Hello everyone! With PRONOM research week coming up I thought my contribution could be to refurbish the signature development utility. And that is what this blog is about. If you visit http://ffdev.info today you’ll be able to get started with the refreshed utility and there’s a little more information in the video below.
A new feature of the utility is the addition of the ability to create container signatures which I talk a little more about those in a previous OPF blog.
It has always been quite a manual process to create container signatures and so it is something I had wanted to tackle for a while. It was only recently that I was getting up to speed with a few different technologies and there was an intersection with my other work on Siegfried and Wikidata, that it made sense to give it a go.
Forward facing architecture
I have refreshed the code-base converting it all to Golang and adding an updated web-development framework to smarten things up a little.
The app uses new structures for receiving and converting signature information into something useful. This will be beneficial for creating new and different serializations from the same platform moving forward.
How can you contribute?
Give it a whirl!
For PRONOM research week, in the course of any signature development work you may be doing, if you are able to spot bugs in the generation of signatures, or if you can identify user-experience requirements, that would be great! The more feedback the utility can generate toward improving it, the better the experience of working on PRONOM can be made for others.
I have a small list of changes that I am looking forward to come back to work on. The road-map items can be found in the GitHub issues repository for the utility. The Issues repository is the best place to leave feature enhancements and bug reports as well.
Have fun! Be creative!
Containers are fun! There are undoubtedly other OLE2 formats out there that need identifying. And there are a lot of things that can be stored in ZIP files using a lot of different configurations. Container signatures might provide the key to identifying software versions; something Euan has been looking at. They might hold the key for more granular identification of other objects? Library of Congress Bags created by different utilities and providers for example. And they might provide the key to other compound identifications – broader categories of collection or format needed to make tools like the preservation action registry (PAR) sing.
I am looking forward to hearing how it goes.