Presented by: ABDUL WAHEED Chief Librarian GCU, Lahore ABID IQBAL ABID Librarian GCU Lahore [email_address] [email_address] BUILDING DIGITAL LIBRARY OF “THE RAVI” WITH GREENSTONE AT GC UNIVERSITY LAHORE
An automated library is not a digital library because of the material in printed form. In digital libraries, the services are fully automated where all resources are in Digital form.
There are two possibilities – the library that contains material in digital form and the library that contains digital material.
The difference is very subtle but the important point is that a digital library has material stored in a computer system in a form that allows it to be manipulated and delivered, which is otherwise in conventional form not possible.
Electronic library and digital library mean one and the same thing. British call it electronic and the American call it a digital library.
POSSIBLE ROLE OF DIGITAL LIBRARIES IN HUMAN DEVELOPMENT
Dissemination of humanitarian information is a realm
Preservation and propagation of indigenous culture,
The idea of digital library is new in Pakistan. No research study was conducted to find out the status of digital libraries in Pakistan.
Only a few articles and reports are available which have discussed the issue in Pakistani perspective.
The reputed academic institutions are now thinking about developing digital libraries. Some efforts have also been made by LUMS, Iqbal Academy, Quaid-e-Azam Library, Punjab University Library and Shirkat Gah etc to set up or plan their own digital libraries.
Digitization is the conversion of materials or analog media into electronic form for creating digital collection. Analog media includes books, journal articles, micro form, photos, audio, video, etc.
Simply it is high speed data transmission technique. In digitization, work is compressed in digit (0,1) form. 0 and 1 is a symbolic form about polarization of ions in magnetic media, where we store the data.
Digitization is necessitated for both accessibility and preservation. Digital collection is a most important component of the digital library.
Pakistan may be a part of mass digitization like Google Book Search and Digitization of Books.
The GSDL is an internationally Open Source Software (OSS) system for developing digital libraries.
GSDL is distributed on the web and also produced on CD-ROM. The software is being downloaded an average of 1,500 times per month
Greenstone has been used for collections of ranging 20 GB of raw text, 2 billion words, 60 million unique terms.
Many salient features like Platforms, Educational usage, Standards, An extensible plug-in scheme and Languages etc.
Others known OSS are ‘DSpace’, ‘Dienst’, ‘Eprints’, ‘Fedora’, ‘Greenstone’ etc.
Initially, the D-Space was selected for the Project but it was not fulfilling library requirements, so selected GSDL. The main reason of selecting this software was that the two key persons were familiar and had worked in this software.
Digital material can be taken as computer readable material in general. The creation of digital information from conventional material is generally a two stage process.
First stage is digitization – this is essentially the conversion of the physical medium into a digital representation of that physical medium. e.g. scanning a page producing a computer readable (digital) image of the paper within the computer. The computer only recognizes a digital picture of the page.
The second stage is to have the computer extract information from the digitized image. For text, it is done by OCR software to convert the text image into ASCII format for editing and manipulation of information and to store in textual format.
The GCU library is very ‘welcoming place’ in the university. The library came into existence in 1872. At present three main and seven departmental libraries are offering services to faculty, researchers and students of the University.
There were 308438 books in June, 2010.
CSS, the very first center for visually impaired persons (VIP’s) in Pakistan was established in the GCU, which is associated with the Library.
The GCU is the first public sector university library in Pakistan launched its website in 1998. Both GCU and GCUL websites are administrated by the library management from the first day
The Library takes pride in having 43 personal collections.
The Ravi began to be published in June 1906. In the beginning, it was published yearly, and was confined to records only. Later on this function of the Ravi was abandoned and it was raised to the status of a monthly magazine for students.
It has continued to grow and flourish with grace down to the present year. The Ravi has now become a permanent feature of the University, increasing in flow, force and volume.
The Ravi was primarily an English Journal until 1919, when the Urdu section became a regular feature. Two years later a Hindi section was added. Later on Punjabi (in Persian and Gurmukhi script) also became regular aspect.
Presently it is published annually in English, Urdu and Punjabi languages.
HEC has also approved the Ravi as a recognized journal with other nine journals published in Urdu language in other countries.
Since its inception to-date 102 volumes of the Ravi have been published. The first special issues was in 1924 titled as “Special Jubilee No”. The other numbers were
Hammy No (1924), Sondhi No (1936), Old Ravians (1950), Centenary Number (1964), 125 Year No (1989) Iqbal No (1974), Quaid No (1976), Hijra No (1981), Azad No (1983), Pakistan Golden Jubilee No (1997), Ghalib No (1998), Ishfaq Ahmad No (2005)…..
The Ravi has been published in the editorship of many well known editors. Some prominent are
Digitization project was virtually initiated in 2005. The library did not have latest scanners, so the resources were digitize as JPG images without assigning OCR Initially, library started the digitization activities by using internal funds; however, later on HEC has provided one million grant in 2009
It was a combined attempt of professionals’ theoretical knowledge with the practical know-how of computing staff at GCU Library.
We have not a single copy of Ravi which is born digital, so decided to digitize all the collection.
At the first stage we will scan the copies of Ravi published after the 1947, however bibliographic details of remaining Ravi’s will be provided to the users.
National Digitization Policy should be developed for the national, academic and public libraries level and implemented through Federal and Provincial governments by National Library and HEC authorities.
Training of master trainer’s librarians both at national and international levels by involving the bodies like UNESCO, WDL etc.
Collaboration with USA, UK and Indian Embassies at first stage by identifying possible areas of collaboration may be initiated. Later the same may be extended with South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and National Libraries of Asia and Oceania (CDNLAO). However it is essential to establish an association of libraries at university libraries level to start formal collaboration.
Last but not least it is concluded that as we are “first time buyers.” in the context of starting any formal digitization project perhaps in Pakistan but of course first time in the GC University Lahore.
It is common that first time buyers are notorious for making unwise choices – either buying or attempting too much or too little – whereas those who have struggled with their first wave of projects make better and savvier choices the second time around.
After completing the project we are confident to do more and to set up a new example for other institutions of the country and to introduce GCU Libraries at international level following the example of WDL.