“In an effort to make artifacts from cultural heritage institutions more accessible to all, Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), the national aggregator of digital heritage collections, and the Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit that operates Wikipedia and other free knowledge projects, are collaborating to incorporate DPLA’s cultural artifacts into Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects. Funded by a generous grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, this collaboration will expand the availability of artifacts such as books, maps, government documents, photos, and more from U.S. cultural heritage institutions across the web. …”
“You may know January 1 as New Year’s Day, but it is also the day that new works shed their copyright constraints and become available for free reuse. Works from 1924 become public domain in 2020, including Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue,” A. A. Milne’s When We Were Very Young, and the first film adaptation of Peter Pan. The public domain allows works to be broadly read, performed, remixed, and adapted as part of our shared cultural heritage.
To contribute to the celebration of the public domain, the MIT Libraries is digitizing 10 books from 1924 from the Libraries’ collections. This year we selected works that show a glimpse of what it was like to be a woman in academia in the early 1900s. Read about early women scholars at MIT in class reunion books from the 1890s, and see what women were publishing in 1924.
The 10 new works will join the MIT Libraries Public Domain Collection later this month, where they will be freely available to read in their entirety. Look out for news posts throughout January highlighting these interesting works. You can also join us in celebrating the public domain at two upcoming events:
Join us for lunch and learn more about the public domain at the Is it in the Public Domain? IAP session on January 7.
Learn how to enhance Wikipedia using public domain materials at our Wikipedia Public Domain Day Edit-a-thon on January 15….”
“It got better as the internet got worse….
This was the decade we learned to hate the internet, to decry its impact on our brains and society and to detest the amoral organizations that dominate it. Facebook steals our data and abets Trump’s lies. Amazon is a brick-and-mortar–crushing behemoth, like the Death Star but successful. Instagram is for narcissists. Reddit is for racists and incels. Twitter verifies Nazis. Amid this horror show, there is Wikipedia, criminally under-appreciated, a nonprofit compendium of human knowledge maintained by everyone. There is no more useful website. It is browsable and rewards curiosity without stealing your preferences and selling them to marketers. It is relaxing to read. …”
“Today, the Turkish Constitutional Court has held that the more than two and a half year access ban of Wikipedia in Turkey was unconstitutional. We hope that access will be restored in Turkey soon in the light of this new ruling from Turkey’s highest court and will update this statement if we receive notification that the block has been lifted. We join the people of Turkey, and the millions of readers and volunteers who rely on Wikipedia around the world, to welcome this important recognition for universal access to knowledge….”
“Turkey’s Constitutional Court ruled on Thursday that a more than two-year block on access to online encyclopaedia Wikipedia in the country is a violation of freedom of expression.
The ruling opens the way for lifting the website ban, which has been in place since 2017 due to entries that accused Turkey of having links to terrorist organisations….”
“In an effort to make artifacts from cultural heritage institutions more accessible to all, Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), the national aggregator of digital heritage collections, and the Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit that operates Wikipedia and other free knowledge projects, are collaborating to incorporate DPLA’s cultural artifacts into Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects. Funded by a generous grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, this collaboration will expand the availability of artifacts such as books, maps, government documents, photos, and more from U.S. cultural heritage institutions across the web. …
The collaboration will build off the Wikimedia Foundation’s existing Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons project, a multi-year effort to lay the infrastructure that will make metadata about media files within Wikimedia Commons machine-readable and easily accessible by search online. The project will help unlock collections of images, documents, and other precious cultural artifacts for easy search and reuse both within Wikimedia Foundation websites and broadly across the web….”
Abstract: In this article, we present the conceptual design and report on the implementation of Capisco—a low-cost approach to concept-based access to digital libraries. Capisco avoids the need for complete semantic document markup using ontologies by leveraging an automatically generated Concept-in-Context (CiC) network. The network is seeded by a priori analysis of Wikipedia texts and identification of semantic metadata. Our Capisco system disambiguates the semantics of terms in the documents by their semantics and context and identifies the relevant CiC concepts. Supplementary to this, the disambiguation of search queries is done interactively, to fully utilize the domain knowledge of the scholar. For established digital library systems, completely replacing, or even making significant changes to the document retrieval mechanism (document analysis, indexing strategy, query processing, and query interface) would require major technological effort and would most likely be disruptive. In addition to presenting Capisco, we describe ways to harness the results of our developed semantic analysis and disambiguation, while retaining the existing keyword-based search and lexicographic index. We engineer this so the output of semantic analysis (performed off-line) is suitable for import directly into existing digital library metadata and index structures, and thus incorporated without the need for architecture modifications.
“We’re continuing to add serial information to the Deep Backfile project that I announced here last month. I’m adding some of the existing information in The Online Books Page serials listings and our first serial renewals listings that hadn’t initially been linked in when I made the first announcement. I’ve added journals with deep backfiles from a couple more publishers (Oxford and Cambridge). I’ve started adding some new information on a few journals that I’ve heard people be interested in. And I’ve heard from some librarians who are interested in contributing more information, which I welcome, since there are a lot of journals with information still to fill in.
But we needn’t stop with librarians and journals. I’ve seen many kinds of serials written about online that potentially have public domain content, or the otherwise offer free online issues. Many of them have articles about them in Wikipedia, sometimes short summary stub, and sometimes more extensive write-ups. I’m most familiar with English Wikipedia, the largest and oldest, and recently wondered how many serials had free online issues or were old enough to potentially have public domain issues. So I decided to answer that question by building a table for that set of serials.
It turns out to be a very big table: over 10,000 serials with English Wikipedia articles that have free or potentially public domain content. That’s bigger than the combination of all the other publisher and provider tables I currently link to from the Deep Backfile page. There are lots of serials in it with no copyright or free issue information available, and it would take any single person a very long time to find such information, verify it, and fill it in….”
“Now, thanks to a new initiative by the Internet Archive, you can click the name of the book and see a two-page preview of the cited work, so long as the citation specifies a page number. You can also borrow a digital copy of the book, so long as no else has checked it out, for two weeks—much the same way you’d borrow a book from your local library. (Some groups of authors and publishers have challenged the archive’s practice of allowing users to borrow unauthorized scanned books. The Internet Archive says it seeks to widen access to books in “balanced and respectful ways.”)
So far the Internet Archive has turned 130,000 references in Wikipedia entries in various languages into direct links to 50,000 books that the organization has scanned and made available to the public. The organization eventually hopes to allow users to view and borrow every book cited by Wikipedia, with the ultimate goal being to digitize every book ever published….”