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Re: [ARSCLIST] Request for Images of Audio Formats - general format and decay

Hello, Tracy,

I assisted in a small way with Indiana and Harvard Universities' FACET tool which does this.

I really think it's a good idea to evaluate FACET before undertaking the construction of a new tool.

As one of my technical friends says, "One of the nice thing about standards is we have so many!" In this case, in my opinion fewer standards would be better. In that way, funding organizations could make meaningful decisions across collections based on uniform evaluation metrics.

We also have another program coming from Columbia University that has been a long time in development. FACET was in development about three years and while complex in its underlying structure and detail, is easy to use. I have yet to see the Columbia U. tool.

Feel free to harvest any pictures from my website that are not credited and in articles authored by me as long as you provide credit including URL www.richardhess.com/tape/

The photos are mostly at www.richardhess.com/notes/

FACET can be found:

Date:         Mon, 24 Mar 2008 11:58:03 -0400
From: "Casey, Michael T" <micasey@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: [ARSCLIST] FACET release

Dear ARSCLIST members,

The Sound Directions project team is pleased to announce the release of FACET--the Field Audio Collection Evaluation Tool--to aid selection for preservation. Below you will find the official "press release" with details on how to download the software and accompanying documents. We hope that you find the FACET package useful in your work.

Mike Casey

Mike Casey
Associate Director for Recording Services
Archives of Traditional Music
Indiana University


Co-Chair, ARSC Technical Committee

FACET: Audio preservation selection software

The Sound Directions project at Indiana University and Harvard University announces the release of FACET (Field Audio Collection Evaluation Tool) which is designed to aid selection for preservation. FACET is available from the Sound Directions website at http://www.dlib.indiana.edu/projects/sounddirections/facet/index.shtml

FACET is a point-based, open source software tool that ranks audio field collections based on preservation condition, including the level of deterioration they exhibit and the degree of risk they carry. It assesses the characteristics, preservation problems, and modes of deterioration associated with the following formats: open reel tape (polyester, acetate, paper and PVC bases), analog audio cassettes, DAT (Digital Audio Tape), lacquer discs, aluminum discs, and wire recordings. This tool helps collection managers construct a prioritized list of collections by condition and risk, enabling informed selection for preservation.

The FACET package consists of the following:

§ FACET software
§ FACET Procedures Manual. This is a guide to using the FACET software and an exploration of the preservation selection process
§ FACET formats document entitled Format Characteristics and Preservation Problems with 92 pages and 47 photographs detailing characteristics of, and preservation problems with, the various audio formats treated by FACET
§ Sample FACET worksheets. Paper worksheets for gathering data before using the software

For further information on the Sound Directions project:

At 11:33 AM 2008-04-29, Tracy Popp wrote:
Dear ARSC List Members:

I am a research assistant working on the University of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaign's Audiovisual Self Assessment Program (AVSAP) project.
Broadly, the basis of the project is to design a graphically-based computer
tool that mid-to-small sized cultural institutions can use as a guide to
assessing audiovisual collections. More information regarding the project
can be found on our website: http://www.library.uiuc.edu/prescons/AVSAP.htm

We are currently in the beginning stages of design and gathering content.
Currently, we have a strong textual foundation and are now moving on to the
stage of collecting visual elements for our tool.

This is where my call for assistance from the listserv community comes in. I
would like to know if anyone has any images or photos (high resolution and
high quality preferred) of:

-general formats (e.g. wire, cylinder, disc, open-reel magnetic media, etc.)
-decay in formats (e.g. tape which has succumbed to sticky shed, discs
coated with palmitic acid, known problematic tapes, etc. )

If you have images you'd be willing to share for this project please contact
me off list at:

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me as well.
Thank you for your assistance!

Tracy Popp
Graduate Assistant AVSAP
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Richard L. Hess email: richard@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Aurora, Ontario, Canada (905) 713 6733 1-877-TAPE-FIX
Detailed contact information: http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm
Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.

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