From the Hub, March 2017

Dear Missouri DPLA Enthusiasts,

Welcome to the first Missouri Hub e-newsletter! As we mature as an organization and grow in numbers, we hope to achieve several goals by sending this newsletter on a quarterly basis:

  1. To inform you of important and interesting developments at the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) nationally;
  2. To highlight learning opportunities for those engaged in digitization work;
  3. To increase transparency of the Missouri Hub Steering Committee; and
  4. To shed light on the collections and activities of Missouri Hub partner organizations.

Because of your interest, activity and perseverance over the last couple of years, Missouri Hub now feeds more than 150,000 items from 102 contributing institutions into the national DPLA platform (browse now!). We hope that this line of communication strengthens our Hub and increases awareness of the terrific work happening in Libraries, Museums, Archives and other institutions all across Missouri.

Dave LaCrone, Missouri Hub Steering Committee Chair & Digital Branch Manager at Kansas City Public Library.

Featured content

St. Patrick’s Day, University of Missouri School of Journalism Scrapbook, P0162Date: ca. 1913

Contributing institution: The State Historical Society of Missouri

View online at DPLA:

Notes from January’s Open Call

Notes from January’s open call are available via Google Docs.  In addition to the regular business meeting, Shannon Davis and Micah Zeller from Washington University Libraries gave a presentation about, DPLA’s new approach to identifying copyright and reuse abilities for the objects we share.


Tech Notes:  A Digest On Ingestion

The MissouriHub/DPLA ingest process is, on the face of it, fairly simple. Take OAI data records from each partner; map each record to the MODS standard; and provide the records as a new OAI feed to DPLA.  Where it gets tricky is when there are hundreds of thousands of records involved.  Processing that many records – whether at MissouriHub or at DPLA – can take a lot of time.  At a recent DPLA Hubs call, DPLA technical staff explained that it is taking about 88 hours (nearly four days) to process a batch of 500,000 records — and this is on the “new” ingest system.  Since it takes so long to process batches of records, it makes troubleshooting that process very difficult. If something goes wrong in the batch process, it means finding the problem, fixing it and running the batch again — another four days later you can see your result.  As a consequence, troubleshooting a data ingest can only be done during the few months between each scheduled ingest.

Given the time it takes to process records with the “new” ingest system, DPLA has decided to move hubs back to the original ingest system (a system that processes records in about half the time, but with little error reporting).  At the last Hubs call, DPLA staff announced that they are working hard to remedy this problem.  To that end, they have recently hired a new programmer who has experience working with ‘big data’.  He claims that he has a strategy to process 500,000 records in under an hour.  Many of us are anxious to hear about the details of this ‘newest’ ingestion system.  I hope to give you more details after DPLAfest in April.

David Henry, Missouri Hub Technical Committee Chair & Web Developer at Missouri History Museum.


Launch of & call for volunteers

The Communications Committee has been hard at work outlining a communication strategy for Missouri Hub.  Our working priorities have included improving our internal communications between partners and telling the story of Missouri’s rich cultural heritage through the Missouri Hub web site and social media platforms. The launch of this newsletter for our partners coincides with the launch of our new web site, now online at The MOHub web site is intended to be a central gathering point for all documents and information related to the Hub and its operations, including information about our partners and committees, and links into our content at DPLA.  Take a moment to browse through the site and please send any feedback using the “Contact Us” link at the bottom of the site.

But there is still work to be done and we need your help!  Before we can really dig into the fun work of promoting Missouri Hub collections through social media, we need more Communications Committee volunteers.  Our committee meets quarterly by phone or Google Hangout, minimizing travel & expense, and we have a lot of fun doing this work!  If you are interested in volunteering on the Communications Committee, please send me an e-mail at [email protected].

Many thanks to the team of volunteers who have worked together to guide the Missouri Hub communications plan and web site, including Lori Kupsky (Saint Louis University), Genevieve Podleski (Federal Reserve Bank STL), and Lisa Thorp (St. Louis Public Library).  THANK YOU!

Chris Freeland, Missouri Hub Communications Committee Chair & Associate University Librarian at Washington University.


Upcoming missouri hub presentations

Missouri Conference on History, Springfield IL – March 22-24, 2017

Staff from Kansas City Public Library, Lincoln University, Springfield-Greene County Public Library, and the St. Louis Mercantile Library will describe projects at “Digitization showcase – Recent projects funded by the Missouri State Library.” Their presentations will be followed by information about Missouri Digital Heritage and DPLA, comparing the two discovery platforms.

DPLAfest, Chicago, IL – April 19 (Hubs only), 20-21, 2017

Micah Zeller from Washington University Libraries will be participating in a panel about adopting

Chris Freeland from Washington University Libraries will be participating in a panel about library collaborations across sectors (public, state, academic):

MOBIUS, Columbia MO – June 5-7, 2017

Staff from Washington University and the Missouri History Museum will talk about DPLA’s Rights Statements project and describe methods of bringing rights statements for legacy digitization projects in line with the upcoming standard.


Next Open Call: May 4 at 9 a.m.

Topics covered: Recap of DPLAfest, other new business