Digital Component

The Brooklyn Museum has its own digital lab, physically separate from but also a department of the the Libraries and Archives. In this way, my work as a cataloger is very separate from the digital world of the Brooklyn Museum Libraries where they are digitizing and assigning metadata to images that will go onto the museum's website. However, I can't help but notice, as I go through the vertical files, things that I see that strike me as perfect candidates for digitization. Sometimes these things are just visually appealing and sometimes they contain unique information, about an obscure Brooklyn Gallery that hasn't been open for 30 years or so for instance. Either way, I try to make a note that this either needs further processing, or I will add it to the Special Collections Database, with the hope that future cataloger's will take note of these things. Though it is unclear at this time whether vertical file material will ever be digitized, I have to be optimistic that some day, they will.
It could also be argued that I am very involved in the digital network of libraries in that the cataloging I am doing is going directly into Worldcat, and every step in this process is done through advanced software, technology and couldn't be possible without the internet. The importance of this work becomes apparent when you think about how people access information. If the materials are not discoverable online, its virtually as if they don't exist. In such, it is almost as if the information itself is created with every export of the bib record.
Page from Ida Jackson dress diary
Courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum