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One thing missing or two things are confused: An analysis of OAIS representation information

Full APA Reference

Sacchi, S., Renear, A., Dubin, D. (2011, December). One thing missing or two things are confused: An analysis of OAIS representation information. Poster presented at the International Digital Curation Conference (IDCC), Bristol, UK. Retrieved April 30, 2012 from, http://www.dcc.ac.uk/webfm_send/665

Publication Abstract

We describe two alternative interpretations of OAIS Representation Information (CCSDS, 2002), and show that both are flawed. The first is insufficient to formalize a model of preservation, and the second leads to category mistakes in conceptualizing the nature of digital artifacts. OAIS claims that Data [Objects] interpreted using its Representation Information yields Information. However, we argue that Representation Information supports only the encoding and decoding of particular expressions, such as a table of numerals or a still image, into/from digital objects, such as an Excel file or a TIFF file, respectively. Preservation actions, like migrations, can only be assessed if preservation models reflect a correct, complete, and sufficiently fine-grained representation of digital artifacts. Restructuring the OAIS account of Representation Information as described above will bring us closer to this.

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