Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

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Arcadian
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Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Arcadian » Sat Sep 05, 2020 9:26 pm

We're establishing a new, monthly virtual event - for anyone who:
  • has an interest in preservation
  • would like to get involved with the creation/maintenance of preservation websites and archives
  • owns a collection of Acorn software/hardware/literature and are willing to dump/scan items themselves, or loan items for preservation
The first such session will take place on Sunday 20th September, 6pm - 9pm 6:30pm - 9:30pm. If you would like to attend, please post below and we will issue you with the Zoom details closer to the time (if you've yet to attend an ABug Zoom meeting, please state that you are happy to receive the Zoom information in the form of a Calendar Invite email sent from the ABug Google account).

Our initial priority will be to work out:
  • what's out there that's been archived and is online, identifying active and inactive archives
  • what's been archived but isn't currently available online, identify areas of concern e.g. where only 1 person holds copies of the data
  • who has hardware/software collections containing items missing from existing archives
  • work out what we can realistically get online in a simple, navigable format - as quickly as possible.
... only then can we start thinking about fancy, all-encompassing archive websites!

Thanks, and comments welcome!


Attending
  1. Arcadian (Dave). Moderating
  2. scarybeasts (Chris).
  3. pernod (Nigel).
  4. philpem (Phil).
  5. crowly (John).
  6. flaxcottage (John).
  7. roland (Roland).
  8. Vectoreyes
  9. z0m8ied0g (Stephen).
  10. billcarr2005
  11. Zarchos (Xavier) [Discord].
  12. leenew (Lee).
  13. sPhilMainwaring (Phil).
  14. oss003 (Kees).
  15. riscman (James).
  16. trixster (Andy).
  17. steven_gilson (Steve).
For a "Complete BBC Games Archive" visit www.bbcmicro.co.uk

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flaxcottage
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by flaxcottage » Sat Sep 05, 2020 11:41 pm

I think that I had better try to join this. The technology is a bit modern for me, ha ha! I do have a tablet with zoom on it and have joined a conference before, so I know it works. :D

Don't know what a "Calendar Invite email sent from the ABug Google account" actually is but I am happy to receive it and see if it works.

Hope to see everyone Sunday, 20th.
- John

Check out the Educational Software Archive at www.flaxcottage.com

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by roland » Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:14 pm

Since I have loads of Atom documentation and software on acornatom.nl it might be useful to attend this kick-off meeting.
FPGAtom: 512 KB RAM, Real Time Clock and 64 colours
MAN WOMAN :shock:

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by VectorEyes » Wed Sep 09, 2020 12:11 am

I can't really *not* attend this one, and it's at a time that I stand a chance of attending. Please put me on the list.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by richardtoohey » Wed Sep 09, 2020 2:54 am

Hmmm, 7 a.m., Sunday morning, after my wife's 50th birthday party (dear little COVID permitting, of course).

I'm ticking the boxes of wanting (and able!) to be involved but that time isn't going to work (after a late night), but do remember I'm available to work on the LAMP/FAMP side of things, just not in large chunks of time. Can help out but don't want to over-promise and under-deliver.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by z0m8ied0g » Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:07 am

Please put me down for this.

Cheers

Stephen
Acorn... lots of Acorn... http://blog.retroacorn.net

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Arcadian
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by Arcadian » Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:49 am

Thanks, list updated up to here ...
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by billcarr2005 » Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:16 am

+1 since I guess I have a passing interest in this too :)

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6pm - 9pm

Post by Arcadian » Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:36 am

Added! :)
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Arcadian » Sun Sep 20, 2020 12:15 pm

Right, I've sent out all the Zoom details via Calendar invite email ... I've had to push it back half an hour so it will now be 6.30pm - 9.30pm. If you haven't received the Zoom details please let me know and I'll PM them to you before we begin.

There's seriously so much that needs doing on the archiving/website front etc - it would be great to see a few more people step forward to see if there's anything they can do to help. :D

I'll add some files which I've prepared for tonight shortly ...
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Arcadian » Sun Sep 20, 2020 1:23 pm

Ok, this is a bit of a 'brain dump' of rushed notes, but here are some files and other info which I'll use as 'prompts' during the Zoom later on ... I

  • Content Management System

    We're currently evaluating whether there is a CMS that, with some level of customisation, could be suitable to use for an Acorn 8-bit/32-bit software archive ... and potentially a wider-ranging Acorn 'news' page/all-rounder site (that could contain service manuals, circuit diagrams, photographs etc).

    One of the CMS products we're looking at (which was suggested to us by a forum member) is Composr. Pernod has spent a little time looking into this and will update us on his findings tonight:

    ComposrExample1.png

    I've also mocked up a sample page of how Composr (or something similar) could present a page of information relating to various tape/disc images and media scans of a title (in this case, Acornsoft Arcadians):

    SDA Mockup v2 200917-0524.pdf
    (370.79 KiB) Downloaded 33 times

    (Clearly something like this would require a fair amount of customisation!).

  • Offline (online?) file management system

    For starters, we think it may be beneficial to establish some form of simple file archive, to collate all of the currently archived Acorn-related files that are either scattered around the web, or on private user's backup drives, hard discs etc. This could also act as the 'master' / up-to-date archive of all known Acorn-related files.

    This could be Dropbox/Onedrive, a solution such as FileRun or simply a few directories on a webserver.

    There is actually a case for having the CMS (above) merely link to the core file archive i.e. the purpose of the CMS being to add flexibility for searching/presenting files, adding meta data, displaying the data (rather like the SDA Mockup v2 200917-0524 above).

    Here's an example directory structure for such a file archive, which includes all the file formats/types I could think of that I believe could/should feature (let me know what I've missed e.g. SCP format?). Note it doesn't even take into account things like documentation, packaging scans, magazines, books, photographs, video and other categories (yet!).


    Image


    Ideally each indvidual archive would have a specialist maintainer and a 'backup' maintainer - who would be responsible for vetting new submissions, checking that additions are complete/aren't duplicates, are correctly named etc.

  • What's Out There ...


    Image


    What happens if ... a website goes down, maintainers go awol or suffer poor health, a hard drive blows at the ISP and they don't have backups.

    Need to ensure that where possible - and ideally with the support/cooperation of the maintainer - all online and offline archives are backed up/shared/mirrored* ... publicly if possible, or at least restricted to known, trusted archivists if otherwise.

    *Not just file archives/site leeches etc, functioning mirrors where possible.

  • Discbeast

    Chris Evans has been working hard on (re)archiving titles with Discbeats and will have a lot to share ...

  • RISC OS archiving

    Several members have been busy archiving RISC OS software, but obviously there's still a need to be careful with regards to what is posted online, as some classic software is still being sold in updated formats by vendors.

  • Anything else?
Attachments
WhatsOutThere.png
SDA_SuggestedDirectoryStructure-Software_v200917-2000.png
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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Diminished » Sun Sep 20, 2020 1:56 pm

Arcadian wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 1:23 pm
all online and offline archives are backed up/shared/mirrored* ... publicly if possible, or at least restricted to known, trusted archivists if possible.

*Not just file archives/site leeches etc, functioning mirrors where possble.
There are certain advantages to using BitTorrent for this. There's a guarantee of data integrity, and the mirroring/sharing process is automatic; anyone who has downloaded the files is able to serve the files back up without any extra work.

There are a few downsides. People would need to leave clients running and machines connected to the Internet in order for the data to be publicly available. (You can set up BT clients on server machines, though -- I've done this before.) Also, new torrents would have to be created and re-downloaded on a fairly regular basis as the primary repository was updated, so there would be a lot of pointless re-downloading of files going on.

Still, making torrents of everything might be something to consider doing on at least a semi-regular basis.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by BigEd » Sun Sep 20, 2020 2:02 pm

It struck me that some of what this group is tackling is rather like what museums have to do. Here's some advice from The National Archives including a spreadsheet listing available software. I note they mention Collections Management Systems which is another meaning of CMS. They also mention Digital Asset Management systems. These might be useful keywords for searches.

I also found https://www.collectiveaccess.org/ which is a particular bit of open source software for the purpose. And https://www.accesstomemory.org/en/ which is another.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Pernod » Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:00 pm

BigEd wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 2:02 pm
It struck me that some of what this group is tackling is rather like what museums have to do. Here's some advice from The National Archives including a spreadsheet listing available software. I note they mention Collections Management Systems which is another meaning of CMS. They also mention Digital Asset Management systems. These might be useful keywords for searches.

I also found https://www.collectiveaccess.org/ which is a particular bit of open source software for the purpose. And https://www.accesstomemory.org/en/ which is another.
Some good suggestions here which warrant further investigation.
Diminished wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 1:56 pm
There are certain advantages to using BitTorrent for this. There's a guarantee of data integrity, and the mirroring/sharing process is automatic; anyone who has downloaded the files is able to serve the files back up without any extra work.

There are a few downsides. People would need to leave clients running and machines connected to the Internet in order for the data to be publicly available. (You can set up BT clients on server machines, though -- I've done this before.) Also, new torrents would have to be created and re-downloaded on a fairly regular basis as the primary repository was updated, so there would be a lot of pointless re-downloading of files going on.
I'm sure that once we get a credible archive together we'll be able to get a torrent up on the leading tracker for this type of content.
- Nigel

BBC Model B: ATPL Sidewise, Acorn Speech, 2xWatford Floppy Drives, AMX Mouse, Viglen case, BeebZIF, etc.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Diminished » Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:02 pm

BigEd wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 2:02 pm
It struck me that some of what this group is tackling is rather like what museums have to do. Here's some advice from The National Archives including a spreadsheet listing available software. I note they mention Collections Management Systems which is another meaning of CMS. They also mention Digital Asset Management systems. These might be useful keywords for searches.

I also found https://www.collectiveaccess.org/ which is a particular bit of open source software for the purpose. And https://www.accesstomemory.org/en/ which is another.
I do know a professionally qualified archivist. She is very good, but I don't think she'd work for free.

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by trixster » Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:16 pm

Can I grab that last spot, Dave?

I’ll only be able to jump on from about 1930/2000ish though.

Andy

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by riscman » Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:52 pm

Can I join now? Latecomer??

James (Riscman)

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Re: Acorn Preservation Team meeting #1, Sunday 20th September 2020, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Post by Arcadian » Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:14 pm

trixster I've messaged you the zoom logins on discord

riscman, xavier has emailed you the logins

anyone else? :)
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