Digital Archives

Digital Archives can sometimes be a huge blessing or can seem like a dead end. I will go ahead and say that I love digital archives and they should always be used as a valuable tool. I am not blind however to the “dangers” that come with them. I once had a professor who said in this day and age we are blessed with online access, but nothing can beat going into an archive. When I first heard him/her say that I thought it was a nonsense. I had done so much research online from material that was being preserved over in Europe how could this be bad? Well in reality we also have to consider that not everywhere in hooked up to the internet. They’re hundreds upon thousands of collections that are not digitized or in the process of being digitized. Not only that, but not everyone has access to the internet which can be a huge hamper on researching material. I feel like the Agudas Israel Synagogue website is a bit different from other digital archives I have seen. the goal of my group’s project is to show the world the foundation of the Synagogue in a way that is easy to interpret. I feel like the goal of a digital archive is to show to world the “hard evidence” of any collection. Nothing is wrong with either of these goals as it all depends on what audience you are trying to appeal to. The larger the audience you are reaching out to the harder the challenge is in formatting your website. If I were to put a digital archive for my project I would love to put in the founding documents of the constitution and the minutes that were taken of the meetings. The election results for the Synagogue are very interesting to observe and would be useful in a digital archive.

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