Regional Archives

During the last few years, the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics has installed a number of archiving servers in various places in the world making use of its ”LAT” (Language Archiving Technology) archiving framework. The idea behind a number of these server installations was to set up “regional” archives, which are placed close to the location where the archived resources were originally collected.

Having such a regional archive has a number of advantages. First of all, the fact that the data is stored nearby and not somewhere far away in western Europe often makes the speech community and the local linguists more involved and more interested in the archive. Also technologically it is often an advantage to have the server closer by since it improves the speed at which it can be accessed over the internet. Last but not least, the regional archives can become part of a global grid of language archives in which data is dynamically distributed to improve long-term preservation chances.

The exact procedure of setting up such a regional archive depends on the local circumstances, but always involves the installation of the LAT suite (either remotely or locally), connecting the server to the local infrastructure, and training the local staff in how to maintain the LAT server and support the users of it. This whole process takes about 5 days. Optionally, a training course for users of the archive can be offered as well.

At the moment, there are LAT servers running in the following locations:

Installations in Cape Town (South Africa), Cologne (Germany), Buea (Cameroon), Tbilissi (Georgia) and Kathmandu (Nepal) are planned for the future.