8.0272 Cultural Heritage and the NII (1/188)

Thu, 20 Oct 1994 23:52:59 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 8, No. 0272. Thursday, 20 Oct 1994.

Date: Thu, 20 Oct 1994 20:14:12 -0400
From: SParkinson@Getty.Edu (Susan Parkinson-Wiberg)
Subject: Cultural Heritage Crucial to Development of NII


The Getty Art History
Information Program

The American Council of
Learned Societies

The Coalition for
Networked Information


Date: October, 1994

For Immediate Release:


Washington, DC -- An alliance of major humanities and arts
organizations has issued a report calling on the federal government to
recognize the crucial value of the American people's cultural heritage
in planning the National Information Infrastructure (NII). "Humanities
and Arts on the Information Highways - a Profile," coincides with the
release of a related position paper by the White House Information
Infrastructure Task Force at a Council on Competitiveness conference
(September 7-8, 1994). The federal paper, "The Information
Infrastructure: Reaching Society's Goals," presents strategies for
applying information technologies to the cultural sector. The alliance,
led by the Getty Art History Information program, the American Council
of Learned Societies, and the Coalition for Networked Information, has
issued its "Profile" to stimulate and guide response to the
Administration's call for public comment.

"The coming information highway has the potential to revolutionize
the way we study and appreciate our cultural heritage," said Eleanor
Fink, director of the Getty Art History Information Program. "Making
the complex resources of the humanities and arts accessible on the
networks would contribute profoundly to the most difficult technological
challenges in computing."

The "Profile" is the result of an ongoing process aimed at meeting
the urgent need for the humanities and arts to gain a voice in the
planning and development of the NII. Created by working groups of
nationally recognized experts, the report defines the special challenges
and opportunities associated with digitizing cultural heritage information.
The "Profile" highlights ways in which a fully interactive and exploratory
environment would transform the NII from a link between computers to a
link between people.

Speaking for the American Council of Learned Societies, president
Stanley Katz observed that "Electronic technologies have the potential
to transform information from a scarce, inequitably distributed and
fragmented commodity into a true public good." Paul Evan Peters,
executive director of the Coalition for Networked Information, expressed
the hope that "our community-based process -- the "Profile" being the
first outcome -- will generate the type of lively and open exchange of
visions and needs that the Clinton administration is seeking."

With the completion of this landmark document, the alliance plans
to expand its base of organizational partners to encompass the full
breadth of the cultural heritage sector.

# # #

(Note: electronic copies of the Profile are available upon request
from the Coalition for Networked Information. Electronic copy can be
accessed via FTP, Gopher, or the World Wide Web [see below]. Hard copies
are available free of charge from Publications, Getty AHIP, 401 Wilshire
Boulevard, Suite 1100, Santa Monica, CA 90401 or <ahip@getty.edu>.
Editors, please note the attached description of the Profile sponsors and
names of individuals available for interviews or comment.)

To access via FTP
URL: ftp://ftp.cni.org/CNI/projects/humartiway/humartiway-rpt.Word.hqx
URL: ftp://ftp.cni.org/CNI/projects/humartiway/humartiway-rpt.ps
URL: ftp://ftp.cni.org/CNI/projects/humartiway/humartiway-rpt.txt

ftp ftp.cni.org
login: anonymous [send e-mail address as password]
cd /CNI/projects/humartiway
get humartiway-rpt.Word.hqx [Microsoft Word - BinHexed]
get humartiway-rpt.ps [Postscript]
get humartiway-rpt.txt [ASCII text]

To access via Gopher

gopher gopher.cni.org
Coalition FTP Archives (ftp.cni.org)
Coalition Projects (/CNI/projects)
Humanities and Arts on the Information Highway (Final Report)

To access via WWW
URL: http://www.cni.org/docs/humartiway/www/humartiway-rpt.intro.html

# # #

Sponsors of "Humanities and Arts on the Information Highways - a Profile"

The Getty Art History Information Program

The Getty Art History Information Program (AHIP), one of six
operating programs of the J. Paul Getty Trust, seeks to make art-
historical information more accessible to scholars and researchers
through the use of advanced computer technology. It does so by
promoting common perspectives and standards among international
institutions and organizations on projects in four general areas:
working to affect policies that will enhance access to electronic
information; coordinating vocabularies to facilitate consistent data
entry and retrieval; providing bibliographic services; and assembling
art historical databases. Among AHIPUs projects are the Art &
Architecture Thesaurus, the Art Information Task Force, the Image
and Information Standards Initiative, the Bibliography of the History
of Art, the Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals, the Provenance
Documentation Collaborative, the Witt Computer Index, the Union List
of Artist Names, and the Thesaurus of Geographic Names. The Getty Art
History Information Program, Director, Eleanor Fink, 401 Wilshire
Boulevard, Suite 1100, Santa Monica, California 90401-1455,
(310) 395-1025, ext. 1164, (310) 451-5570 fax, e-mail: efink@getty.edu

The American Council of Learned Societies

The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) is a private
non-profit federation of 52 national scholarly organizations. The
purpose of the Council, as set forth in its constitution, is "the
advancement of humanities studies and the maintenance and strengthening
of relations among the national societies devoted to such studies."
Included in the program of the Council are awards to individual scholars
to advance research in the humanities and humanistic aspects of the
social sciences, support for international scholarly research and
exchanges; activities concerned with the identification of present and
future needs of humanistic scholarship, and planning and development to
meet these needs; and organizational functions. In addition, the Council
has fiscal and administrative oversight for the Council for International
Exchange of Scholars (CIES), which administers the Fulbright program.
The American Council of Learned Societies, President, Stanley Katz,
228 East 45th Street, New York, NY 10017-3398, (212) 697-1505,
(212) 948-8058 fax, e-mail: snkatz@pucc.princeton.edu

The Coalition for Networked Information

The Coalition for Networked Information was founded in March 1990
to help realize the promise of advanced networks and high-performance
computing for information access and delivery. The Coalition was
established by three associations: The Association of Research
Libraries (ARL), CAUSE and EDUCOM. ARL is an association promoting
equitable access and effective use of recorded knowledge supporting
teaching, research and scholarship. CAUSE and EDUCOM are dedicated to
introducing, using and managing information technology and related
sources in research in general and higher education. The Coalition of
Networked Information promotes the creation of access to information
resources in networked environments in order to enrich scholarship and
enhance intellectual productivity.

A Task Force of institutions and organizations able and willing
to contribute resources and attention to the mission of the Coalition
was created in 1990 and continues to grow. This Task Force now provides
a common vehicle by which more than 200 institutions and organizations
pursue a shared vision of information management and how it must change
in the 1990s to meet the social, educational and economic opportunities
and challenges of the 21st century. Members of the Task Force include
higher education institutions, publishers, network service providers,
computer hardware, software, and systems companies, library networks
and organizations, and public and state libraries. The Coalition for
Networked Information, Executive Director, Paul Evan Peters, 21 Dupont
Circle, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036, (202) 296-5098, (202) 872-0884 fax,
e-mail: paul@cni.org