Archive for 'Questions'
Cultural organizations sometimes get a bad rap for adopting “technology for technology’s sake.” This tends to happen when observers feel that the excitement and widespread appeal of a new product has eclipsed its actual usefulness within the scope of the organization’s existing mission and strategic plan. On the other hand, with the proper research, planning [...]
Question: What’s the biggest dead-end you ever hit in your research where you suddenly, unexpectedly found a way forward?
It happens to all of us. You follow one lead after another, following a thread of information that seems to link your months, or even years, of research together. Then, suddenly, the thread is gone. What do you do then? For many, this is a dead-end; all that time spent working on a topic has [...]
Question: Do you have a favorite NARA photograph or document? Is it already available in our catalog or on our website?
One of the most requested photographs at the U.S. National Archives is an iconic photo of President Richard Nixon and Elvis Presley meeting at the White House in 1970. Recently, this photograph has become more available to the public on our online research catalog, ARC, as well as through our photostream on Flickr.com. Now anyone [...]
Question: We are considering starting an ongoing mini interview feature with selected NARA archivists. What questions should we ask them?
NARA is a big organization with knowledgeable and talented employees across many fields of expertise. As a part of their everyday jobs, our staff get to work with interesting and rare documents all the time! If you had the opportunity, what questions would you ask our archivists? Would it be about specific documents they work [...]
Question: We are planning to revamp our topical subject pages. What topics are missing or need more attention?
There’s no question- the National Archives holds a LOT of stuff. That breadth can be a challenge to explain to new researchers and casual website visitors, whose understanding of NARA collections may be as broad as “all the records made in the U.S.” or as dismissive as “boxes and boxes of boring government paperwork.” One [...]
This week’s highlighted question comes from Dan in NARA’s Motion Pictures (NWCS-M) department. The unit has been looking for some time at new models for delivery of NARA’s film, video and audio holdings as it struggles with keeping the aging analog reference collection alive and well. Given limited resources, the problem requires a multi-faceted solution, [...]
Yesterday we asked a question on the blog about transcribing NARA’s handwritten records. Thanks to those of you who commented for the ideas and examples! We love the idea of crowdsourcing and have been thinking about how we could make it work for NARA. Projects like the one that Craig mentioned at the Australian National [...]
Posted by Kristen (admin) on November 5, 2009, under Digitization, Miscellaneous, Online Research, Questions, Social Media (Web 2.0).
Question: What tools and processes do you suggest we use to transcribe NARA’s billions of pages of handwritten documents quickly and efficiently?
Transcribing billions of pages of handwritten documents is no easy task. Between the effects of time on paper and ink, the vagaries of individual handwriting, and history’s less-than-consistent spelling conventions, making sure historic records are intelligible (much less full-text searchable!) is easier said than done. What tools and processes do you suggest we use to [...]
Question: Have you (or one of your students) used National Archives’ records in a National History Day project?
Students and Teachers: Have you (or one of your students) used National Archives’ records in a National History Day (NHD) project? What were the records, and how did they shape what you thought about your topic? In order to help students and teachers find historical materials relevant to their research, we post a list of [...]
What are your favorite sources for looking up biographies? Do you have a favorite site online, or do you swear by a particular print source? We’re in the very early stages of planning a wiki for the National Archives and have recently been considering including a biography section on the site. Our tentative plan is [...]
Posted by Kristen (admin) on September 22, 2009, under Education, Genealogy / Family History, Online Research, Questions, Research, Social Media (Web 2.0).
Subscribe to Email Updates
You can also subscribe to the RSS feed.