Signal blog kicks off a Signal summer series featuring behind-the-scenes interviews with current Library staff, those moving into new positions, and new arrivals such as Junior Fellows, interns, and permanent staff who recently joined the Library. Stay tuned for more stories about the background, experience, and interests of the people that support the Library of Congress in providing enduring access to digital collections and stewarding its digital transformation.
Machine Learning + Libraries: A Report on the State of the Field
Hot off the digital press! Our latest report, “Machine Learning + Libraries: A Report on the State of the Field” is now up on labs.loc.gov/reports. Authored by Ryan Cordell, an Associate Professor of English at Northeastern, the report examines a range of machine learning applications with relevance to library work and “aims to overview the field’s major questions, cautions, and opportunities, and to advance a set of practical recommendations for cultural heritage institutions seeking to undertake ML experiments.” Check out the whole report and related experiments on labs.loc.gov.
It’s not too late! Share your thoughts about the Signal Blog
We wanted to hear from readers of the Signal Blog! We’ve gotten lots of good feedback so far and decided to extend the deadline to give more people a chance to respond. So whether you’re a long-time reader or you’ve just recently subscribed for updates, tell us what you think! To share your thoughts, please fill out our survey by August 1, 2020.
- In a GovLoop interview earlier this month, Director of Digital Strategy Kate Zwaard discusses how the Library of Congress’ digital transformation has been influenced by COVID-19. She talks, among other things, about how the Library is “deliberative about adopting new technology while having a long-term view.”
- Have you been inside the Library of Congress’s Adams Building…in 1898? Or seen the “Greco Deco” style of its Annex? Travel back in time with the new
Library of Congress Story Map to see construction, expansion and collections inside this “Handsome Box.”
- Big news from By the People: Letters to Lincoln Challenge is COMPLETE! Check out all the transcriptions that will go toward making this collection more accessible and discoverable on loc.gov at https://crowd.loc.gov/campaigns/letters-to-lincoln/. And read about how that happens through this blog post by By the People Community Manager Victoria Van Hyning.
- I spy…a map of Washington, DC from 1871! See what you can find in these Free to Use and Reuse Maps of Cities.