Association of Moving Image Archivists & Digital Library Federation Hack Day 2014

From CURATEcamp
Revision as of 21:11, 10 October 2014 by Mark Bussey (talk | contribs) (New and Improved PBCore Tools)
Jump to: navigation, search


>>> When, Where, What time?

  • Date: Wednesday, October 8, 2014
  • Time: ~9am-5pm (with option of continued work projects throughout the conference in our Developer Lounge TBA location)
  • Location: Hyatt Regency Savannah, Scarborough 3 Room
  • hashtag: #AVhack14
  • IRC: #curatecamp_avpres_1 If using an IRC client the server is, or you can use your browser and connect to If you are unfamiliar with IRC, take a look at this ☞ brief introduction.

How can I participate?

Sign up! As this will be a highly participatory event, registration is limited to those willing to get their hands dirty, so no onlookers please.

If you are unsure whether you can or want to participate in the hack day itself, you can still see the results by attending the AMIA closing plenary, where hack day projects will be presented, and the audience will have an opportunity to vote on their favorites.

What will be the format of the event?

In advance of the hack day, project ideas and edit-a-thon topics will be collected through the registration form and the event wiki. In advance of the event, participants will review and discuss submitted project ideas. We’ll then break into groups consisting of technologists and practitioners, and Wikipedia editors, selecting an idea or topic(s) to work on together for the day and (if desired) throughout the duration of the AMIA conference in the developers lounge.

The day itself will be structured something like this. Coffee/tea will be provided. Lunch is on your own.

9am – Welcome, introductions

9:30 - noon - Hacking & Wikipedia editing. Snacks and coffee to be served.

Noon-1pm – Lunch on your own.

1 - 4:30 - Hacking & Wikipedia editing. Snacks and coffee will be served.

4:30 - 5 - Wrap up.

Closing plenary & prizes

Projects will be presented towards the end of the conference. Projects will be judged by a panel as well as by conference attendees.


In association with the annual conference, the Association of Moving Image Archivists will host its 2nd annual hack day on October 8, 2014 in Savannah, GA. The event will be a unique opportunity for practitioners and managers of digital audiovisual collections to join with developers and engineers for an intense day of collaboration to develop solutions for digital audiovisual preservation and access. This year, we will be holding a concurrent Wikipedia Edit-a-thon[1] for those interested in adding to knowledge pool about audiovisual preservation and access. It will be fun and practical.

AMIA is again partnering with the Digital Library Federation in organizing the hack day. A robust and diverse community of practitioners who advance research, teaching and learning through the application of digital library research, technology and services, DLF brings years of experience creating and hosting events designed to foster collaboration and develop shared solutions for common challenges.

What if I’m not a developer?

Content managers and preservation practitioners are as central to the success of the event as having keen developers. YOU will be responsible for setting the agenda and the outcomes. The goal is to foster collaboration between audiovisual preservation specialists and technologists, to solve problems together and share expertise.

The day will also include a Wikipedia Edit-a-thon. So even if you're not a developer, nor feel compelled to lend your digital preservation ideas to software and code development, you can contribute to creating new or updated content on Wikipedia for the benefit of our community! You can read all about Wikipedia edit-a-thon events here.


What is a hack day?

A hack day or hackathon is an event that brings together computer technologists and practitioners for an intense period of problem solving through computer programming. Within digital preservation and curation communities, hack days provide an opportunity for archivists, collection managers, and others to work together with technologists to develop software solutions for digital collections management needs. Hack days have been held independently by groups such as the Open Planets Foundation, as well as in association with preservation and access oriented conferences including Open Repositories and Museums and the Web.

The manifesto of a recent event at the Open Repositories conference framed the benefits this way: “Transparent, fun, open collaboration in diversely constituted teams...The creation of new professional networks over the ossification of old ones. Effective engagement of non-developers (researchers, repository managers) in development...Work done at the conference over presentation of something prepared earlier.”

Our Manifesto


  • Transparent, fun, open collaboration in diversely constituted teams over individual brilliance and/or groups of like individuals in cut-throat competition.
  • The creation of new professional networks over the ossification of old ones
  • Effective engagement of non-developers (researchers, repository managers) in development over purely developer driven projects.
  • Work done at the conference over presentation of something prepared earlier (meaning not working on a project you a working on during your day job)

Hack Day Project proposals

Below are loose ideas for projects to hack on! If you're interested in one of the project stubs below, sign up for a wiki login and add your thoughtful comments or possible starting points to the proposal, or contact the proposer via twitter or email. As the Hack Day approaches, we'll brainstorm further and consolidate like-minded projects.

Hack day capture: GUI tool for BMDCapture, using FFmpeg + BMDTools + BlackMagic Decklink SDK

  •  Proposed by Dave Rice, @dericed
    • Lauren Sorensen - @laurensx
    • Dave Rice - @dericed
    • Tommy from Video Film Solutions
    • Shai Drori, Independent

Adding a GUI with XCode and adding some features to vrecord, an open source tool that can be used with Blackmagic hardware. Making it so it is controlled by the GUI (Mac), outputting to MOV container with various options for codec: uncompressed, FFV1, motion JPEG-2000, Prores.

New and Improved PBCore Tools

This team is creating two PBCore 2.0 tools which can easily be updated when the next PBCore schema version is released. The tools include an updated PBCore XML record validator and PBCore XML record generator.

PBCore Validator

Updated and replaced application components to create an improved version based on the PBCore 2.0 XML. We are also including a Dublin Core validator through the same web application. Github Repo:

PBCore Record Generator

We built a basic Rails webform and extracted the PBCore export code from the WGBH project HydraDAM developed by WGBH and DCE so that we have a lightweight web application to enter metadata based on the PBCore data model and export in well-formed PBCore 2.0 XML. We are also planning to provide a Dublin Core export via this form.

Team Members

  • Proposed by Casey E. Davis, WGBH
  • Mark Bussey, DCE
  • Tessa Fallon, Collective Access
  • Crystal Sanchez, Smithsonian Institution
  • keithg, Virginia Tech

Video Characterization Comparison Viewer

The tool runs multiple command line video characterization applications (ffprobe, mediainfo, exiftool) on a given AV file/set of files and outputs the results in a format that is easy for comparative analysis. The aim of the tool is to identify differences in the outputs of these common applications, with the goal of better understanding the tools, and possibly submitting reports to their developers and eventually improving them.

Use cases for the tool

  • Compare different tool outputs in order to determine what tool to use in your characterization workflows
  • Reporting on differences in order to understand how the tool calculates the outputs
  • Identifying bugs in order to report to the tool developers

This project build on a similar project that was developed during the Open Repositories 2014 Developer Challenge (although the #AVHack14 version is bigger and better). Read more about that here.


Team Members

  • Kara Van Malssen
  • Ben Fino-Radin
  • Morgan Morel
  • Joey Heinen
  • Nicole Martin
  • Karen Cariani
  • Eugene Gekhter

Video Sprites!

Video thumbnail summaries as metadata. Created a command line program (wrapped as a Ruby gem) that exports thumbnail images, a thumbnail sprite image, and WebVTT metadata. A user can run a bash command and specify an input video or folder of video and Video Sprites will utilize ffmpeg and ImageMagick to export these files.

Each command can be specified with the following flags.

  • -f for frames. Optional. Time between the snapshots. (Default 5 seconds.)
  • -w for width. Optional. Width of the each thumbnail. (Default 200.)
  • -c for columns. Number of columns in the sprite. (Default 5.)
  • -k for keep. Keep all the individual images and other intermediate artifacts.
  • -i for input. This is the only required field. (Default: Current working directory.)
  • -o for output. Output directory. (Default: Current working directory with "output" directory.)
  • -v for verbose. Detailed comments when processing.
  • -z for clean. Optional. Clear the output directory for files named like the input file before execution. (Defaults to false)
  • -h for help. Explains each flag.


Team Members

  • (Proposed by) Jason Ronallo
  • Ashley Blewer
  • Nicholas Zoss
  • Jay Brown

ArchivesSpace plugins – AV_Space

A growing number of archival repositories are adopting ArchivesSpace for managing archival description. But out of the box, ASpace lacks support for AV specific data. We aim to do something about that.

  • Team: brianjhoffman [at] gmail [dawt] com (instigator and developer) ; jackb [at] illinois [dawt] edu ; seth [at] avpreserve [dawt] com ; ben.moskowitz [at] nyu [dawt] edu ; hfrost [at] stanford [dawt] edu ; villereal [at] gmail [dawt] com

Wikipedia Edit-a-thon topic proposals

IRC: #curatecamp_avpres_2 If using an IRC client the server is, or you can use your browser and connect to If you are unfamiliar with IRC, take a look at this brief introduction.

Day-of tracking/worksheet here! Notes and tips doc

We’ll be hosting a concurrent Wikipedia edit-a-thon, which will focus on topics related to digital preservation & access for audiovisual materials. While we encourage non-engineers to participate in the hack day portion, there’s a lot of work to be done to describe topics relevant to our community on Wikipedia as well. (via AMIA Announcement) Below are loose ideas for Wiki projects or topics to edit! If you're interested in one of the project stubs below, sign up for a wiki login and add your thoughtful comments, or contact the proposer via twitter or email.

Haven't edited a Wiki before? No problem! We will have a brief crash course early in the day, with help available anytime! It's easy to learn, we promise.

Have a new idea? Use this format:

  • Topic: [link to existing Wikipedia page goes here, or new topic]
  • Interested?
  • Sign up to edit this topic (OK to sign up for multiple topics):

AV Artifact Atlas

Team Members

  • Kristin MacDonough
  • Travis Wagner
  • Marleigh Chiles
  • Josephine McRobbie

Objective: Obtain and implement user feedback to improve the user experience

  • Proposal: The AVAA is intended for all levels of a/v knowledge, from experts and non-experts. While the resource provides a lot of useful information from experts, it benefits from more feedback and edits from general users. @super_kmac


  • Review and discuss navigation and usability
  • Edit visual elements, interconnectivity, and links to external information and resources

Digital Preservation

Team Members:

Objective: Update and improve Digital Preservation Wikipedia entry

  • Proposal: Check out the great efforts to maintain and expand the Digital Preservation wiki page! "The scope of this project is to reorganize and revise the content of the current Digital Preservation article so that it reflects the current state of the field and is better suited to ongoing updating and editing. We will also review related articles to determine their content and relationship to the main article. A further goal of this effort is to include links to relevant standards and best practices in the field of digital preservation." Thanks to Lauren Sorenson and Andrea Goethals for suggesting. -- kgronsbell @k_grons


FFmpeg Guides

Team Members

    • Rebecca Fraimow**
    • Erica Titkemeyer**

Objective: Make ffmpeg easier to understand and use

  • Final doc from last year here
  • Link to last year's project page with helpful links here
  • This is like a proof of concept but I'd really like to make it AWESOME! It also needs to be totally refactored into a non-Rails app - Ashley here