Therefore, virginia tech's material has been reorganized into three parts, to discriminate clearly among the following: ndltd (the project and its members student submission (including policies, checklists, training materials, and automated scripts wallpaper the searchable collection. Virginia tech students have submitted over 500 works that are included in the library's online catalog. A variety of additional services are provided on an interim basis until the collection gets larger and until distributed digital library software is tested in conjunction with other ndltd members. Thus, browsing is supported, with a separate list for recent works, as many local students are eager to have their work immediately accessible, and many outsiders look for the latest findings. The OpenText system indexes each text or pdf part of each etd, and handles full-text searching by all interested parties. Other software will index image files to support searching on image content. A number of other ndltd members already have online documents, including: naval Postgraduate School, nc state University, and University of Virginia. In addition, searches over the Internet and discussions with personnel from a variety of universities have turned up small collections of works, made available by individual departments or centers.
While such an infrastructure is not necessary to participate in the ndltd, it does improve online processing time and it enhances user access. Tools Students at Virginia tech use a variety of tools developed to help them prepare etds, thanks in part to support from sura aimed to support growth of ndltd you in the southeast. We have adopted a scenario-based design approach, and in addition to assembling commonly available inexpensive software packages, have been constructing other files and tools to support low-cost document manipulation as well as efficient workflow processes kipp97. These include: a document type definition for etd-ml, the markup scheme which has been repeatedly refined to be easy to use and yet powerful enough to capture the important metadata and structure of etds; a template for Microsoft Word to use with Microsoft sgml author. Collaboration with staff at the University of Virginia who are involved in the text Encoding Initiative (TEI) includes demonstrating interoperability between documents marked up with etd-ml and those marked up according to the tei guidelines. Collaboration with a student at Rhodes University in south Africa deals with testing many of the tools discussed above, and complements efforts underway with various institutions in the southeastern United States. Collection Institutions involved in ndltd are all working toward having students prepare etds so they can learn from that experience and at the same time help build a large and smoothly functioning digital library. The contents of the virginia tech www site are distributed on cd-rom to institutions that join the ndltd. This is intended to help other institutions provide information and access to their community.
One of the ibm systems runs oclc's Sitesearch, thanks to a license donation by oclc. Oclc is providing over a million marc records that refer to theses and dissertations from its WorldCat database. This will provide information previously not readily available since few masters theses are included in the umi database. Sitesearch supports Z39.50, which enables access through a variety of clients. It also can be adapted to provide similar functionality to dienst, so that "federated search" is afforded, with client or gateway merging of results from remote sites. In addition to hardware and software to support ndltd, virginia tech also has a rich network infrastructure, including a vbns (high speed Internet research and education backbone) connection through "Network virginia the statewide atm network that it runs and which includes educational institutions all over. Local access, so that students can submit their works electronically, is provided by the campus network as well as through the town (Blacksburg Electronic Village, t/ ).
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Further work with dienst should afford other user aqa services, especially if dienst is used to handle a large portion of computer science preprints, and is extended to manage user profiles and selective dissemination of information. Guidance for ndltd is provided by an international steering committee. The committee meets in the middle of March and September each year in Washington,. C., and has email discussion during the intervening months. Members represent Canada, uk, world Bank (African Virtual University universities and libraries in the southeast (sura, solinet western Area graduate Schools, the national Science foundation, Adobe, cni, cgs, ibm, cic (Big 10 job Accommodations Network, nsf, oclc,. Department of Education, and other constituencies. After hearing reports from umi and oclc about archival and access services, members at the march 1997 meeting decided to encourage maximizing access, allowing as many "players" as become interested to provide various services for those interested in etds.
This will be feasible if all member institutions freely share among themselves and their agents marc (library catalog) records describing their etds, and if each record contains one or more urns pointing to authentic full copies, such as might reside in a university archive. Thus, the ndltd support team at Virginia tech is working to arrange interoperability tests, building upon existing library and digital library infrastructure. Infrastructure, to support digital library activities at Virginia tech, ibm has donated a variety of hardware. One server, acquired to run ibm digital Library software, and to serve multimedia files associated with etds, has four terabytes of hierarchical storage, roughly 40,000 gigabytes-enough for about 40 million average-sized etds. Virginia tech will be hosting a user group meeting (October 20-22, 1997) for groups employing ibm digital Library systems; the focus will be on human-computer interaction issues. It is hoped that the ibm system will be extended to support gateway and federated search capabilities that will allow interoperability tests among ndltd institutions.
At present, Florida is the state with the largest number of members in ndltd. A team at University of south Florida is helping prepare an edited sourcebook on electronic theses and dissertations, having produced a call for contributions, with publication planned in 1998. The University of Virginia has taken the initiative on adapting the dienst system (developed at Cornell, and used in the networked Computer Science technical Report Library, strl. Org ) to use for etds, mOOR97. Interoperability tests with Virginia tech are planned for Fall 1997.
Access using dienst will mean that end-users will have a single view of the distributed set of etds. They can use the www to browse among the dispersed collections at ndltd sites, by author, topical area (i.e., department or year. Alternatively, they can search the full-text of metadata (including abstract) for the full collection or parts thereof,. E., issue one query to search all sites in parallel. Furthermore, the ndltd as a whole could have archival and search engines flexibly structured and located to suit economic, political, and social preferences. Universities could keep their own archive or have it managed by an archival service, and search engines could be at each university or run by state, regional, national, or other services. For performance reasons, backup and regional replication systems can be included in the overall architecture.
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At the darmstadt University of Technology, it is likely internet that interest was stimulated because of local expertise in multimedia information and systems. Etds allow students hippie to apply those technologies directly and go beyond the limits of paper theses or dissertations by including audio, image and video illustrations and by adding hypertext links. In the case of the naval Postgraduate School (nps building upon prior digital library activities. Norr97, a team of navy reserve officers studied the matter and reviewed documentation provided by virginia tech. Very shortly after a telephone conference that obtained additional information, university officials decided to join ndltd. Nps is obligated to provide access to its theses and dissertations to the navy worldwide; this is much less expensive if electronic distribution methods can be employed. This shows a clear economic benefit. During its first year, ndltd has grown to 20 members, with scores of other institutions interested and in a number of cases, visited or briefed on the initiative. An online status file is maintained to document the current situation.
Professor Jong-Min bae has come from Korea to spend a sabbatical year starting August 1997, providing further aid at Virginia tech. In addition, there are students, faculty, and staff at other universities and organizations providing assistance by testing, adapting, and extending Virginia tech's programs and processes. At the University of Waterloo, a team has been studying about etds, and prepared a survey of worldwide activities. North Carolina State University recently established an etd web site, and the University of Virginia makes available on www a student-run etd resource directory, plus pointers to publications showing student resume interest in the initiative. From these sites one can learn about investigations and pilot efforts in Australia, aalborg University, the University of Texas at Austin, and University of south Florida. We invite others involved in related efforts to provide pointers so that we may cite their work. Though it may take 12-18 months for a university to investigate the idea of etds, develop suitable policies, reach consensus, launch a pilot effort, begin to train students, and enhance local infrastructure to facilitate network submission by students, some institutions have moved more rapidly. Among those institutions joining ndltd most quickly are those in Dagstuhl, germany and Monterey, california.
Progress, as ndltd has expanded, we have seen progress in many places. For example, prompted in part by the ndltd, umi, which has the world's largest microform archive of theses and dissertations, has launched its Proquest Direct service of scanning (at 300 dpi) and using optical character recognition software to convert the scanned documents into text files. Many groups, including cgs, have established committees to explore the concept of etds. Although these deserve concentrated attention, we will focus mainly on collaborative efforts and work that is specifically oriented toward building the ndltd. Collaboration, local progress toward ndltd has been made possible as a result of efforts by the library, graduate School, funded project team, and other parts of Virginia tech. Several student project teams in courses in computer science (CS4624, cs5604) have made important contributions, assisting in the preparation of multimedia training materials and prototype digital library implementations. Students studying digital libraries (in University honors 3004 and CS6604) in Fall 1997 have already started to select term projects to assist our efforts.
Department of Education (fipse) for a national Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations, we review its origins (see. Fox96a for an overview of the project describe progress-to-date that warrants its now being called the networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (ndltd explain some of the controversy that has led to widespread publicity and dissemination, and explore future growth possibilities. The first workshop about electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) took place in 1987 with a technical focus on standards, namely applying sgml to the description of research. Ten years later, we realize that the proper aim should be improving graduate education by having students enter etds into a digital library which facilitates much broader access. Achieving that goal calls for a sustainable, worldwide, collaborative, educational initiative of universities committed to encouraging students to prepare electronic documents and to use digital libraries - ndltd. Since students often learn best by doing, this competency-oriented program should ensure that the next generation of scholars is prepared more completely for the Information Age, in which they make can apply and pass on their skills in academia or other research situations. With funding in 1996 from the southeastern Universities Research Association (sura our Virginia tech team was able to build upon local efforts, including a solid foundation of library-developed processes, to facilitate a beta program in the southeast. Additional support from fipse, and in-kind contributions from a number of sources, especially Adobe, ibm, and Microsoft, have enabled expansion to the national and international levels. Public forums afforded by the coalition for Networked Information (cni the council of Graduate Schools (cgs and many other groups, have made the idea of an etd initiative a familiar topic to hundreds of leaders at diverse universities.
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Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations: An International Effort Unlocking University resources. An International Effort Unlocking University resources. Kipp, paul Mather, tim McGonigle, william Schweiker, and Brian mattress devane. Virginia tech, blacksburg, virginia http www. Ndltd.org, project Director: Edward. Fox, d-Lib Magazine, september 1997. Issn, table of Contents. Introduction, on the first anniversary of funding by the.