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iPRES 2009 hosted by CDL

By Perry Willett, CDL Digital Preservation Services Manager

On October 5-6 2009, over 300 people from 22 countries attended iPRES 2009 at the Mission Bay Conference Center on the UCSF Mission Bay campus. iPRES 2009 was the sixth in an annual series of conferences devoted to digital preservation, and with the 300 attendees, the largest ever.  This year’s conference was coordinated by the UC Curation Center (the new name of CDL’s Digital Preservation Program), with the program committee chaired by Trisha Cruse.  Perry Willett was the project manager for the conference; Beaumont Yung and Rondy Epting-Day provided significant administrative support, as did Megan Amaral, CDL’s student intern from SJSU.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Moving into the mainstream.  Enabling our digital future.”  The program was packed with thoughtful and thought-provoking presentations on all aspects of digital preservation. Some notable presentations included keynote addresses by David Kirsch (University of Maryland) on public interest in corporations’ business archives; Micah Altman (Harvard University) on public archives for scientific data; and a panel discussion by members of the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Sustainable Digital Preservation and Access.

The conference was extremely successful, and we’ve received much “iPraise.” In addition to hosting the conference, this was an important opportunity for CDL to showcase our recent work on curation micro-services and web archiving, and to speak with current and potential partners interested in working with us.  The paper by Stephen Abrams, John Kunze and David Loy (delivered by Stephen) on curation micro-services was particularly well-received, with several highly positive Twitter tweets and blogposts during and after the conference.

CDL staff participated in many ways, with Stephen Abrams, Trisha Cruse, John Kunze, Tracy Seneca, and Perry Willett serving on the program committee.  Stephen and Tricia were also presenters at the conference, and Tracy and Heather Christenson gave poster sessions.  Many people served as reviewers for the program, including (in addition to the CDL staff members already mentioned) Scott Fisher, Martin Haye, Erik Hetzner, John Ober and Lisa Schiff.  Many people from UC campuses also served as reviewers and helped with the local arrangements.  Thanks to all of them for their contributions.

In addition to the scholarly program, we had a full slate of social events including the conference reception at the California Academy of Sciences on Monday evening.  During the conference, Rick Prelinger presented “Lost Landscapes of San Francisco,” a film that includes rare footage of the city from newsreels, industrial documentaries and amateur films.  A special “après iPRES” event was held at the Hi Dive in San Francisco on Tuesday evening after the conference.  The conference was part of what was informally called “digital preservation week in San Francisco,” with additional events and meetings later in the week sponsored by the International Internet Preservation Consortium, the JHOVE2 project, and Sun Microsystems.

The conference website contains the complete program, along with an archive of Twitter tweets by conference attendees, photographs from the conference and social events on Flickr, and (eventually) video, PowerPoint and full papers from the presentations.  See the Amplified Conference page for photos, blogposts and tweets.

Special thanks go to the vendors who supported the conference: Sun Microsystems, Isilon Systems, ExLibris, Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), Tessella, the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), NetApp, FileTek, Library of Congress and the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP), and DuraSpace.  Their support went a long way toward underwriting the costs of the conference.