All National Television System Committee (NTSC) unless otherwise noted
We transfer audio and video content at preservation level standards, using widely adopted, well-documented, uncompressed file formats.
Our film scanning is done at a high-end access level, to drive access by curators and researchers and enable decisions to be made for future photochemical preservation.
In our digitization work, technical metadata is maintained on each piece of equipment in the signal path, as well as devices used to monitor the transfer. As the digitization work is performed and monitored in real-time, we review the content and frequently take notes, which we pass along to the Archival Collections Management unit to support description. Different technical metadata points are maintained for different formats and described below:
At present, we maintain “Environment of Creation” (EOC) documentation for all video files in the form of a spreadsheet specifying each piece of hardware and software used in the process. This was a homegrown solution that our unit developed to keep this critical information in a form standardized across all of our digitization work, but we are in conversation with other institutions on a more standard way of documenting “process history” metadata.
BWF standards—Technical metadata describing the environment of creation including all analog and digital machines used in the preservation process is recorded in the BEXT Coding History following EBU Technical Recommendation R98-1999.
We retain the XML-formatted scanner project files (file extension .cdir), which do not conform to a known standardized schema, but do retain all image decisions and adjustments made in the course of a scan, and allow us to revisit a film using the same settings later.