David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, has announced in his personal blog the opening of an Innovation Hub on the first floor of the National Archives building in Washington, D.C. The new Innovation Hub has two sections: a meeting area, and a citizen scanning room where researchers can scan the National Archives’ records with state-of-the-art equipment at no cost as long as they also contribute a copy of their digital scans for inclusion in the National Archives’ online catalog.
The result is a win-win: the visitor to the National Archives receives free use of state-of-the-art digitizing equipment to keep for his or her own use while the National Archives gets pieces of its holdings digitized at no additional expense beyond creating and stocking the Innovation Hub. (Paying someone to digitize documents normally is quite expensive.)
Ferriero writes, “The Hub is already buzzing with activity. Our first week, we hosted the Primarily Teaching group of educators, who scanned almost 100 pages of records on Chinese immigration to be included in our online Docs Teach system and our Catalog. We have planned transcription parties as well as hosting Wikipedian meetings as well.”
You can read more in David S. Ferriero’s blog at http://aotus.blogs.archives.gov/2015/07/20/the-innovation-hub-2/.