We are all working very hard on transcribing manuscript data for this project and we’re making great progress. We are using tools like Saktumiva to manipulate that data in ways that produce the intellectual results we seek. But the data itself is probably the most valuable outcome of this project at this point. It is not hard to imagine that many uses of the manuscript images and transcriptions may arise with future technology that we have not yet imagined. Furthermore, cloud services, websites, DNS registrations, and even universities are not secure, long-time hosts for project data.
The scientists are ahead of us humanists on these issues, since their projects tend to generate vast amounts of data, compared with humanities work. Also, they have the resources to establish major services to protect their work in the long term. In particular, in 2013, CERN launched Zenodo as a free, open repository for all research data generated by European Union research. Since its launch, Zenodo has grown and diversified to host all research data in general.
Amongst the advantages of Zenodo are that it is, probably, “too big to fail.” The backers of Zenodo are a healthy mixture of major governmental, institutional and research bodies dedicated to the long view of data protection and storage. It is easy to use. It allows for data versioning. It allows data to be embargoed or hidden at users’ discretion (that is valuable, for example, when preserving manuscript images where copyright rights have not yet been negotiated), and it issues free DOI numbers for all uploads.
One further plus for Zenodo in the context of our Suśruta Project is that it provides seamless archiving for GitHub files.
Therefore, we have created a Zenodo mirror for the Suśruta Project Github site. The mirror has the DOI 10.5281/zenodo.6471656. It is public (CC license), permanent, and automatically updated whenever there is a release at the project’s GitHub site.
We have also uploaded the manuscript images on which this project is based to Zenodo:
- MS Kathmandu KL 699: DOI 10.5281/zenodo.6474120
- MS Kathmandu NAK 5-333: DOI 10.5281/zenodo.6474130
- MS Kathmandu NAK 1-1079: DOI 10.5281/zenodo.6675574
These manuscript images are under restricted access. Permission to view the images must be obtained from the National Archives, Kathmandu.
This adds one more layer of long-term security to the data of the Suśruta Project. It is our hope that future generations of scholars will continue to find innovative ways to discover new knowledge from this project.I am grateful to Dr Michael Willis for conversations that encouraged me to explore Zenodo.
|↑1||I am grateful to Dr Michael Willis for conversations that encouraged me to explore Zenodo.|