DPLAfest 2017—the fourth major gathering of the Digital Public Library of America’s broad community—will take place on April 20-21, 2017 in Chicago at Chicago Public Library’s Harold Washington Library Center. For more information, visit the DPLA website.
This presentation will explore the process of evaluating, disrupting, and re-envisioning an evolving technology project because sometimes the most promising of ideas encounter real-world limitations. Yet, accepting that radical change is required opens up the possibility of finding new and better approaches to solving our common problems. The DPLA technology team has recently changed course in its project to overhaul our ingestion infrastructure, scaling back our use of LDP/triplestore models and technologies, and embracing those of big data and data science. Our new system is modular and optimized for distributed batch processing. Throughout the process, we engaged with critical questions relevant to anyone doing the difficult work of innovation.