Collaboration and Connections: Postprints of the AICCM Paper, Books and Photographic Materials Special Interest Group Symposium, Sydney 1-3 April 2004, pp. 7-16


This illustrated talk examines the challenges encountered in an ongoing collaborative project to document and electronically publish a selection of Wellington book trade business histories, print products, and oral interviews from 1840 to the present. Using new media technologies of image scans, digital audio, TEI-XML mark-up text, and full on-line search capabilities, this project brings the material world of print and its practitioners to a global audience, whether academic, professional, or the general public. Issues of digital surrogacy, the new digital canon, and the possibilities of a new kind of publication forum will be addressed. The Print History Project is a collaboration between the New Zealand Electronic Text Centre, the JC Beaglehole Room of the Victoria University of Wellington’s University Library, and the Wai-te-ata Press. Its website is:

What happens to the material object when it goes digital? Who is its audience? How are we shaping their experience? Can we walk the tightrope of access versus preservation? What is the status of the artefact in the digital domain? Are we creating a new digital canon? How are diverse communities of interest impacted, whether historians, curators, archivists, conservators, or heritage specialists? Ultimately, how is computer technology itself shaping the artefact, the research process, and research outcomes?

3rd Book, Paper and Photographs Symposium, 2004
Paper author:
Shep, Dr Sydney J