New from FISH
You are invited to take part in a peer review of MIDAS Heritage: the UK Historic Environment Information Standard. This is the new edition of a professional standard for recording historic environment information. The first edition, published in 1998, is the agreed data standard for inventories of monuments and investigations of the built and buried heritage in England. Full details can be found on the Invitation to Take Part in the MIDAS Heritage Peer Review page.
We have a new Convenor Isabel Holroyd, Chief Bibliographer at biab online - the British & Irish Archaeological Bibliography - who, along with the new Co-ordinator Emma Turner from the Data Standards Unit at English Heritage, has taken over from Jason Siddall, former Sites and Monuments Record officer at the National Trust. Jason handed over the reigns at the Spring meeting of the Forum's attending membership. All members would like to thank Jason for his work for the Forum over the last two years, and Isabel and Emma for taking on the roles of Convenor and Co-ordinator. Isabel and Emma's contact details can be found on Contributing Organisations.
The FISH Interoperability Toolkit was launched on the 24th March at the IFA Conference in Winchester. The launch formed part of a conference session that reviewed the current state of data standards in the heritage sector, identified problems in drawing together data from disparate sources, and looked at both the Toolkit and other data modelling projects that seek to address these.
The launch marks the successful conclusion to the development of the Toolkit in its first version. The project was funded by approx £30,000 from English Heritage with contributions from the National Trust, and staff time from the Royal Commissions in Wales and Scotland, Archaeology Data Service, MDA, Staffordshire and Worcestershire County Councils. To mark the launch a special 'FISH cake' was shared with the conference session participants.
The Toolkit in its current form provides an infrastructure and some initial tools to support the sharing of records between heritage organisations. At its heart is the MIDAS XML schema set that provides a neutral format for data communication. This has been compared by its designer, Tyler Bell of Oxford ArchDigital to a general purpose handle to which other tools can be attached as they are developed. Further details are available online via the FISH website
This month sees the start of collaborative work between the members of FISH, the Forum on Information Standards in Heritage and software developer Oxford ArchDigital. The work, funded by a patchwork of contributors including English Heritage and the National Trust will be managed by the NMR Data Standards Unit of English Heritage. It will provide a 'toolkit' of formats and protocols to improve the flow of information between heritage datasets held by organisations from across the UK heritage sector.
At the core of the new toolkit will be an eXtensible Markup Language (XML) format, based on the MIDAS and INSCRIPTION standards, and drawing upon the CIDOC Conceptual Reference Model (CRM) - an emerging international standard for the cultural heritage sector. The project will demonstrate, using real examples, how data can be exported into this new format, and imported into a variety of databases to build a network of historic environment information resources.
See the project information sheet for further details.
A final reprint of the first edition of the MIDAS standard has been launched on the English Heritage website. The reprint includes additional example inventories and defines four new units of information. It is available as a downloadable PDF file. See the MIDAS updates page for further information.
On 16th of October the steering group for the Forum on Information Standards in Heritage met at the National Trust Office in York. Among the subjects discussed was a response to the consultation paper on Historic Environment Records. The steering committee unanimously welcomed a chance to respond on behalf of FISH. The response to the consultation paper can be found at the following link. Response.
We have a new Convenor Jason Siddall, Sites and Monuments Record officer at the National Trust, has today taken on the role of Forum Convenor. Nigel Pratt, of Hampshire County Council handed over the reigns at the Spring meeting of the Forums attending membership. All members thank Nigel for his work for the forum over the last two years, and Jason for taking on the role of Convenor. Jason's contact details can be found on Contributing Organisations.
Terms of Reference INSCRIPTION Contributing Organisations New from FISH
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