Today I attended the Mormon Studies Coordinating Committee in the Harold B. Lee Library to discuss ways in which we could better coordinate Mormon Studies both within the university and beyond. (Those attending today: Scott Duvall, Susan Fales, Karen Griggs, Dale Swensen, Connie Lamb, Robert Means, Janet Bradford, Mike Hunter, and myself)
The MSCC was established for doing this sort of coordination in-house. In the wake of discussion about changes in scholarly communication, we discussed ways of using a blog or a wiki in connection with the Mormon Studies Resource Guide that the committee has coordinated and Mike Hunter maintains. I demonstrated the wiki that Janet Bradford, her assistant Ruth, and I have been using in planning the next phase of the Mormon Literature Database, and it was decided that this wiki would be linked to the Mormon Studies resource guide. All the committee members (plus all appropriate experts in Mormon Studies) would be invited to develop this Mormon Studies Wiki. This will be a protected wiki--public, but editable only by those invited. A more general public wiki about Mormonism exists, the MormonWiki, and we discussed the Wikipedia of course (and the need to add info to that resource as a matter of course when developing digital resources at BYU).
Some of our discussion concerned the need to coordinate on the development of a DTD or XML schema appropriate to Mormon studies so that digital resources can maximize their interoperability and be able to be found through aggregators. I showed the OAIster aggregator as an example, and Susan Fales discussed how digital projects at BYU are marked up, though nothing specific to Mormonism exists. Because of the advantages of consistent metadata, during this discussion I referred to a document on Best Practices for Shareable Metadata. I found this through a useful PowerPoint given at the Central Michigan University Mediasite User Group Meeting by Kat Hagedorn on 1/23/07 (linked from here).
We discussed blogs, and the function of subject librarians (perhaps in keeping blogs), and involving these people when developing schema or digital architecture generally.