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Project Meeting, 23 October 2014

Jonathan Blaney, Josh Cowls, Helen Hockx-Yu, Eric Meyer, Peter Webster
Apologies: Ralph Schroeder, Jason Webber, Jane Winters

1 Minutes of the previous meeting

Accepted as an accurate record.

2 Matters arising

Jaspreet Singh had written a post, which had been added to the project blog the previous day.
The group agreed that a discursive blog post on the researchers’ topics and progress would be useful. A report on the Hanover meeting would also be good to put on the blog.
Kathryn Eccles has agreed to be on the ethics round table at the December conference. There was some discussion about what the optimum size for this was and whether we had enough speakers.
The group discussed conferences in the summer of 2015 at which the project might be presented.

3 Institutional updates

3.1 IHR

A venue is being sought for a conference dinner for the RESAW project, to be paid for by Aarhus.
After feedback on the first film, the script has been revised and the audio re-recorded. The second script has been revised and its audio track recorded as well.

3.2 BL

The team has been fixing the bugs that have been reported.
In 2015 the BL will revamp all of its web archive front end and infrastructure, bringing all web archives within a single domain. The current site will stay live but will not be made into a production system in situ. There are two choices for remaining work on the project: to do more prototyping or more polishing of existing functions. The team has decided on the former and so will not address performance issues with full-text search now. The group agreed that this was a sound approach.
The BL is still doing the second domain crawl, because of new software releases by the Internet Archive. The group agreed that someone other than the IA ought to take some responsibility for developing software.

3.3 OII

OII researchers are working on several things: the BBC; the linked Jisc data. The OII is also interested in research Trip Advisor and asked if the BL could provide this data. The OII and BL will look into what is required.
An interesting example of a surprising result of link analysis was given: the OII had been looking at the BBC’s links and found a predominance of links to the .us domain. The team eventually realised that these came from the time when the BBC routinely put del.icio.us buttons on its pages.

4 Communication and publicity

There has been some journalistic interest in the project but nothing was definite.
On 3 November the IHR’s Digital History seminar will be on the project, with presentations by Peter Webster, Gareth Millward and Richard Deswarte.
The group discussed whether a final researchers’ meeting in January would be a good idea and it was agreed to poll the researchers and find out if they would like such a meeting.

5 Being Human Festival: the logistics

The Festival is being widely publicised and so it was expected members of the public as well as university staff and students will attend on the day.
The group discussed what equipment would be needed for talks and demonstrations; for the latter laptops with fast internet connections would be needed but for the former only the usual AV facilities, including sound, would be required.
The BL team agreed that the they would not make changes to the system in the preceding days, to ensure that it is in the most robust possible state for public demonstration.
It was agreed that the bursary holders should be asked to attend and help out with the demonstrations if they wished to.

6 December conference

Registrations were at 30, which was acceptable but more dissemination was required.

7 Advisory Board meeting

A date had been fixed for the morning of 17 February. The group agreed the same format as the previous board meeting: a project meeting at 9.30 and the Advisory Board to join at 11.00.

8 The book

The group discussed approaching UCL Press, where there would be an open access fee of £5,000 but there would be a quick turnaround. There are various possibilities for funding, including another project at the OII which is related. The group agreed that that open access would make the book more visible and was consonant with what was undertaken in the application.

9 Future funding applications

The group discussed possible applications to the AHRC and whether it might be possible to approach the IIPC.
The possibility of a workshop at the DH summer school in Oxford was raised: the options were either a one-off session or a whole week.

10 Any other business

Richard Deswarte is applying to the CHASE consortium for an event to be held at the BL next year, in around May or June.