October 2014

A Thank-You to the SMPTE and Colleagues

The official company press release on the Archival Technology Medal award is out but I wanted to add an individual thank you to the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) and my colleagues.

First of all, a big thank-you to the SMPTE for the great personal honour and for all the work it is doing through the SMPTE Archival Technology Medal Award to raise awareness of digital preservation challenges and solutions. Film and television reach into every sector of society and around the globe and the SMPTE’s leadership is important not just to the film and television industries but beyond.

Secondly, digital preservation is highly collaborative. I feel I have done my best work over my career in partnership with others. I am fortunate to have co-workers, colleagues, and collaborators who are often world- leading in their fields and to whom I owe a great deal professionally. From television, sound and software engineers to librarians, archivists and economists they have been a pleasure to work and collaborate with.

The citation for the 2014 Archival Technology Medal specifically mentions the Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) and the Jisc digital preservation programme and my early involvement in their establishment. The ongoing success of the DPC, Jisc and its services over the last decade in digital preservation is due to the leadership and staff of these bodies and they have had continuing international impact in their work.

Finally my thanks to SMPTE members and other colleagues for their messages of congratulation and kind words on the announcement.

2014 Archival Technology Medal Awarded to Neil Beagrie


Press Release Date 30/10/2014

Award of the 2014 SMPTE Archival Technology Medal to Neil Beagrie

At a ceremony in Hollywood on 23 October 2014, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®) awarded the 2014 Archival Technology Medal to Neil Beagrie in recognition of his long-term contributions to the research and implementation of strategies and solutions for digital preservation.

The full citation for the award reads “Mr. Beagrie played a key role in the development of a collaborative approach to the study and dissemination of knowledge relating to Digital Preservation, Research Data Management, Digital Curation and Data Archives.  He was responsible for establishing the Digital Preservation Coalition, with major members from industry, national libraries, broadcasters and archives. In addition, he was responsible for establishing the digital preservation program within Jisc.  This program helped to create the Digital Curation Centre, which seeks to actively manage, preserve, and curate digital data throughout the research lifecycle.”

William Kilbride, Executive Director of the Digital Preservation Coalition said: “‘I am delighted to hear that Neil’s work is being recognised with this well-deserved accolade.  He is highly regarded among colleagues in the UK and internationally for his calm, approachable manner, his clear advice, and the high standards he sets.  These virtues are woven into the fabric of the Digital Preservation Coalition, an organisation which he helped create.  I extend congratulations on behalf of all of the DPC’s members and staff, and we are honoured that DPC should be associated with this award.”

Rachel Bruce, Deputy Chief Innovation Officer, from Jisc added: “This award is recognition not only of Neil’s enormous contribution to digital preservation over the years but also the work he has done to clarify and explain aspects of managing research data. This has focused particularly on economic perspectives with the ‘Keeping Research Data Safe’ phases of work and more recently with an influential series of reports on the value of data centres. We are delighted that SMPTE has honoured Neil in this way, it is very much deserved, and we are pleased that some of the initiatives that Jisc has established, such as the digital preservation coalition and our research data programmes and services, are acknowledged as globally valuable.”

The SMPTE is the worldwide leader in motion-imaging standards and education for the communications, media, entertainment, and technology industries.

The SMPTE Archival Technology medal recognizes significant technical advancements or contributions related to the invention or development of technology, techniques, workflows, or infrastructure for the long-term storage, archive, or preservation of media content essence.

Pervasive, fluid and fragile: digital data is a defining feature of our age. The creative industries, Government, research and education, health, the heritage sector, and private life depend on digital materials to satisfy ubiquitous information needs. Digital preservation is an issue which all organisations and individuals will need to address. The 2014 award can also be viewed as a reflection of:

  • the growing importance of digital preservation to major industries such as film and television as their content is dominated by digital; and
  • the profile that digital preservation and research data management in the UK has achieved internationally in the last decade and the impact of the UK Digital Preservation Coalition and Jisc innovation programmes.

Others recognised by the SMPTE at the 2014 Honors & Awards Ceremony included George Lucas and John Logie Baird.

Further information

Neil Beagrie is Director of Consulting at Charles Beagrie Limited (www.beagrie.com), an independent consultancy company based in Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK, specialising in the digital archive, library, science and research sectors.

Charles Beagrie Limited email: info@beagrie.com ; telephone +44 (0)1722 338482

William Kilbride, Digital Preservation Coalition (www.dpconline.org) email: William@dpconline.org ; telephone +44 (0)7967128632

A low, medium, and high resolution version of the photograph of the award at the SMPTE 2014 Honors and Awards Dinner and Ceremony is available for editorial use only at https://www.flickr.com/photos/smpte/15650350081/in/set-72157648600445387 . The Editorial Use Only license means that the images cannot be used for commercial advertising purposes. An Editorial Use Only image can be used: in a newspaper or magazine article; on a blog or website for descriptive purposes; or in a non-commercial presentation.

SMPTE 2014 Honours and Awards Press Release – https://www.smpte.org/2014honors_awards

1st book sprint for Digital Preservation Handbook next week

I’m starting to really look forward to the book sprint for the Digital Preservation Handbook next week.

Final preparations are now in place and we are ready to go. 11 people are contributing over a two-day sprint that will focus on developing new content in key areas such as “Technical Solutions and Tools” and “Getting Started”. The aim is to address some of the new areas identified in the recent audience survey and new content outline.

This will be the first “book sprint” I have been involved in as a facilitator (or participant) so that anticipation is mixed with a bit of nervousness. However there is a great bunch of people involved so we should be productive. Expect a blog post late next week reporting on how it went.

Salisbury one of top ten cities in the world to visit in 2015

Civic pride this morning as Lonely Planet voted Salisbury one of the top ten cities in the world to visit in 2015.

It is a good place for Charles Beagrie Ltd to be based too!