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Fedora has been closely associated with digital preservation from the very beginning, but this relationship has evolved over time. Fedora was originally an XML-based system, and digital objects were preserved, in part, by encoding them in Fedora Object XML (FOXML), which included everything about the object: metadata, its relationships to other objects, its version history, and its audit trail. But no software application lasts forever, and FOXML is not a standard that is known anywhere outside the Fedora community, making the task of reading and understanding the contents of a Fedora repository absent the Fedora application quite difficult. Over time, we have shifted to adopting well-known, non-application-specific standards, as well as providing a mechanism for exporting repository contents to disk using standard serialization options. At the same time, we have moved beyond the conception of Fedora as a preservation system to one that supports and enables an overall preservation strategy. This means Fedora has a set of features that support digital preservation, but it also provides well-documented integration points and patterns for connecting Fedora with other applications and services in a larger digital preservation environment.
This lightning talk will briefly describe the ways in which Fedora’s approach to digital preservation have changed over time, and how Fedora can support an overall digital preservation strategy.
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