December 15, 2000
Colloquium Speaker: Sayeed Choudhury
Mr. Sayeed Choudhury is the Milton S. Eisenhower Library Hodson Director of the Digital Knowledge Center at the Sheridan Libraries of The Johns Hopkins University. His responsibilities include strategic planning, oversight for advancing the creation of the digital research library and emerging technology projects. Mr. Choudhury serves as principal investigator for sponsored-research projects including the Lester S. Levy Sheet Music Collection Project, funded through NSFs' Digital Libraries Initiative and the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and the Comprehensive Access to Print Materials (CAPM), funded by the Mellon Foundation. Prior to his arrival at the Sheridan Libraries, Mr. Choudhury performed simulation and visualization of natural disasters for his graduate studies in Civil Engineering and Geography and Environmental Engineering, with an emphasis on information systems engineering. His work has been presented at American Library Association, Advances in Digital Libraries, NSF-CONACyt-ISTEC Digital Libraries, Cyberfest and Association of Research and Libraries Division (Maryland Library Association chapter) and Oxford University. He has also served on NSF and IMLS review panels. Mr. Choudhury has worked as a consultant for the United Nations, Danish Hydraulic Institute, the Bangladesh Government Water Board and the Army Corps of Engineers.
The Digital Knowledge Center conducts research and development to advance the creation of digital libraries. The DKC is an auxillary enterprise of the Sheridan Libraries and is located in the Milton S. Eisenhower Library. The DKC focuses on R&D within the areas of electronic publishing, digital pedagogy, emerging technologies, usability and knowledge management, especially considering the problems of ingestion (i.e., importing materials appropriately into repositories) and access (i.e., services for end users that facilitate use of digital libraries.) The DKC develops systems and software for the creation of digital libraries in conjunction with faculty, students and librarians. It has partnerships with faculty, JHU Press (for Project Muse) corporations and other universities. Among others, the US National Science Foundation (NSF), the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and the Mellon Foundation have funded DKC projects. The DKC also provides leadership in fostering an environment or culture which is conducive for advancing the library and university in the information age. It is an innovative collaboration between the Milton S. Eisenhower Library and the faculty of the Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, the G.W.C. Whiting School of Engineering, and the School of Professional Studies in Business and Education (formerly School of Continuing Studies) on the Homewood Campus. It is also a laboratory for employing new technologies in the teaching, learning and scholarship processes. By combining input and expertise from diverse fields ranging from Computer Science to medieval French, the DKC focuses on a cross-disciplinary research and development agenda. For example, in collaboration with the Computer Science Department, the DKC has developed a fast, disk-based search engine. The features, functions and capabilities of this search engine have been developed with consideration of needs from humanists and guidance from a usability specialist.