Both Kit Good and myself are now equipped with the XENA software and various other tools (DROID, JHOVE, Metadata Extractor Tool) on our desktops. We’ve been making progress with the first round of evaluation of these tools. Kit kindly provided a corpus of test documents we could work on – including documents, spreadsheets, images, emails, and presentations. (Hint: they were of course copies and not original electronic documents).
To evaluate the tools in a methodical way, I drew up these draft evaluation sheets for each digital object type.
For the technical metadata elements, I reused the AHDS minimum PREMIS requirements as a starting point. My thinking was that I’m really only interested in object characteristics, so as yet no Events, Agents, or Rights metadata (all strong PREMIS features) because we’re not actually building a digital repository for this project.
Lastly our table on assessing successful conversions is inspired by Clausen’s fine work on Handling File Formats.
Our hope is that this amounts to a fair set of criteria that conforms to existing literature, and can work for assessing the value of tools, and the converted outputs, which can be easily marked and scored.