DoD

January 24, 2014

DOD to preserve historic images

Tags:
Claudette Roulo
American Forces Press Service 

A view from the top rear of the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) located at the Defense Visual Information Center, March Air Reserve Base, Calif. The DIMOC, which digitizes and stores existing media to preserve visual records from all services, is running out of storage space at the March location, despite its massive size.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Defense Imagery Management Operations Center recently signed a $5 million agreement to digitize, store and provide access to hundreds of thousands of historical images.

The center, referred to as DIMOC, is the Defense Department’s central repository for visual imagery. It exists to preserve visual records first for the DOD, and then for other agencies and members of the public, said Mike Edrington, DIMOC director.

But, in addition to its digital archive, the agency has a massive backlog of images on physical, analog media that ranges from photographic negatives and slides to films and VHS tapes.

“That material is deteriorating faster than we can offer it to the National Archives and we need to get it into a digital form” Edrington said. In addition, DIMOC’s climate-controlled, automated storage facility at March Air Reserve Base, Calif., is running out of space, he said.

The March facility is where analog visual imagery assets are shipped and processed. Those assets weren’t always being stored in ideal conditions before they were sent to DIMOC, Edrington said.

The images are often found in obscure places on bases as they close down or as offices move, he said. “They’ve found it in corners of warehouses, and sometimes we don’t know exactly where the stuff’s found, but it comes delivered to us, it shows up on a pallet … and sometimes the stuff says ‘box of stuff.’”

Regardless of condition, images sent to March are never simply destroyed, Edrington noted, “because they’re federal records.” Everything is assessed, barcoded and stored for later digitization.

“We want the material. If they find it, we want it,” Edrington said, noting that DOD personnel can contact DIMOC customer service if they have images they want to accession. They can be reached by email at askdimoc@dma.mil or by phone at 1-888-PH-DIMOC (743-4662).

The images in DIMOC’s digital holdings are also shared with the National Archives, he said.

“There’s a lot of history,” Edrington said. “It’s not just celebrities such as Elvis Presley … we’ve got that kind of stuff, but more importantly, we’ve got Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines doing what they do.”

Three contract employees operate the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) Pickstations at the Defense Visual Information Center. Motion media and still media from all the military services are stored here. The ASRS is an environmentally controlled, self-contained, state-of-the-art, robotics track guided system. It is four stories high and about half the size of a football field.

A digitization and storage study conducted in 2010 by the Defense Media Activity, DIMOC’s parent organization, found it would take up to 50 years and at least $25 million to digitize the current analog holdings with available government resources, Edrington said.

By taking a different approach, the new contract will shorten that period to five years at a fraction of the cost.

The contract is the first of its kind in the Defense Department, Edrington said. In exchange for digitizing the images, the contractor, T3Media, will be granted a limited period of exclusivity during which they will be able to charge non-DOD users a fair-market fee to use the images.

All DOD personnel will be able to access and download the images for free by accessing a secure website, Edrington said.

In this constrained budget environment, the department can no longer afford to subsidize the access of commercial media and non-government entities to DOD imagery. Changing to a fee-based system will offset the cost of digitizing, storing and providing public access to the imagery.

“This is a true partnership,” Edrington said. “It’s really in our interest that T3 succeeds.”

The fees are essentially a convenience fee for making accessibility to the images a matter of simply going online and searching by keywords, rather than waiting 30-60 days for a response to a Freedom of Information Act Request for images that may or may not exist, Edrington said.

The arrangement is similar to the one made by the National Archives with Ancestry.com, he said, which is permitted to charge a fee for access to certain federal records in exchange for digitizing, categorizing and storing those records.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(Official U.S. Air Force photo)

Knowing the facts: National American Indian Heritage Month

(Official U.S. Air Force photo) Maj. Gen. Clarence L. Tinker was the highest ranking officer of Native-American ancestry and the first general lost in action during World War II. November is National American Indian Heritage Mo...
 
 

VA implements second phase of Choice Card Program

Washington, DC – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that it began mailing Veterans Choice Cards on Nov. 17 to Veterans currently waiting more than 30-days from their preferred date or the date that is medically determined by their physician for an appointment at a VA facility. “VA continues to focus on implementation...
 
 

Red Cross shares top safety tips for Thanksgiving

Millions of people will travel to spend their Thanksgiving holiday with loved ones and the American Red Cross has steps they can follow to help make sure they have a safe trip. The holiday is also a time when cooks spend a lot of time in the kitchen and there are tips they can use...
 

 

Officials Highlight Health, Wellness Resources for Military Families

WASHINGTON – As efforts continue to strengthen service members and their families, Pentagon officials held a Bloggers Roundtable to highlight the myriad resources available to tackle the unique military and transitional challenges those who serve may face. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy Rosemary Freitas Williams, Marine Corps Sgt. Maj....
 
 
HBI

Tips for getting enough healthy protein in your diet

At a time when over a third of American adults are obese and childhood obesity rates are rising exponentially, more Americans are looking for meat alternatives in their dining choices. In fact, close to 16 million Americans are...
 
 

AF closes FY14 force management programs

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Airmen who met the service’s reduction in force board were notified of the board’s results Nov. 19, bringing the fiscal year 2014 force management programs to an end. The RIF board selected 354 captains and majors across the Air Force for non-retention, half of the number the service previously projected it would...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin