The Fedora repository project relies on many individuals and institutions to make the project successful. We are grateful for their commitment and will showcase their contributions in a series of community profiles aimed at recognizing our contributors’ achievements, and introducing them to the rest of the community.
Bethany Seeger, Digital Library Web Developer, Amherst College, has been a contributor to the Fedora repository team for two years. Her focus is on MODS XML to RDF mapping as Amherst College Library migrates to Fedora 4.
• Please share some information about yourself and your interests.
I’m a relative newbie to the library field—I started out my career working on network routers, then a document management web application, then weather radars, only to end up in Frost Library at Amherst College. It’s been a soft landing and I’m enjoying learning about library science and the community surrounding it.
When I’m not working I enjoy studying Japanese martial arts. And I could talk for hours about weather—there’s a very good chance you’d see me watching the clouds if we were outside.
• How long have you been working with Fedora?
I’ve been working with Fedora since pretty much the day I started at Amherst College – it’ll be two years in June.
• What attracted you to working with the Fedora repository team?
My colleague, Aaron Coburn, has been actively participating in the project for a while and immediately drew me into the community. Amherst College is very supportive of us contributing to Fedora.
• What are you working on now?
Currently I’m focused on moving our digital objects from a Fedora 3 based repository to a Fedora 4 environment. We’ve spent many hours over the last year working on our MODS XML to RDF mapping and I’m now writing code to make that translation happen. It’s rewarding to see all our effort so far becoming something tangible.
• What aspect(s) of contributing to Fedora development have you found to be particularly rewarding?
I’ve participated in the import/export work that’s been ongoing. That experience has been highly rewarding. Working with people from different institutions towards a common goal is motivating – to see that level of collaboration and to be part of a larger community. It has been great connecting with people from all over the country who do similar work. It’s nice to feel part of a larger group especially when the team I work with locally is pretty small.
• If the Fedora repository platform was a house, what would your next home improvement project be?
This is a tricky question, especially with other houses being built right around it in the same style. One of the things I’d most want to ensure is data integrity – which is something along the lines of being able to swap out the systems in the basement – aka Modeshape. It’s proven difficult to do that, so making that part of the system more robust, as is, would be a good investment/improvement.
• Do you have any advice for future Fedora contributors?
If you have the interest and time, just dive in. The community is very supportive and helpful. It’s the first open source community that I’ve contributed to and it’s been really easy and rewarding to be involved.