The first meeting of ABA was a roaring success, and for the benefit of those who could not join us (and for those who would like to relive the experience), we are adding summaries to the blog. See the other summaries here.


The American Philosophical Society is migrating from CONTENTdm to Islandora, and Rich outlined a number of reasons why they made the choice.

Unlike CDM, Islandora is a free, open-source digital repository.

Rich talked about implementation of Islandora and how the American Philosophical Society has been using Islandora to build a Digital Repository. The process has been about more than just replacing ContentDM. Rich explained the main issues with ContentDM (e.g. it’s extremely expensive, was not intended for all types of digital materials) and the advantages to moving to Islandora (e.g. it’s free, it was built to handle all types of digital materials, everything is through a browser therefore it is not restrained by an operating system).

Islandora has an excellent user community and responsive developers. It has the front end of Drupal, but the management chops of Fedora. It is helpful to know Linux administrative basics and to have knowledge of Drupal administration – your knowledge will grow the more you do it and then what you can do becomes more sophisticated as you learn how to use it. Also know your metadata, specifically MODS and Dublin Core.

Rich said he spent four months learning about the program and that you could do it too if you have a willingness to read error logs and a DIY attitude. The migration of all the audio at APS took a month (4,700 files – over 1 TB). About one third of the images have been migrated, it is taking longer to do the images due to fixing errors that have been discovered during the process and adding new objects in.