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DSpace Newsletter - Spring, 2001

New Staff

Robert Tansley joined the DSpace Project Team in December as a Developer, and is currently located at HP Labs in Bristol,England. Robert completed a PhD in the application of semiology to multimedia information at the University of Southampton in 2000. During his time at Southampton, he also designed and implemented the Eprints open source preprint and reprint archive software, currently in use at Southampton as a cognitive sciences repository (CogPrints), and by the University of California eScholarship programme, amongst others. He was also involved in the specification and alpha-testing of the Open Archives Initiative metadata harvesting protocol. During his spare time, Robert enjoys music, film and travel.

User Needs Assessment End Users

  • MIT Faculty & Researchers - An online survey to determine content contributor preferences for submission features is underway at http://www.zoomerang.com/survey.zgi?95RGYSL5N2JSYG6H0DCV8SBV . All MIT faculty and researchers are encouraged to fill out this short survey. (Both of these surveys can be reached through links on our website, http://web.mit.edu/dspace )

  • Subspace Administrators - All departments, labs and centers that have expressed an interest in becoming a subspace of DSpace are being interviewed by Margret Branschofsky to discuss their needs and preferences. Please contact her if you would like to participate - margretb@mit.edu, 253-1293. (You don't have to be an early adopter to do this.)

Technical Accomplishments

  • "Little D", the proof-of-concept pilot system that tests basic design and tools, is a resounding success thanks to the efforts of developers David Stuve and Peter Breton. Building upon this success, DSpace is now releasing updates to the software on a 3-week development cycle schedule.

  • In December DSpace hosted an Architecture Review to get feedback on the proposed design and architecture of DSpace. Experts and interested parties from Hewlett-Packard Co., MIT, Harvard University and Tufts University attended. http://www.dspace.org is now active.

  • Version control software, CVS, has been installed on our server. All hardware has been received and installed in MIT's Data Center, Building W91, and the prototype implementations are running on it.

  • DSpace is now registered on SourceForge, the open source developers' site. User Interface A worldwide team, including designers Linda Godwin and Susan Greenspan in Oregon and developer Robert Tansley in England, is collaborating with members of the team in Massachusetts to design the user interface for DSpace. Usability tests of these pages will be held in April on the MIT campus. Anyone interested in participating as a tester, please contact Margret Branschofsky at margretb@mit.edu or 253-1293.


The DSpace Advisory Board has been formed and held its first meeting in December.

Members include: Anne Beamish, Erik Brynjolfsson, James Buzard, Eric Celeste, Catherine Friedman, Jerome Friedman, John Lienhard, Gareth McKinley, William Mitchell, Jerry Saltzer, Richard Schmalensee, Robert Stalnaker, Bruce Tidor, Ann Wolpert.

Public Relations

  • Mick Bass, Project Leader, gave a presentation about DSpace to the MIT Technology & Policy Program in December. He repeated this presentation for MIT Libraries staff in January.

  • Margret Branschofsky gave a presentation about DSpace to MIT students and staff during MIT's Independent Activities Period in January. She repeated this presentation later in the month for the New England Chapter of the American College & Research Libraries group, and again for the Boston Women's Information Networking group.

  • Eric Celeste gave a presentation about DSpace to an MIT Industrial Liaison Program group in India this January. He repeated the presentation for MIT staff later in the month. The Fall/Winter edition of "MIT Libraries News" featured an article entitled "DSpace: Sharing MIT's Intellectual Output".

  • DSpace will be on the program at the following conferences this Spring and Summer:
    • Coalition for Networked Information Meeting
    • American Society for Engineering Education Annual Meeting
    • Joint Conference on Digital Libraries (ACM & IEEE)



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