[Nethistory] Collecting the history of networking, a possible methodology

Elizabeth Feinler <feinler@earthlink.net> Wed, 22 May 2013 21:17 UTC

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Subject: [Nethistory] Collecting the history of networking, a possible methodology
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Dear All,

At the IETF BoF in Orlando we learned that Kilam Chon and his colleagues have made a good start on a  structure for collecting the history of networking.

	See: https://sites.google.com/site/internethistoryasia/country-region-information 
I would like to suggest that we build on that structure in the following way:

1.)  Use Chon’s list of countries to build a tree-structured framework of networking
      history contacts and activities unique to each country

2.)  Find a volunteer for each country to act as that country’s Network History Liaison

The Network History Liaison would:

1.)  Act as a “go to” point of contact for anyone who has a computer or network history
      donation but does not know where or how to begin to find a suitable facility for the

2.)  Develop a list of repositories (if any) and significant archival collections (if any) located 
      within his or her country along with relevant contact information..  Provide liaison 
      to significant repositories that may or may not reside in his or her country;

3.)  Collaborate via the nethistory@ietf.org mailing list to develop an online worldwide network 
      history information framework.

4.)  Help develop posting and trading practices for duplicate donations, and like activities 
       to be determined as the need arises.

5.)  Help facilitate the deposition of important networking history artifacts and archives at
      established repositories that will protect and preserve them in perpetuity.  

6.)  Promote the importance of saving the history of networking for posterity.

The Network History Liaison would:

1.)  NOT accept donations as part of his or her role; but would only act as an information
     liaison to facilities that do accept donations.

2.) NOT act as an appraiser for any donation or  proposed donation, or at
     any time assess a monetary value to any item or collection.

Each NHL can pull together a team of volunteers or choose to work alone to help develop the structure and/or provide liaison for his or her country.

- It is assumed that what is being collected and what aspect of  network history originated 
  in any given country would be different from other countries; however, 
  there would be common information elements such as:
	- Name of collection institution
	- Scope of collection
	- Online or offline or both
	- Where institution is located
	- Contact person
	- Is the collector a legitimate repository with endowment
  The number and nature of these common elements to be developed by the group.

- It is also assumed that any donor has the right to offer his or her donation to any 
  collector and that any collector has the right to accept or refuse any donation 

Please note that this is a :”strawman” approach that builds upon work already begun, the details of which will be further developed to suit the need.